Sunday, May 30, 2010

And If You Think The Gulf Spill Is Bad.........

Consider the Niger delta. And also consider that they are paying a huge price to fuel our addiction:

With 606 oilfields, the Niger delta supplies 40% of all the crude the United States imports and is the world capital of oil pollution. Life expectancy in its rural communities, half of which have no access to clean water, has fallen to little more than 40 years over the past two generations. Locals blame the oil that pollutes their land and can scarcely believe the contrast with the steps taken by BP and the US government to try to stop the Gulf oil leak and to protect the Louisiana shoreline from pollution.

"If this Gulf accident had happened in Nigeria, neither the government nor the company would have paid much attention," said the writer Ben Ikari, a member of the Ogoni people. "This kind of spill happens all the time in the delta."

"The oil companies just ignore it. The lawmakers do not care and people must live with pollution daily. The situation is now worse than it was 30 years ago. Nothing is changing. When I see the efforts that are being made in the US I feel a great sense of sadness at the double standards. What they do in the US or in Europe is very different."

Bold Emphasis Mine

I feel for my fellow Americans in Louisiana and the other Gulf states. I truly do. The Nigerians are suffering for our addiction and paying as high, if not higher, price for it. I wonder if the price will ever get high enough that we will stop? Does it require Americans to pay this kind of price before we wake up to our addiction and truly take the bold, epic steps to manage it and end it?

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