House to Vote on Banning Offshore Drilling in Almost All US Waters

September 6, 2019 by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON – The House will vote next week on a trio of bills that would effectively block all new offshore oil and gas drilling in the waters around the United States.

In a letter to House members, Democratic House Leader Steny Hoyer said “while much of our work remains bottled up in the Republican-led Senate … it is important that our constituents know that we are continuing to fight for the people.”

Toward that end, Hoyer said the drilling ban bills, both of which have significant bipartisan support “will help protect our environment and the economies of coastal communities that rely on tourism, outdoor recreation, and fishing.”

The vote is currently expected to be held on Sept. 11.

H.R. 205, the Protecting and Securing Florida’s Coastline Act of 2019, introduced by Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Fla., would permanently extend the moratorium on offshore oil and gas exploration in the eastern Gulf of Mexico off Florida.

H.R. 1941, the Coastal and Marine Economies Protection Act, sponsored by Rep. Joe Cunningham, D-S.C., would prevent the Secretary of the Interior from including any drilling off the Pacific or Atlantic coasts in its offshore oil and gas leasing plan.

A third bill, H.R. 1146, the Arctic Cultural and Coastal Plain Protection Act, introduced by Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., would prohibit drilling on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge’s coastal plain.

The House Natural Resources Committee advanced all of the bills in June. Earlier this year the House included a year-long moratorium on drilling activities in these areas in the Interior Department’s FY2020 budget.

In a blog post, Alexandra Adams, legislative director of the nature program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said “governors up and down our coasts, and Republicans and Democrats alike, have told the administration that we don’t want to risk our oceans, coastal economies and communities to the dangers of drilling. Communities and citizens from every coast have weighed in.

“These bills will protect those oceans—and the communities, economies, and ecosystems they support—from risky drilling,” Adams said. “The majority of Americans and hundreds of coastal communities, and countless businesses have all voiced their strong opposition to drilling off of their coasts, and these bills directly address those concerns permanently.” 

Meanwhile, in an email blast to supporters, Brooke Still, director of digital strategy at the League of Conservation Voters, described H.R. 205 and H.R. 1941 as “must-pass bills to protect our coasts.”

“Together, these are the most significant federal votes against offshore drilling and seismic testing in decades,” she said.

Environment

23 States Sue Trump Administration to Keep California's Auto Emission Rules State News
23 States Sue Trump Administration to Keep California's Auto Emission Rules
September 20, 2019
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON — California and 22 other states sued the Trump administration Friday to stop it from revoking the authority of The Golden State to set emission standards for cars and trucks. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed the lawsuit against the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration... Read More

Candidates Expound On Climate Change Fight at Georgetown/MSNBC Forum 2020 Elections
Candidates Expound On Climate Change Fight at Georgetown/MSNBC Forum
September 20, 2019
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - Andrew Yang could hardly contain himself. A day after he surprised a group of Georgetown University students by joining their pick-up basketball game, Yang had taken just three steps onto the stage at the university's Healy Hall Thursday morning when he impulsively jumped into... Read More

Feds Seek Expanded Habitat Protection As Salmon, Orcas Battle Climate Change Climate
Feds Seek Expanded Habitat Protection As Salmon, Orcas Battle Climate Change

SEATTLE — Most of the outer coast of Washington, Oregon and California would become protected habitat for southern resident orcas under a federal proposal released Wednesday. The new designation, if approved would greatly expand the area considered “critical” for the survival of the endangered orcas that... Read More

Border Wall Said to Threaten 22 Archaeological Sites in Arizona In The News
Border Wall Said to Threaten 22 Archaeological Sites in Arizona

WASHINGTON — The construction of President Donald Trump’s border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border could damage — or even destroy — up to 22 archaeological sites at the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in Arizona, according to a report from the National Park Service that was... Read More

New Democrat Coalition Releases Priorities for U.S. Climate Policy Climate
New Democrat Coalition Releases Priorities for U.S. Climate Policy
September 19, 2019
by TWN Staff

WASHINGTON -  The New Democrat Coalition released policy principles and endorsed legislation to combat climate change Wednesday, seeking to "address the climate challenge with the urgency the crisis demands" and further their belief the U.S. is best positioned to be the global leader in the effort.... Read More

Trump Revokes Rule Allowing Calif. to Set Stricter Auto Emission Standards Environment
Trump Revokes Rule Allowing Calif. to Set Stricter Auto Emission Standards

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is expected Wednesday to revoke a decades-old rule that empowers California to set tougher car emissions standards than those required by the federal government — putting the state and the administration on a path to years of fighting in court. The... Read More

Straight From The Well
scroll top