Wow, I am SO glad that my master and I spent a couple weeks in Montana in and around Yellowstone last summer. I decided that today I’d include some pics from our Yellowstone trip since Montana will now never be the same, thanks to ExxonMobil’s ruptured pipeline that just spewed tens of thousands of gallons of crude oil into Yellowstone River. The slick was 25 miles long and detected yesterday. Crews evacuated residences and began clean-up today.
The Yellowstone River is one of the nation’s most well known. The river provides much more in benefit than any pipeline could ever provide. Why, you ask, did someone put a pipeline so close to the Yellowstone in the first place? The answer is simple: Money.
If you boil down environmental vs. industrial arguments, the issue that comes to light is money. Why are humans so obsessed with money? Why don’t humans place financial assessment on their natural treasures? Why don’t humans even realize that the “fines” companies pay cost less than it would to develop industry in an environmentally sound way?
In other words, if it costs $100 to develop industry responsibly, but $50 to do it irresponsibly, then a corporation is going to do the cheaper of the two– even if there is a “stiff $10 penalty” imposed. The penalty needs to be more along the order of $60… or at least somewhere above $50. Do you get the math? In reality, corporations pay piddly fines that are cheaper than doing things the right way at the get-go. Fines need to be higher. Then, corporations would do the environmentally right thing because it would also be the least expensive in the long run.
Update to story: most recent reports are that the leak will not affect the portion of the river that runs through Yellowstone National Park, as the stretch of 25miles of affected waterway is downstream.