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| Tue Feb. 20, 2001 4:00 AM EST

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Big oil's big schemes

Many environmental groups have voiced fierce opposition to President Bush's plan to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling. But COUNTERPUNCH reports that the ANWR controversy may have distracted activists from the oil-industry's bigger plans.

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The industry, with generous help from George W. Bush, has promoted the idea that an oil shortage is partly responsible for energy problems on the West Coast; yet, as The Oregonian recently discovered, BP has been dumping plentiful Alaskan crude cheaply overseas to keep oil prices artificially high in the US.

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And oil companies may not be satisfied with a shot at the Wildlife Refuge, which is relatively small potatoes. The industry is more interested in getting its drills into offshore "deepwater" sites and the pristine National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, both of which promise to yield far more black gold than the Wildlife Refuge.

Read COUNTERPUNCH article here.

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