Green Groups Vow to Fight Trump's "Reckless Giveaway to Big Oil"

Toby Manning
May 7, 2017

In another move to overturn Barack Obama's legacy, President Trump Friday signed an executive order that will begin a review of existing regulations on offshore drilling for oil and natural gas.

Speaking to media, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said that the review will result in an executive order named the America-First Offshore Energy Strategy. The Obama administration instated this rule using the 1953 Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, which the administration thought would be more hard for Trump's administration to undo than if Obama had simply signed an executive order prohibiting the drilling.

Menendez spoke at a Capitol press conference where he also announced he would reintroduce legislation to ban all drilling in the Atlantic, citing the threat of an oil spill on the Jersey Shore.

"I have long warned against drilling in the Mid-Atlantic region, which would put at risk some of the nation's most sensitive coastal and marine resources, including those off New Jersey". Drilling in Arctic waters is risky and there's no proven way to clean sea ice from potential oil spills, Pyne says. The order also intends to review oil and gas development in marine sanctuaries in the Pacific and Atlantic. The order could also open offshore exploration off the coasts of Virginia and North and SC.

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This morning the president stated the order allows for the creation of thousands of high paying American energy jobs.

In addition, the order will direct Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to review previous presidents' designations of marine sanctuaries and national monuments under the 1906 Antiquities Act over the last 10 years. "But the federal government has kept 94 per cent of these offshore areas closed for exploration and production", Xinhua news agency quoted Trump as saying at a White House signing ceremony.

Miller added: "President Trump may try to roll back presidential withdrawals from the last administration and open new areas to drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans despite millions of Americans asking for the Arctic and Atlantic to be protected". In a release, the White House argued that it potentially could be tapped for up to 90 billion barrels of oil and more than 300 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered natural gas deposits. At the time, Obama administration lawyers said they were confident that move would be upheld in court. "I urge the Trump administration to reverse course and put the well-being of our coastal communities above oil industry profits". Among those actions are a move to reopen and maintain hundreds of USA coal mines, an attempt to scrap fuel mileage regulations for future American-made vehicles, and the revocation of a federal law that targeted corruption in the energy industry. "Spills don't just devastate ecosystems - local economies that depend on the health of our environment and clean water also feel extreme pain", said Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla.

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