Oil spill cleanup in ice conditions is the big worry for us that live in Bristol Bay.
I realize that we will need oil and gas for many years to come as we develop our alternative energy sources. If we could be given assurances that oil drilling in our back yard that produces the largest wild salmon runs in the world will be safe, then we could breath a bit easier.
Huge rollers come in from the North Pacific and Bering Sea all winter. Along with ice, how is an oil platform going to stand up to that? Cook Inlet is highly protected from such forces and can't be used as an example of safety in conditions found in Bristol Bay.
How will a fuel spill be mitigated if it does what Exxon did in Prince William Sound? It is a very risky proposition and hopefully this effort will be reviewed with all of the risks carefully in mind.
If the United States decides to proceed, then they and the oil industry need to develop a $500 million mitigation fund to support fishermen who lose their jobs after a spill.
Nels Anderson, Jr.