Outlook So, the US interior department has launched an urgent review of Arctic offshore drilling operations after the grounding of Shell's Kulluk oil rig off the coast of Alaska last week. Presumably the first thing they will acknowledge is that this was effectively a shipping rather than a drilling accident, though political momentum is against the oil giant.
This is a shame as what happened is certainly not akin to BP's Gulf of Mexico disaster in 2010, which killed 11 people and has cost the company an absolute fortune in money and reputation.
However, the other way the two situations are not comparable is in the climates of the two areas of operation. The Gulf of Mexico is hot, so the oil does at least evaporate, something that couldn't happen in the frozen Arctic.