French oil giant warns against Arctic oil drilling

September 26, 2012 

From CBC News:

French oil company Total SA says the costs to be incurred from an oil disaster in the Arctic outweigh the potential resources that could be extracted.

Total CEO Chrisophe de Margerie told The Financial Times in an interview published Wednesday that the risks of Arctic drilling are too great. ...

De Margerie said he's not entirely opposed to Arctic drilling in principle. Indeed, he specified that gas leaks were easier to deal with than oil spills. The company's main Arctic energy assets are natural gas-related, including a part of the Shtokman field in the Barents Sea.

Last week, the Environmental Audit Committee of Britain's House of Commons urged action to halt oil and gas drilling in the Arctic until new safeguards -- including vastly increased financial guarantees and universal standards on disaster response -- are put in place.

Full story at

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