Should the government clamp a moratorium on new offshore oil and natural gas drilling? In a word – yes. Yes, this administration should immediately extend the current “suspension” on new offshore oil drilling. Yes, that moratorium should be expanded to include current and planned drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico – where according to the New York Times, “at least seven new permits for various types of drilling and five environmental waivers have been granted” since President Obama ordered a suspension of new drilling on April 30. Yes, the moratorium should most certainly include the fragile Arctic seas, where Shell still plans to start drilling as early as this July, and the East Coast, parts of which President Obama opened to exploratory drilling earlier this year.
Shell Oil plans to move forward with a dangerous scheme to begin exploratory drilling in the remote Chukchi Sea, even in the face of this unprecedented environmental catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico.
Elizabeth Fleming, Defenders of Wildlife’s Florida Representative, talks about potential impacts of the Gulf oil disaster on Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge.
Laurie Macdonald, Florida Program Director for Defenders of Wildlife, talks with refuge managers at St. Vincent National Wildlife Refuge about potential impacts of the Gulf offshore oil drilling disaster… and what they are doing to protect the plovers and other wildlife that rely on this refuge.
One month after the Gulf oil spill disaster began, 14 major environmental groups joined together on a letter asking President Obama to ban offshore drilling in places off U.S. coasts that are not currently being drilled. One month after the BP Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, the well is continuing to gush thousands of barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico. The groups called on the President to reverse his previously announced policy of expanding drilling off Florida, the Atlantic coast and Alaska and instead ban drilling in these places. The President has the authority to ban drilling in new areas through a Presidential withdrawal.