Ocean Policy Trust Fund
April 20, 2004 7:40 PM   Subscribe

In the first sweeping review of US Ocean management in 35 years the Presidential appointed U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy has released a report recommending creation of the Ocean Policy Trust Fund to be funded by off-shore oil companies in exchange for drilling rights to the tune of $5 billion a year. Initial reactions are mixed. All praise the reports acknowledgement of serious Ocean mismanagement problems, but some think the report has no teeth, or there is a hidden oil industry agenda. Whatever happens with this amount of money it will be big, the last report in 1969 led to the creation NOAA.
posted by stbalbach (5 comments total)
Great post stbalbach. I wonder if this could somehow incense other international communities to follow suit. Some checks and balances should be placed to ensure big oil can't take advantage of this to the detriment of the environment. I couldn't tell from that article whether doing this automatically opens the protected waters in the NW to drilling or whether this will be used as leverage to that end. The fact that Oceana thinks the report "[fails] to offer strong, detailed solutions" to improve the oceans does smell a bit afoul.
posted by velacroix at 8:14 PM on April 20, 2004

I would be shocked, shocked! to find that the oil industry should be given carte blanche over the oceans at a time when Halliburton is effectively running the US by proxy!

OK, maybe I'm not quite that shocked.
posted by clevershark at 10:13 PM on April 20, 2004

hehehe oh yeah they'll take care of the oceans, all right! hehehehehehe
posted by muppetboy at 11:42 PM on April 20, 2004

Wouldn't the industry get to write off the 5Bs, meaning it would be another unmandated tax?
posted by roboto at 3:00 AM on April 21, 2004

Uh yeeahh I'm not buying this : I may be wrong but I think I'm right when I say it's a sophisticated coverup ... "hey they're paying 5 -billion U$ a year for drilling rights that's good" ...is it ?

First I wonder what drilling rights exactly means, and what does the right imply ; the ramifications could be interesting. And if drilling rights imply extraction and exploitation rights( hey I were in the oil companies that would be my first question)

Second , how did they come up with the 5 Billion figure ? Why not 10 billion, why not 1 billion ?

Third, why a flat rate ? What if the companies are , for instance, making a total of 50 billions a year out of public resources ? What if there are hidden costs that were not evaluated because were not know or know well enough to come up with good extimates ?

On preview: roboto at the tune of 5B a year (per company/per sector ?) I guess they would pass the cost to the consumer entirely..which in theory is good as it should partially push the price of oil up , therefore pushing people to buy fuel efficient stuff and industries to develop fuel efficient solutions..but at the same time the increase of supply should (in good theory) drive the price down compensating the 5B year additional cost on consumer.

Basically the targed shouldn't be that of making oil cheap (as it is a limited resource anyway, so sooner or later it must become more scarce and more expensive) but that of making machines and productin methods far more fuel efficient then today.
posted by elpapacito at 9:39 AM on April 21, 2004

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