North Carolina Governor announces opposition to offshore drilling

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper stands with elected officials from Nags Head, Kure Beach, Bald Head Island, and Southport as he announces his position against offshore drilling and seismic blasting in the Atlantic. (© Mike McHugh/The Daily News)

Today North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said he had four words on offshore drilling: Not on our coast.

His announcement brings him in line with South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster and Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, who both recently stated their opposition to seismic blasting and offshore drilling. Beyond the many constituents urging them to protect our coast from federal efforts to reopen the possibility of offshore drilling in the Atlantic, they recognize the harm it would do to state economies and environments.

“This is a game changer. Presidents have long deferred to what the states want in deciding whether coasts should be opened to risky offshore drilling. President Trump should do the same,” said Senior Attorney Sierra Weaver. “North Carolina has spoken, as have the Governors of other states, and towns and cities up and down the Atlantic coast. It’s time for Washington to listen.”

Just this week, Norfolk City Council unanimously passed a resolution against drilling. This followed a recent similar decision by Virginia Beach’s City Council, which represents the largest city in the Commonwealth.

In each of these cases, the irreparable harm to coasts and the tourism they bring communities, the impact on ecosystems, and the objections of the U.S. Navy were all cited as factors in deciding to stand against the Trump administration’s efforts to pursue offshore drilling and seismic blasting in the Atlantic.

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