Podcast Rough Draft

Claire Brisse – Oil in the US


Hello my name is Claire Brisse and I’m currently a student at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Fossil fuels including coal, natural gas and oil are some of the dirtiest forms of nonrenewable energy. They produce various greenhouse gases and carbon emissions that are leading to climate change and ultimately rising temperatures. The United States is the largest consumer of oil in the entire world with a whopping 18.9 million barrels of oil a day, that’s roughly 290 billion gallons of oil a year.

Dr. William Size from Emory University goes on to explain how oil is formed:

0:00 Total 12 second Voicer: Dr. Size: 9:05 – 9:17 (in tape)

This oil it trapped underground until a drilling process removes it. It then must be refined and is eventually used for things such as gasoline. In the US transportation accounts for 70% of its oil use and 27% of greenhouse emissions. Dr. Ryan Barry from Rollins School of Public Health explains the health impacts of these emissions:

0:30 Total 12 second Voicer: Dr. Ryan: 16:13 – 16:25 (in tape)

He goes on to explain how asthma is caused by the nitrous oxides and other dangerous vapors being released that could impact human health. Oil spills are another huge danger with regular oil use. Gary Harper from the Environmental Protection Agency explains some of these risks:

0:51 Total 35 second Voicer: Gary Harper: 14:45 – 15:20 (in tape)

He explains that in the southeast regions the EPA respond to roughly fifty oil spills every year of various sizes. In addition, sometimes these spills lead to human evacuations. Despite the environmental and health risks associated with oil, the industry is still a prominent piece of American economy as Dr. Size explains:

1:11 Total 25 second Voicer : 20:00 – 20:25 (in tape)

Ultimately, the oil and natural gas industry provides America with 9.8 million jobs. Oil is a huge driver of US economy. Dr. Ryan elaborates further on some of the positives of this energy source.

1:26 Total 15 second Voicer: 7:37 – 7:52 (in tape)

Aubrey Tingler is a senior at Emory University in the Environmental Science Department. She has a different opinion about the oil industry:

1: 46 Total 11 second Voicer Aubrey Tingler: 1:47 – 1:58

Earlier this year President Barack Obama vetoed the Keystone XL Pipeline, highlighting the controversy over oil us in the US. This pipeline would have completed the last 60% of a project that had started over a year ago, running an oil pipeline from Alberta Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. It would shuttle 830,000 barrels of oil a day. Dr. Yandle, a professor in the Environmental Science Department at Emory University argues that this was a poor decision, because the alternative method of transportation is by rail. She explains that trains that have poor safety records, and actually produce more carbon emissions just getting the oil to the refiners and it’s less efficient:

2:10 Total 14 second Voicer Dr. Yandle: 1:41 – 1:55

Dr. Ryan disagrees, and believes that the veto was a good decision. The pipeline would run through the Ogallala Aquifer in the Midwest, which would use large amounts of water and also cause possible sources of pollution. Opinions are still polarized on this issue. Ultimately, in order to prevent climate change the use of oil is limited. Tingler has the final thoughts on this:

2:30 Total 30 second Voicer Aubrey Tingler: 2:14 – 2:45

Finish exactly at 3:00

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