Issued April 28, 2017
This Executive Order issued by President Trump instructs his cabinet officials to open millions of acres of federally administered waters for energy development. The move will begin to reverse President Obama’s attempts to keep the U.S. waters from lease sales to fossil fuel companies and overturns overturned Obama-era regulations barring companies from drilling in the Arctic. “Past administrations have been overly restrictive of offshore energy exploration and have taken off the table hundreds of millions of offshore acres for development. As a result, 94 percent of the Outer Continental Shelf is off-limits to responsible energy development,” the administration said in a statement. LEARN MORE
While Trump’s EO will open major swaths of land for oil and gas drilling, lengthy legal processes and low global energy prices make investment unlikely in the short term. The inevitable threat of drilling, however, worries environmental groups; Earth Justice President Trip Van Noppen argues that “Trump’s short-sighted order reverses climate progress and imperils coastal communities, irreplaceable wildlife and our shared future.” Jamie Williams, president of the Wilderness Society, explains that “the chance of a tragic spill in those remote, icy waters is simply too high, and the impacts to marine life and the pristine coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge could be devastating.” LEARN MORE
- Natural Resources Defense Council – a nonprofit international environmental advocacy group committed to fighting Trump’s “environmental assault” and using “every tool in the kit to stop this dangerous tar sands oil pipeline project.”
- Greenpeace – an international environmental NGO that uses direct action, lobbying, research, and ecotage to raise public awareness and to influence the public and private sectors.
- Sierra Club – the nation’s largest environmental preservation organization; recent focuses include green energy, mitigating global warming, and opposing coal.
This brief was compiled by Vaibhav Kumar. If you have comments or want to add the name of your organization to this brief please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.