“Texas of the South” – Good Idea but Bad Choice of Words

According to an article from the Sunday Star Times, posted on Stuff.co.nz this morning, oil exploration company TAG Oil is seriously looking at a major drilling expedition on the East Coast. Without doubt, this would create huge amounts of wealth in the economically failing region, however TAG Oil are not selling the idea well.

Referring to the East Coast as the “likely Texas of the South” was certainly not their best choice of words. When people put Texas and oil together, they think the BP disaster. And with people making a strange link between the Rena wreckage and deep sea drilling (and I emphasise strange, given there is no real link between the two at all), the public are probably not going to look kindly upon the proposal.

However, there is no doubt something like this is exactly what New Zealand needs. A New Zealand version of Britain’s North Sea Oil. If we get that and use the wealth from this wisely (which is what would set us apart from Britain on this one), not only would we end up coming out of the Global Financial Crisis, but we would likely be in a much better position than we were before the crisis.

And before critics say that oil isn’t going to create wealth due to people’s fear that the use of carbon compounds will result in some sort of apocalyptic destruction of the world, I would like to make it clear I disagree. The United States is still a huge consumer of oil, and the only way that’s ever going to change is if we run out of the stuff. China isn’t exactly stopping use either. There is more than enough demand for oil. We just need to get it.

Now, to go back to my comment about the Rena. There’s been a huge publicity campaign from organisations like the Greens since the Rena grounded saying that this is proof that deep sea oil drilling is going to be highly detrimental to the country. But I ask you, how many major disasters can you think of around oil drilling over the past decade? All I can think of is the BP Gulf of Mexico disaster. It’s not a common occurrence. Just because oil came out of the Rena doesn’t mean there will be an oil spill from deep sea oil drilling. Let’s be realistic.


About Daniel Farrell

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Posted on January 15, 2012, in New Zealand Politics and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Try this list: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oil_spills and Google Montara (Western Australia, 2009) – equivalent to one ‘Rena’ a day for 74 days in a row…

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