From Congress to the Oregon Governor's Office, concerns are mounting about President Trump's moves to open offshore drilling along the Pacific Coast.
U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement after Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced plans to allow oil and gas exploration off the Pacific Coast. The move reverses a decades-long ban that protected the West Coast from oil and gas drilling.
“Just a week after the Trump administration proposed to eliminate critical offshore drilling safety and environmental protections, Zinke now wants to open nearly the entire United States’ coast to drilling," Wyden said in a statement released Thursday, Jan. 4. "With America more energy secure now than ever, President fear-mongering and falsehoods about our country’s energy supply reveal a shameless agenda to prop up oil and gas industries at the expense of coastal fishing, recreation economies and the environment."
Wyden said he will never stop fighting to keep in place the widely supported, decades-long ban on oil and gas drilling off the coast of Oregon and all along the West Coast.
Wyden is a cosponsor of the West Coast Ocean Protection Expansion Act, which would permanently ban offshore drilling on the outer continental shelf of Oregon, Washington and California. He has long been a supporter of the current ban on drilling off the West Coast.
In a joint statement issued Thursday, Jan. 4, Oregon Governor Kate Brown, California Governor Jerry Brown, and Washington Governor Jay Inslee expressed their concerns following the announcement that the U.S. Department of Interior will seek to open the Pacific Coast to oil and gas offshore drilling for the first time in decades.
The following is that joint statement.
“This political decision to open the magnificent and beautiful Pacific coast waters to oil and gas drilling flies in the face of decades of strong opposition on the part of Oregon, Washington, and California – Republicans and Democrats alike.
They’ve chosen to forget the utter devastation of past offshore oil spills to wildlife and to the fishing, recreation and tourism industries in our states. They’ve chosen to ignore the science that tells us our climate is changing and we must reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. But we won’t forget history or ignore science.
For more than 30 years, our shared coastline has been protected from further federal drilling and we’ll do whatever it takes to stop this reckless, short-sighted action.”
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