Environment Weather

Tales of Ike, and lessons about offshore drilling

We know that Hurricane Ike is going to be the worst when the National Weather Service issues warnings about getting out or face certain death. The winds are a problem, but the real issue is storm surge, and it looks to be unstoppable.

We, in Missouri, are now under a flood watch, because we’ll be finishing with the remnants of Lowell from the Pacific, just as we begin to get hit with Ike from the Gulf. Still, the risk we face is minimal, nothing, compared to what Texans are facing, and Cuba and Haiti have faced earlier.

The oil platforms along the Texas coast have been abandoned, and the refineries closed down. Congress has also had to close so the representatives from Texas and other Gulf states could head home to help. This before the debate on the new “plan” to allow off shore oil drilling.

In the midst of the sadness and despair of the damage this storm has brought, and will continue to bring, we’re faced with the ultimate irony of discontinuing the debate on allowing drilling for oil along the Atlantic coast, because we’re in the middle of a hurricane that has closed down oil drilling along the Gulf coast.

Political irony aside, I hope that the storm surge is not as high, the winds lighter, the walls are stronger, the rain gentle rather than driving. And a reminder that the Red Cross needs volunteers, blood, and money, and not just in Dallas. If you want to help the Haitians and Cubans, the Catholic Relief Services is providing help for both. Unfortunately, that’s all we can do to help Cuba.

I just got a call from my roommate that gas prices are shooting up at least a dollar per gallon this afternoon, and they’re already over $5.00 a gallon across the River from us.

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