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Economic Implications of Arctic Oil Drilling

Economic Implications of Arctic Oil Drilling

For more than a decade, debate over drilling for oil on the Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge [ANWR] has continued unabated." This is the opening line of the introduction to the commonly encountered ethical paradox of economic interests versus moral interests. This paradox is steadfastly centered through the debate of oil drilling on the Coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The debate is considered and argued by diverse and infinitely intertwined societal organizations. The foremost of these organizations include the United States Federal Government, the government of the state of Alaska, various environmental groups, and the native populations of the region. Each of these groups have deep seeded motivations and internalized philosophies underlying specific positional tendencies, influences, and arguments. In considering this especially pervasive debate, it is these individual and group nuances that are most beneficial and revealing in philosophical exploration necessary for obtaining an informed, profound argument for a conclusive and convincing position within this continuingly discussion.

In considering the motivational philosophies of what can be considered the foremost groups or individuals involved in the discussion, it is useful to separate the arguments into two somewhat obvious partitions: those in support of oil drilling, and those against it. The chief argument in support of the drilling for oil seems to be promise of economic prosperity in the form of reduced foreign dependency, a significantly boosted United States Gross National Product, greatly improved nationwide employment, and widespread individual economic betterment in exchange for little negative environmental implication. The chief counter argument also seems to be in favor of similar economic prosperity. However, this counter argument recommends much more environmentally concerned means to obtain the same economic goals in the form of suggestions towards improving fuel efficiency and pursuing other economically profitable means of reducing the overall need for such environmentally harmful activities in the first place.

The statistics in support and against both sides of this debate can be quite overwhelming if one chooses to consolidate, compare, and contrast the numbers in order to determine some sort of conclusion. Those in support of the oil drilling can tell you all about the possible number of oil barrels with potential for recovery. Furthermore, these supporters can relate those numbers to personal financial numbers, regional financial numbers, national financial numbers, and exponential...

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