Target: John Watson, CEO of Chevron
Goal: Applaud Chevron’s decision to halt drilling operations in the Arctic indefinitely
Arctic drilling presents many dangers to the ecosystem besides emission-related damage from eventually burning the extracted oil. There is a lack of contingency plans for an oil spill in the region which would be near impossible to mitigate in the isolated, stormy waters and would destroy the habitats for bowhead whales, polar bears, and ice seals. We applaud the decision by Chevron to halt all Arctic drilling operations indefinitely.
It is past time that we work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Arctic is the frontline of this catastrophe where we see runaway warming effects like the loss of reflective Arctic sea ice and the thawing of frozen tundra and release of trapped methane. Melting sea ice doesn’t raise sea levels because it is already floating in the oceans, however, its white surface does reflect sunlight and the absence of summer sea ice causes substantial ocean warming.
The Arctic is already on schedule to be ice-free in the summer sometime between 2020 and 2080. Currently, sea ice is shrinking by about five percent per decade. Additionally, polar bears, the iconic bellwethers of Climate Change, have seen their populations decline. In the Beaufort Sea, numbers dropped 40 percent to a mere 900 bears between 2001 and 2010.
Chevron has faced much criticism and activist opposition to its proposed drilling projects in the Arctic. After spending over $100 million on exploration of the Beaufort Sea, Chevron has notified Canada’s National Energy Board that it will suspend all operations indefinitely. This is big news to activist organizations and we call on all environmentally minded readers to applaud this rational decision by Chevron executives.
Dear Mr. Watson,
I applaud your decision to halt all drilling operations in the Arctic Sea indefinitely. This comes as welcome news at a time when fossil fuel companies are given the green light by governments worldwide to continue business-as-usual. I appreciate the unprovoked decision to stop this destructive process and we hope other drilling companies follow your lead.
As the warming of the climate causes more ice-free summers in the Arctic, some of the the obstacles that made drilling too costly now might disappear. Consequently, I urge you to today steer Chevron in a sustainable direction to prepare a resistance to the enticement to resume drilling operations in the future.
The Arctic contains delicate ecosystems in which we should not be expanding industrial operations. We must first focus on reducing the demand for oil and the consumption of such energy in our daily lives. I applaud your decision to halt Chevron drilling operations in the Arctic.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Arturo de Frias Marques via WikiMedia Commons