Last Thursday Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced a proposal that would mark the biggest increase in offshore drilling in US history. If successful this would open up 90% of our total outer continental shelf acreage and over 98% of undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas in federal offshore areas available for future development.
Here is the map of their proposal:
This is the current map from the Obama era bans:
Pacific, Atlantic, Gulf, and Arctic.
Everything is up for grabs.
Even areas in California and the East coast that have been closed to offshore drilling for decades will be open.
This isn’t being done to please Trump’s constituents.
Governors of coastal states like North Carolina, South Caroline, Virginia, New Jersey, Maryland, Oregon, and California explicitly oppose drilling off of their coast.
Even Trump supporter and Florida Governor, Rick Scott opposes drilling off of his coast. Scott requested to meet with Zinke to discuss this plan and “the crucial need to remove Florida from consideration”.
Coastal communities like those in Florida depend on the jobs and revenue that are totally dependent on a healthy Ocean. Scott does not want to risk everything they have by working with an industry that threatens to destroy them for significantly fewer jobs and money.
Watch this video by the Surfrider Foundation to explain this economic dependence we have on the ocean.
To repeat some of the key statistics in that video:
In the best-case scenario, targeted reserves in the Atlantic will provide 6 months of oil at our current rate of consumption. Meanwhile, studies show that in places like North Carolina offshore wind alone can provide twice as many jobs as oil and 130% of the state’s energy needs.
12 times more jobs are provided by Ocean rec and tourism.
$115 billion of national economic revenue is at risk if an oil spill occurs.
“The politicians who say they want to do this, the industry execs who say they want to do this don’t have to worry about not eating when things go wrong. They will still get a paycheck. They won’t wait five years like BP. They won’t wait 18 years like the Valdez. They will go back to work and not have to worry about it. People on the coast will have a very long, difficult, painful situation to deal with” – Matt Walker (Co-Chair, Outer Banks Chapter Surf Rider Foundation)
BP’s Deepwater Horizon spill damaged 1,313 miles of coastline. That’s more than the entire coast of California.
This is not a gift to the American people. It is a gift to Big Oil and we are covering the bill.
The department of the interior’s twitter bio says “Protecting America’s Great Outdoors and Powering Our Future”.
Zinke needs to wake up and do his job.
Stay Involved, Up Coming Events:
JAN 16-FEB 28: PUBLIC HEARINGS ON 5 YEAR OFFSHORE DRILLING PROGRAM
FEB 15-FEB 16: OCEAN RECREATION HILL DAY IN WASHINGTON D.C.
MAY 19: HANDS ACROSS THE SAND