Do We Risk Armed Conflict Over Arctic Oil Drilling?

“Drill baby, drill” is become a popular refrain among those who want to open up more land to drilling. But will our quest for oil in the Artic lead us into war over this rapidly dwindling resource?

Now I am not a fan of Julian Assage or Wikileaks, but even my eyebrows went up reading some of the diplomatic cables between Russia, the United States, and other countries bordering the Artic circle. After all, the Artic is thought to hold some of the last great, untapped reserves of oil and natural gas in the world, and with many leading oil suppliers bordering these reserves, it’s only natural that certain countries are bound to bump heads.  It could be a war of words, or something much more sinister.

Russia in particular is worrying me. Russian Ambassador to NATO Dmitriy Rogozin has said… “The twenty-first century will see a fight for resources, and Russia should not be defeated in this fight … NATO has sensed where the wind comes from. It comes from the North.”

Russia is actually the world’s largest oil producer now, and something tells me they’re not as “environmentally sensitive” when it comes to when and where they drill for oil. Is Artic drilling going to lead to open, armed conflict? It’s hard to say. What is certain though is that the longer we rely on oil, the more we put ourselves at risk over these sorts of resource wars. Whereas relying on solar or wind power, or electric cars puts our energy future more securely in our own hands. Going green isn’t just about cleaning up our act as stewards of the Earth. It is about national security, promoting growth and peace among nations, rather than competing over the scant remaining resources that are drawing us to the least hospitable places on the planet for drilling. Are we actually willing to fight a war over oil?

And don’t come crying about Iraq, as we import all of 151 million barrels of oil annually…or about a week’s worth of regular consumption. We actually imported less oil from Iraq in 2010 than we did Pre-9/11. No, I am talking about a real, sustained, conventional conflict whose only purpose is to secure the Arctic for drilling purposes.

As Albert Einstein said, “I know not what weapons World War III will be fought with, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”

Source: Treehugger via Wikileaks

Chris DeMorro is a writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs. You can read about his slow descent into madness at Sublime Burnout or follow his non-nonsensical ramblings on Twitter @harshcougar.

Christopher DeMorro

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or else, he's running, because he's one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.