This is it: News reports say the final Atlantic Drilling plan could be released THIS WEEK. Donate to help us get ready to stop Atlantic drilling, save whales and protect our climate!
The Obama administration opened the door to a new generation of offshore drilling along the East Coast in 2015, when it released a draft plan for selling oil and gas leases in 104 million acres of Atlantic. Now, the administration is preparing to release the next version of its plan, maybe as soon as this week!1 If that's true, we're about to take a penultimate step -- and the coastline is still up for grabs.
Coastal communities up and down the Atlantic Coast could see disaster even if the rigs are more than 50 miles offshore. Fearful of repeating the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, at least 106 Southeastern coastal towns have passed resolutions urging the Interior Department not to move ahead. More than 80 East Coast state legislators and the owners of about 1,000 coastal businesses have signed letters to Obama opposing the drilling.2 And we've played a big role too -- organizing hundreds of thousands of comments and signatures to oppose offshore drilling and seismic testing, and taking out full page ads in leading South Carolina papers to say so.3
When the final plan is released, we need to be ready with a new round of outreach and education. Either to defend a plan that keeps drilling off our coasts and out of the Atlantic; Or to push back hard and defeat it if BOEM stays the course and permits oil and gas drilling off the Atlantic coast. Can you chip in $15 or more to make sure we're ready to fight, whatever the tide brings in this week?
The Obama administration has been reworking its plan to open the southern Atlantic Coast to offshore oil exploration because of strong opposition from the Pentagon, which says the oil activity could hurt military maneuvers and tests the U.S. Navy relies on to protect the coast.4
While most U.S. waters are technically open for oil and gas development, the activity can only take place on tracts sold under the government’s leasing plan, which takes years to assemble. Lease sales that are included can still be canceled later, but once territory is ruled out, it can’t get back in.2 That means we could win big this week -- in which case we'll need to defend the decision by land and by sea; Or we could be in for a long, hard fight to save the Atlantic coast one drilling lease at a time. Either way, we need your help to get ready.
Help us stop drilling and the expanded use of seismic testing, which could devastate marine life harm fisheries and wreck coastal economies. Please donate $15 or $25 or more to help us stop Atlantic drilling.
Thank you for everything you do,
Sally and the Save the Whales and Our Oceans Team at Environmental Action
1. Eric Wolff. All aboard for Interior's offshore proposal. Politico. March 14 2016.
2. Timothy Cama. Offshore drilling proposal expected soon. The Hill. March 14 2016.
3. Environmental Action, New Ad says NO to Atlantic Drilling, Seismic testing off South Carolina Coast, February 26, 2016
4. Darryl Fears. Obama’s Atlantic oil drilling plan takes friendly fire — from the Pentagon. The Washington Post. March 14. 2016