The problem with researching this question is that you can find surveys and statistics to favor any opinion regarding offshore drilling. With the vast number of public opinion pollsters, it is difficult to gauge who is legitimate.
What I have found, however, is that many Americans do not favor an increase in oil prices, and feel that offshore drilling (whether it be already in place, or new endeavors) is one way to ensure that prices remain somewhat constant.
I hope this is helpful.
Approximately one-third of US domestic oil production comes from offshore. The alternatives to using that oil are 1) far, far less oil to use (a reduction of about 10% or more of our total consumption), and 2) importing far more than we do now. The idea of replacing these oil sources with onshore oil is not viable; the US is by far the most drilled nation on earth and most if not all of the significant onshore oil fields have been found (a few possibilities exist, but they cannot account for 10% of consumption). It would be interesting to know how Americans felt about offshore drilling if they really understood the above.
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