How do we become independent of "foreign oil" so long as our economy is still oil-based? The sollution may be to drill for oil in Antarctica.
I am in the process of searching for more resources because this article is extremely brief and seems biased in suggesting that Antarctica has no valuable mineral resources, wanting to keep the continent free from human corruption.
However, they do state that the price to recover the oil in Antarctica would be approximately $65-$80 billion dollars a barrel. In the time this was written, that was easily a turn-down for drilling, since in 2003 the price per barrel was approximately $30.
But for those of us today in 2005, where $65 dollars a barrel were the good ol' days...drilling in Antarctica can be profitable.
(As you will see later, I'm not even sure why drilling there would be so expensive, most of it would be standard off shore drilling).
This source argues that maybe there's quite a bit more oil than is currently estimated, due to the fact that Antarctica once was a lush forested continent. Now, it is capped by ice (which could in itself act as a trap for oil).
This I don't think is a very good assumption to make, we need exploratory wells and geologic surveys to estimate more accurately what really is there.
So how much oil is there?
Quite a lot for US needs, not much though compared to the world in total. It is almost all (so far) estimated to be off shore...this is unreasonable, undoubtedly there is oil under the ice, but how much is unknown as we cannot map the sub-surface rocks. Drilling may be too expensive to determine what's under the ice, so we may be limited to just off-shore drilling.
Since the concerned nations (the ones sending scientists to Antarctica) have banned mineral exploitation, this treaty would need to be changed.
The treaty was enacted primarily because no one could agree on who gets what resources, but concerning the problems of oil today, I feel this can be over-come in the following manner.
Every nation in the (SCAR) gets an equal share of a new oil company. Not Halliburton, not Total Fina Elf, a new oil company.
These nations all contribute equipment, personel and expertise to the drill sites, equally.
And then sell it for equal shares of the profit.
This allows everyone there to profit together, and allows the US to buy all the oil for its own consumption.
Or at least most of the oil there.
Basically I think this is a viable idea, but currently it lacks sources, the first source is only useful for price estimates...but does not cite where the estimates came from. Either way, the first source stupidly tries to state that drilling for oil in Antarctica would cost more than oil shale mining...this makes no sense as we do plenty of off-shore drilling anyway, why not on the coasts of Antarctica?