STATEMENT: President Trump’s support for Southeast drilling moratorium is a step forward in work to protect Georgia’s coast from drilling

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Still, more action is needed to keep Georgia’s beaches safe for years to come

Environment Georgia

Atlanta, GA. — The Trump administration announced Tuesday it is endorsing a 10-year drilling moratorium extension off Georgia’s coast. Environment Georgia has worked for decades to protect the Georgia coastline from the threat of dirty and dangerous offshore drilling. 

Previously, the Trump administration published a first draft of a five-year drilling plan that opened  all of the state’s coastal waters to drilling. Now, this announcement is a reversal of the administration’s previous plans, as it relates to Atlantic waters off the coast of South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and the Eastern Gulf. The administrative action formally withdrawing the 2018 drilling plan is still required. Environment Georgia further recommends the adoption of the Coastal and Marine Economies Protection Act (H.R. 1941), which passed the House last September but must pass the Senate and would make protections permanent.

Jennette Gayer, state director of Environment Georgia, released the following statement: 

“By extending the moratorium on drilling in the Southeast Atlantic, the administration has begun to recognize Georgians opposition to drilling off our coast and our strong support for preserving our beaches and marine life for generations to come. 

“At the same time we must not let this action distract us from serious-minded efforts to pass a permanent ban on drilling that will ensure Georgia’s beaches and salt marsh stay safe from oil spills forever. We hope today’s White House announcement signals an intent to push the Senate to pass the measure supported by a bipartisan majority of the House. 

“Drilling off our coasts could devastate Georgia’s marine ecosystems and our way of life. Because we know when we drill, we spill. ”