July 2, 2009

What you See when at Sea

Oil Tanker at Gibraltar

After fueling in Gibraltar (yea, right next to THE rock), we entered the Mediterranean. When fueling up we saw dozens of oil tankers all around us, offloading oil shipped in from lands far away. As we travel across these seas, the one thing we can almost always see around us, is an oil tanker. No doubt about it, the life blood of industrialized countries is pumping through the shipping lanes/veins of this planet. The U.S. imports over 60% of its oil, the top ten countries importing oil to the U.S. include Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Nigeria, Angola, Russia, Iraq, Algeria, and Brazil. When we fill up our tanks, we should all be reminded that the price we pay at the pump reflects few of the true costs, be they social (human rights in Saudi Arabia), political (is Hugo Chavez in Venezuela our good buddy?), military (if military costs of defending Persian Gulf oil imports were added to the price gas it would increase by over $8/gallon), or environmental (do you know about the environmental impacts of oil drilling on natural systems and indigenous people in the Niger Delta?). Beyond the hydrocarbons, we should all be reminded of what we are really pumping into our tanks. Everyday we support actions around the world through our purchasing decisions, whether we see them or not.

Posted by rohwedde at July 2, 2009 2:02 AM