The Pros And Cons Of Trans Alaska Pipeline

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Since its construction in 1977, the Trans Alaska Pipeline has transported almost 17 billion barrels of oil, and currently transports about 527,323 barrels a day. It celebrated its 40th Anniversary last year, and, even after all this time, is still facing controversy. The pipeline is highly debated as economically inclined citizens of Alaska are clashing with more environmental types. The Trans Alaska Pipeline Authorization Act, signed by President Nixon in 1973, protected the pipeline by banning all legal challenges against the construction of the pipeline. However, this law did not stop the critics of the pipeline from speaking out.
There are several groups who are not in favor of the Trans Alaska Pipeline. One of these groups is the Environmentalists.
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A big part of this number is the employees themselves. TAPS employs about 2500 men and women, and, “nearly 95 percent of Alyeska employees live in Alaska and carry a deep satisfaction knowing that their work is essential to their state and communities (Barrett).” They are so passionate about their efforts that they even refer to it as ‘TAPS pride’. Not only does TAPS provide job opportunities in construction, engineering, business, health & safety, and computer science, it also provides the opportunity for a paid internship for students looking for experience. As well as offering a source of income for the citizens of Alaska, TAPS also provides a great deal of revenue for…show more content…
Ever since that day, the pipeline is constantly being changed for the better. “Egan said the tinkering with TAPS is expected to continue for years” (Nemec). The safety precautions placed on the pipeline are always top priority and Alyeska is pouring a great deal of funds into keeping the operations safe. Furthermore, the pipeline is not just a source of stability for Alaskan citizens, but also an important topic for all Americans. TAPS transports 17% of the United State’s domestic petroleum. If the pipeline were to stop, “A loss of that production would increase prices by at least 10 to 16 percent” (Balan). This is very important, as the majority of the American population is in constant need of these resources. A shift this dramatic in the economy would lead to outrage and possible changes in economic inflation. All in all, the Trans Alaska pipeline has provided for a great number of people and has not failed to let them down. It has become a staple in Alaskan culture and in the United States economy. Though critics of the pipeline may try to spread suggestions of inevitable environmental disaster, these claims have been disproven before and will be disproven again. In the words of Lisa Murkowski, “As TAPS reaches 40 good years, we look back, and appreciate the past. And we also look forward, and set our sights on at least 40
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