Using MLA style documentation, write a researched paper arguing for or against permitting oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Your paper should have these recognizable parts:
1. An introduction, in which you state your paper’s thesis — what you are arguing for and the main reasons you hold that view.
2. A body, in which you make your argument through a combination of evidence from sources and your own logical reasoning (your body should include in-text citations wherever you reference sources).
3. A conclusion, in which you refer back to your reasons and restate your position.
4. A Works Cited page , in which you follow MLA citation format to list sources used.
Background to the Issue: See attached sheet for a list of some frequently-made arguments for and against drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. (Note: PICK JUST ONE OR TWO of these to focus your paper’s argument on. You can’t do a good job in a short paper if you try to cover them all.)
Source requirements: Use a minimum of four relevant sources. And because one of this assignment’s goals is to practice considering opposing views, at least one of these sources must make an argument counter to your own argument. Summarize the counter argument and offer evidence and reasoning to explain why you don’t find it convincing.
When you use a source in your paper, give some indication as to why you find it to be credible. To do this, you will have to know something about the source. We will discuss source evaluation in the lab tomorrow.
Use MLA format in citing sources both inside your paper and at the end of your paper.
When you use a source in your paper, remember these guidelines:
1. Choose sources that help you make your argument, and integrate information from them into your own argument (to choose well, you will need to look at many more than the required number of sources). (Remember that one source must be representative of an opposing view.)
2. Explain why the information from each source seems credible to you.
3. It is usually better to put information from a source into your own words than to quote it directly.
4. Whether you summarize or quote directly, you must not plagiarize. This means that a summary has to be completely in your own words and sentence structure, while a direct quote must be in the exact words of the original and enclosed inside quotation marks. Either way, the borrowed material must be cited both inside your paper and at the end. (A plagiarized paper cannot be a passing paper.)
Research Notes and Citation Rules: The core of a research paper is information from sources, so you should have a lot of carefully-taken notes. You will turn in all of your research notes with your paper. Notes must be written on index cards or on paper separate from printouts of articles or websites.
These are SOME (not all) of the arguments commonly made for and against permitting oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge:
• To ensure a reliable supply of oil, the United States needs as many domestic sources of oil as it can find.
• The Refuge holds a lot of oil.
• Drilling can be done in the Refuge without scarring much of the land.
• Drilling won’t harm wildlife in the area.
• Safety precautions will ensure against spills.
• Drilling will bring revenue to native peoples who live near or in the Refuge.
• All Alaskans will benefit from increased oil revenues.
• The 1002 area, where drilling is proposed, is just a small piece of the whole Refuge.
• The Refuge is one of the last true wilderness areas on earth, and it should be protected.
• Drilling will cause a decline of the Porcupine Caribou Herd who depend on it as a calving ground.
• Drilling will interfere with polar bear denning sites, adding to the stress these bears are already under from global warming-induced declines in sea ice that the bears need for hunting seals.
• Drilling will harm both migratory and breeding birds who use the Refuge.
• The unique geographic and vegetative features of the 1002 area make it essential to the breeding success of various species.
The safety record of the oil industry in Alaska has been and continues to be poor, and damaging spills would probably occur if drilling is allowed in the Refuge.
• While the land area taken up by the actual wells would be small, the roads that would have to be built to the wells and from wells to a pipeline would devastate the Refuge’s terrain.
• The warmer, shorter winters now occurring make road-building without environmental harm even less possible in the Refuge than before (because the ice road season is shorter).
• An infusion of workers and equipment into the Refuge would forever alter the landscape and wildlife there.
• While the amount of oil thought to be in the Refuge is vast in absolute terms, it is far less than even a year’s supply of what we currently use in the United States.
• In light of what we know about how release of greenhouse gases
from fossil fuels is making our planet literally unlivable, we should be channeling our research and money into alternative energy sources, not more oil.
• It would take ten years from the start of drilling to produce even the first drop of oil from the Refuge, so drilling there would do nothing to alleviate shortages or high gas prices now.
• Oil companies are privately owned and ship much of their oil overseas, so there is no guarantee that Refuge oil would even stay in this country.
• Drilling in the Refuge would deprive the Gwich’in people of their subsistence livelihood and culture, because the Gwich’in rely on hunting the caribou that pass by each year on their migration to the Refuge.
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