The Obama administration has been fast-tracking Shell's dangerous drilling plan, while paying remarkably little attention to the ecological fears it raises and the potential devastation a major spill or spills would cause to the native peoples of the north.
Pipeline companies like Transcanada, Enbridge, Shell and Kinder Morgan remind me of guys who just won't take no for an answer. They're going to keep coming back no matter what we tell them, unless we cut them off for good.
In the years to come, when we look back at the lost mooring of a Shell drill ship, we can say that this was when we lifted our collective anchor and set course for a green, sustainable and peaceful society. This must be our turning point.
Yesterday I was served with an urgent notice from Shell, the world's wealthiest oil company, whom in the past weeks we have been vigorously and prominently campaigning against in our Save The Arctic drive.
Your secretary of the interior, Ken Salazar, recently told reporters asking about Shell's recent drilling permits and Alaska's Arctic, "I believe there's not going to be an oil spill." "I believe" is not good policy. I believe that unicorn fur is the most absorbent clean-up product.
When it comes to oil in the north, the time has arrived for environmentalists and Alaska Natives themselves to face the fact the gasoline that fuels the internal combustion engine long ago corrupted traditional cultural practices.
"I have to see it to believe it," was the reaction to my Russian colleague, Jon Burgwald, when he told me that every spring the rivers in Northern Russia turn black with oil saturated ice. He sent me the pictures last night.
The reasons not to drill just keep mounting -- and the reasons to drill? Well, there seems to be just one, and I can't say it in politically correct company. I can give you a hint: Republican rhetoric and the 2012 presidential election.
If there is a spot on Earth as sacred or as critical to the future of our wild birds as the Gulf of Mexico, it is the unspoiled Arctic. The potential harm from a BP-scale spill is almost beyond comprehension.
The callous greed in the oil patch seems to know no limits. Here we have a company, Royal Dutch Shell, bursting with earnings, at the apogee of its yearly returns, going after the last dollar or Euro to make things fatter still.