Members of Congress introduced legislation to expand offshore drilling off the Mid- and South Atlantic coasts. The proposal underscores the need for coastal advocates to tell their federal representatives to oppose new oil drilling in our oceans.
Senator Thom Tillis and Senator Richard Burr, both from North Carolina, filed an amendment to the Keystone XL pipeline bill requiring the White House to include the Mid- and South-Atlantic in the upcoming 5 Year Drilling Offshore Drilling Program for 2017 to 2022. The ammendment would also provide oil and gas revenue sharing for adjacent states, diverting funds from the federal treasury and incentivizing those states to support risky drilling off their shores.
Expanding offshore drilling into the Atlantic would damage the marine ecosystem, as well as industries such as tourism, fishing, and recreation. It would also reinforce our dependence on fossil fuels and increase carbon pollution. If we are serious about stopping climate change, the last thing the Senate should do is support more oil and gas development off our coasts.
Finally, the amendment would divert funding from the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund, which provides funds across America to conserve special places and promote recreation.
As federal and state leaders have been pushing to open the Atlantic to drilling, Surfrider chapters have been rallying opposition at the grassroots level and passing local resolutions against seismic testing and offshore drilling.
Schedule of Public Hearings (for more info and to RSVP click here)
Washington, DC – February 9th 2:00-7:00 PM, Embassy Suites Washington DC – Convention Center 900 10th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001
Norfolk, VA – February 11th 3:00-7:00 PM, Sheraton Norfolk Waterside, 777 Waterside Drive, Norfolk, VA 23505
Wilmington, NC – February 17th 3:00-7:00 PM, Blockade Runner Beach Resort 275, Waynick Blvd, Wilmington, NC 28480
Jacksonville, FL – February 19th 3:00-7:00 PM, Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront, 225 East Coastline Drive, Jacksonville, FL 32202
Annapolis, MD – March 9th 3:00-7:00 PM, Loews Hotel Annapolis, 126 West Street, Annapolis, MD 21401
Charleston, SC – March 11th 2015 3:00-7:00 PM, Wyndham Garden Mount Pleasant/Charleston, 1330 Stuart Engals Boulevard, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
Surfrider’s Not the Answer campaign is focused on opposing the expansion of offshore drilling in the United States. Surfrider chapters across the country are advocating for legislation and agency decisions that will prohibit the exploration, development, or production of oil and gas in state and federal waters. Current priorities of the Not the Answer campaign include: 1) Influencing the upcoming Five Year OCS Drilling Plan for 2017-2022; 2) Opposing federal legislation that would expand offshore drilling into new areas; 3) Opposing proposed seismic exploration for oil and gas resources off the Mid- and South Atlantic coasts; 4) Supporting state and federal moratoria on offshore oil and gas development; 5) Participating in Hands Across the Sand events to demonstrate grassroots support for protecting our coasts from offshore drilling.
The Surfrider Foundation is deeply dismayed by these actions. We are strongly opposed to the expansion of offshore drilling off the Atlantic ocean. It is a dirty and dangerous practice that threatens the health of our oceans and coastal communities.
Oil and gas development in the Atlantic would require seismic surveys, drilling operations, oil transport by tankers, and the installation of platforms, pipelines, and other infrastructure. Collectively these activities would significantly damage both the environment and related economies, while exposing the East Coast to the risk of a catastrophic oil spill.
On behalf of more than 250,000 Surfrider Foundation members and supporters, including 25 local chapters from Maine to Florida who vigorously oppose offshore drilling in the Atlantic, we call upon the Obama Administration to cancel plans for offshore drilling in the Atlantic Ocean.