American Littoral Society Joins Environmental and Business Leaders Join Rep. Pallone to Speak Out Against Plans for Drilling in the Atlantic
Asbury Park, NJ – On World Water Day, the American Littoral Society joined NJ Congress man Frank Pallone and others on the Asbury Park, NJ boardwalk to again speak out against Trump administration plans for drilling off the Atlantic coast.
In the coming weeks, the Trump Administration is expected to release a new plan for the National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program (National OCS Program) for 2019-2024 that will allow drilling for fossil fuels, which would bring the threat of hazardous potential oil spills that could affect the Jersey Shore.
At the rally, Rep. Pallone noted that the President’s offshore drilling plan requires congressional approval and pending lawsuits to halt the plan.
Speaking at the event, Helen Henderson, Ocean Program Manager for the American Littoral Society, said: "Drilling for more polluting fossil fuels does not put America first, it puts the health of our ocean and coast last, risking our economy and millions of jobs. A plan for more oil and gas is a plan to drown more of New Jersey in the rising waters of climate change."
This plan would expose the entire US coast to similar dangers and is an unacceptable risk to local communities, their coastal economies and marine life.
The Littoral Society has been flatly opposed to the plan to open the Atlantic to fossil fuel exploration and drilling since it was first announced.
"Where we drill, we spill," Society Executive Director Tim Dillingham has said in the past. "Too much is at stake to risk our ocean's health."
New Jersey alone generates $8 billion annually toward the US GDP and supports 124,000 jobs through economies dependent on a clean ocean and coast, including fishing, tourism, recreation. A spill could also put the state's $700 billion in coastal properties at risk.
This ill-conceived leasing plan puts our coastal communities, health, and national security in harm's way. Allowing this proposal to advance will put tourism economies at risk of being destroyed; leave historic fishing livelihoods one spill away from being shut down and devastated for years; and could cause decades of living and playing along our beautiful oil-free shores to be completely swept away by a dirty, polluting industry.
The American Littoral Society will continue to stand with those, such as Rep. Pallone, and others around the United States who oppose this dangerous proposal. The Society encourages its members and supporters to tell their elected representatives that America's publicly owned waters should be conserved and protected, not turned over to the oil industry.
"On World Water Day, there should be no doubt that from the halls of Trenton to the beaches of Sandy Hook and Cape May, that New Jersey’s citizens want our ocean waters protected, not opened to industrialization and noise pollution," Henderson said at the rally. "The American Littoral Society will continue to work with our elected representatives and partners to protect our New Jersey coast, communities, economies, and way of life."