Shortly after the 2010 explosion of BP’s Deepwater Horizon drilling rig and ensuing disaster, the Italian parliament acted wisely to ban offshore drilling. This was great news for residents of Abruzzo, Italy, a small tourist area on the Italian Adriatic coast. Residents of Abruzzo were facing the same issues that Croats are confronting now. Government and Big Oil determined to drill in their precious sea.
Drilling of test wells near Abruzzo resulted in oil leakages and increased pollution in the areas around the drilling sites causing local officials to panic and attempt to cover it up, instead of confronting the real issue of allowing oil and gas companies to exploit natural resources.
While working to stop offshore drilling in Abruzza, Dr. Maria Rita D'Orsogna, a physicist and math professor at the California State University at Northridge, reviewed the environmental statement provided by the oil and gas companies. She found that there were no risk assessments, no emergency plans, no studies on the effects of pollutants released into the waters.
Just like Barabara Doric, head of the Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency claims, oil and gas companies will be held to the highest standards, Italians were given similar assurances. Upon examination D'Orsogna found that the permits were most likely rubber-stamped by office workers with little relevant expertise.
In this 2010 article from the Daily Finance D'Orsogna iteraters over the real environmental dangers of drilling in the Adriatic Sea:
- shallow sea
- weak currents
- seismically active
All of these concerns are also true here in Croatia. It’s the same sea!
The Croatian Parliament needs to act responsibly and for the needs of the citizens of Croatia and the world, and ban all onshore and offshore oil and gas drilling.