BP or DC?

BP—before disaster– had been trying to position itself as a progressive company with such ad slogans as “Beyond Petroleum.” And indeed, some stations currently offer biodiesel., for example in Strasburg. BP as a company was NOT pouring money into climate-change denying campaigns as was Exxon. It was a “greener” oil company. . .or so it seemed.

But we now know that BP does not stand for “Be Prepared.” From what we have seen this past month, as the oil spill in the Gulf continues, BP may need to change its name to DC for Damage Control, or Don’t Count the gallons of oil pouring into the Gulf.
Does this latest environmental disaster point to our addiction to petroleum? That’s too much of a conceptual leap. We need to start first with our addiction to inventions, chemicals, and technology without any accompanying wisdom as to how they should be used. For example, BP’s early application of chemical agents to disperse the oil may actually cause more environmental damage than the oil itself. Clearly, BP was not thinking in terms of the Big Picture.

There’s a saying in some circles that the mindset that created the problem cannot solve the problem. We cannot keep inventing things and using technology to fix the problems caused by malfunctions and misuse of other inventions, without a radical examination of, and shift in, our values.

A few weeks ago, the invention of a concrete cap to place over the well to stop the oil failed. It had not been tested, and if it had, it might have worked. Why not? My guess is that BP was in Damage Control mode. I sincerely hope the current “top kill” strategy of pouring mud into the well is successful, but this sounds like something a 7-year-old could have thought of. Why has it taken over a month to implement?
If, 100 years from now there is an ocean, and a planet that can support human life, I envision a company that puts people and the environment Before Profits

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This post was submitted by Diana Woodall.

Comments

  1. David Rood says:

    “Does this latest environmental disaster point to our addiction to petroleum? That’s too much of a conceptual leap.”

    No, indeed, it is a very logical and proximate leap. Without a need for oil, there would be no deep sea drilling.

    “We need to start first with our addiction to inventions, chemicals, and technology without any accompanying wisdom as to how they should be used.”

    Inventing is the nature of Man (and Woman). The spear was invented to hunt but was also used for aggression. It is not the technology, per se, it is foibles of humanity that make technology work against us. Had we made the kinds of investments in alternate energy sources 10 or 20 years ago, oil rigs in the Gulf may very well have become economically untenable by now. Big Oil and Big Auto fought against change in a short-sighted attempt to protect their own interests and it appears that strategy has backfired. We the people played a big part in the present disaster. We built bigger homes, drove more powerful cars, and elected politicians whom we knew to be puppets of the oil industry. Technology was the gun, greed and hubris were the perpetrators.

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