An oasis in a watery desert? Discourses on an industrial ecosystem in the Gulf of Mexico Rigs-to-Reefs program

History and Technology 25 (December 2009): 343-364.

This article explores how in the years after 1980 a spectrum of historical actors came to see petroleum platforms in the Gulf of Mexico as a necessary part of the Gulf ecosystem and how such views affected platform removal policies. Through a discourse analysis of the Rigs-to-Reefs program, in which old offshore petroleum facilities were converted into artificial reefs, this article examines how actors presented to the public their notions of the relationship of the Gulf ecosystem with technological offshore structures. Through this case we see how ideas of technology and nature were mutually constructed via discourses and what affect that had on policies.

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