Urge the Arctic Council to Implement a Universal Standard on Oil Spill Disaster Response

arctic winter landscape

Target: Arctic Council

Goal: Craft a new standard for oil spill disaster response by which all nations and their organizations can be regulated and held accountable by, thus ensuring the ongoing wellbeing of the Arctic environment

An oil rush is currently occurring in the Arctic, with more companies now making their stake to meet the energy demands of the coming years. However, the increased drilling is bringing with it a higher risk of what experts deem potentially “catastrophic” accidents. Legislator reports say that the remote nature of drilling locations in the Arctic not only makes it less likely to detect spills, but also make it extremely problematic for accident management resources to be accessed in the event of one. Environmental groups state that oil companies lack efficient methods to clean up spilled crude, and that the hostile conditions of the Arctic only further exacerbate the issue. Studies show that should any blow-outs occur before the end of the summer, the oncoming ice of the winter would make it impossible to cap until the next summer. Polar bears, whales, and a variety of other species would see disastrous effects on their populations in the event of this kind of spillage left to spread for such an extended amount of time.

It for these reasons that The Environmental Audit Committee of Britain’s House of Commons has begun urging the Arctic Council (a forum of the eight Arctic nations) to put together a disaster response plan which would be universally acknowledged and adhered to by all nations, guaranteeing that the necessary measures are in place for adequately responding to accidents. They additionally call for a higher and “preferably unlimited, financial liability regime” for all drilling.

Demand that the Arctic Council put the necessary time into creating a universal disaster response initiative so that the Arctic and all its wildlife can continue to live without fear of environmental disaster. If no decisions can be made which would guarantee greater safety for the area, a moratorium must once again be placed on drilling.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Arctic Council,

You are no doubt aware of the increase in drilling prospects taking place in the Arctic region. With today’s energy demands, the growing need for companies to explore these precious areas is understandable but not yet appropriately managed. The Environmental Audit Committee of Britain’s House of Commons has recently come forward to you with findings which necessitate a greater attention to the regulations nations should be adhering to. Studies have clearly shown that the results of any blowout occurring as the summer ends would be “catastrophic” due to the oncoming Arctic winter. Immediate action is necessary.

For the continued wellbeing of the Arctic environment, the proposals made by Audit Committee must be implemented. This would require the creation of a universal standard for disaster response – making a huge and progressive step towards a safe era of resource procurement. They also call for a higher financial liability regime for oil and gas operations.

As the cooperative leadership of eight nations, it is your responsibility to ensure that the Arctic environment is not destroyed due to lack of appropriate measures which you here have a chance to make. Failure to do so will only increase the risk of extreme and negative consequences – if you cannot come to an agreement on new policies, it is only necessary that a moratorium be placed on drilling until such a time as safety can be given priority.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

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274 Signatures

  • Eric von Borstel
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