2013-03-29 / Letters

Look further into oil debate

To the editor:

I recently read an article regarding the transportation of the “oil” through the Portland Pipeline. There was one point in the article that said “... in Canada where they can extract the oil cheaply,” or something to that effect.

The whole process of getting the oil and or gas out of the ground and into either a pipeline or a tanker is extremely wasteful, dirty and expensive. The press materials explain that the chemicals used (.5 percent) to extract the “oil” is a small percentage of oil extracted. Though a true statement, the numbers they’re talking about are millions and millions of gallons. Are they saying millions of gallons of chemicals is cheap?

The dangerous chemicals include Naptha (a carcinogen), caustic soda (a corrosive acid) and hydrochloric acid, to name a few. When brought to the surface, other chemicals are used to extract the oils even further, resulting in huge surface toxic waste pools that, if not contained, would create an enormous environmental disaster. Not to mention they are on migratory bird routes and are known to have lured millions of birds to their deaths as they look like just another water stop an their way north and south.

I know the oil people that you interviewed for the piece are not going to tell you these things, but fracking is by far a clean or cheap process from which to get energy (oil).

Andy Haynes South Portland

Return to top