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Letters to the Editor

July 10, 2010

LTE: Republicans need to speak up on drilling

DUNCAN — This is in regard to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Lets pretend that Mr. Rahm Emanuel is a Republican spokesperson. He has said that “we should not let a good crises go to waste.” I would see him working behind the scenes with congress to relax the regulations against drilling on government controlled land all over the U.S.

I think that we should be drilling in areas like Anwar in Alaska, in Colorado shale, in Wyoming, in Utah, etc. as I have heard others talking about, but I have not heard any of the Republican spokespersons talking about drilling in these areas.

Here is the way the argument could be presented:

1. This disaster was the result of having to drill for oil at 5,000 ft (one mile = 5,280 ft) below the surface of the ocean. Therefore, the safety blowout valve is 5,000 ft away from the workers on the drilling platform. It can only be reached by robots. The news media is saying that it will take two to three months to control and stop the flow.

2. If the safety blowout valve is right in front of the workers at ground level, then we are talking more like 2-3 hours to get it under control. Equipment can be brought in very quickly that would be needed for the job.

3. This is the fault of our own congress, because they have forced the off-shore drilling by blocking the drilling on government controlled land (where the oil is and could be easily produced). I know that off-shore production is normally safe, as past performance has shown. I am not suggesting that it be stopped, by any means.

But, every Republican congressman and spokesperson should be screaming for legislation that relaxes the restrictions for drilling on land.

Also, think of the savings. A new off-shore drilling rig can cost as much as $1 billion or more for the big deep water production facilities. This crises should be used to open our own lands for drilling which would help get us off of foreign oil, and that would be a good thing for all Americans.

Best regards,

Tim Burns

Duncan

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