To Drill, or Not To Drill?

Democrats and Republicans continue to spar over what’s the best way to bring down gas prices, and reduce our dependency in foreign oil. An issue is whether to drill for oil in parts of the country that are currently off limits, or look for other renewable sources of fuel. Bill Stamps has both sides of this debate.


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Houston’s Jerry Koch has just filled up his truck. It’s reliable, but he admits—it’s a gas guzzler.

Bill Stamps: “What did it just cost you?”

“I don’t know. What do I see seventy-bucks over there, and I could probably squeeze seventy-eight, or something like that.”

Jerry has a 3 year old grandson who he absolutely adores. So when it comes to drilling for oil , he’s torn between what’s best for now, and what’s best for the future.

“Leaving him a world that’s in pretty good shape is real important to me.”

It’s also important to Melissa Galvez.  She’s a volunteer for move-on-dot-org — a political group known for its backing of liberal causes.

As soon as you start drilling in new lands, you are damaging the environment in one way or another. You’re disturbing habitats.  You’re creating waste.  It affects animals.  It also affects people.

Supporters of new drilling say it makes no sense not to drill in these areas where most experts agree there’s about a ten year supply of oil. The problem is it could take up to ten years to get it out of the ground. For people like Melissa Galvez that’s too long.

“That oil will not be in our hands for 7- 10 years, so why should we jump to start new drilling, just to create damage to our environment when that’s also a quote-unquote long-term solution.”

Senator John Cornyn and other supporters of drilling say it should have been done long time ago.

“Some people say it will take a long time for this to come online. I said well if we had done it when it was first proposed, it would already be online.”

So back to Jerry Koch who just paid more than seventy-dollars to fill up his truck. He knows it could be awhile before drilling would make a difference but…
“If there is oil under the ground that could benefit us, I think we should probably drill if it needs to come down to decisions that say we should do one or the other.  But I would like to see alternatives before we do that.”

The debate is sure to continue as we get closer to the November elections.

Bill Stamps…KUHF Houston Public Radio News.

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