California Reluctant To Fund Parks By Off Shore Drilling Proposal

The oil spill in the gulf has placed on hold a proposal for more off shore drilling along the California cost. The Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has changed his position on off shore drilling that was intended to raise money to support the state’s parks. The funding for state parks is expected to be $100 to $119 million for this and next years budget. The state is already cash strapped with an expected short fall budget of about $20 billion bucks.

In a press release the Governor also stated:

“It will not happen here in California,” Schwarzenegger said at a news conference. “If I have a choice between the $100 million and what I see in the Gulf of Mexico, I’d rather just figure out how to make up for that $100 million.”

Schwarzenegger had pushed the oil drilling proposal, known as the Tranquillon Ridge project, since last year as a way to bring money to the state’s bleeding general fund. The project — which would have been the state’s first new oil lease in 40 years, would have drilled new wells in state waters off Santa Barbara County from a platform currently sitting in federal waters. Also, after 14 years, the platform would be dismantled.

The Legislature last year refused to approve it, and so did the State Lands Commission — with then-Lt. Gov. John Garamendi, a Democrat, providing the swing “no” vote. Schwarzenegger hoped to push the plan again this year even though his hand-picked choice to replace Garamendi as lieutenant governor, Republican Sen. Abel Maldonado, said he probably wouldn’t support the project as proposed.

I believe that off shore drilling should be put on hold until the oil companies can prove that they have a system in place to stop accidents like what happened in the gulf. It is hard to believe that a country that has the technology that we have,  can not stop and oil leak, whether it be on land, or under the sea. I also find it hard to believe that BP was not prepared for such an event.

We can finger point all we want but the fact remains that we are all responsible for the oil spill. We as a nation have sat on our asses for decades refusing to believe that we are being held hostage by our own greed and thirst for oil. We have not held our politicians responsible for providing viable solutions to oil and have ignored the billions of dollars we spend to import black gold into our country. This is going to continue to bite us in the butt for years to come.

Comments welcome.


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