President Trump has opened nearly all federal waters to oil and gas exploration. But if he is going to risk America's coastal waters — and the vital local economies and complex ecosystems they support — shouldn't he want the same for his private members-only club, Mar a Lago, and its guests?
The president has proposed opening Arctic waters to drilling, threatening vital habitat for imperiled polar bears. He's looking to industrialize the California coast, vital waters for sea lions, whales, sea otters, sharks, sea turtles and other marine animals. And he's looking to expand drilling activities up and down the east coast and along the Gulf of Mexico.
According to the government's own figures, just one aspect of the drive to drill — deafening seismic blasts used in oil and gas exploration — could kill as many as 138,000 dolphins, whales, sea turtles, and other marine wildlife if offshore drilling is expanded off the Atlantic coast.
And anyone who remembers the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil disaster knows the perils of offshore drilling. The tragedy, one of the largest in US history, claimed the lives of 11 employees, destroyed the local fishing industry and created an eco-disaster whose impacts still linger.
In a more reasonable world, the president would be committing to cleaner, greener energy sources that create jobs — not doubling down on risky drilling that threatens wildlife and the climate.
However, if the president is asking us to sacrifice the lives of some of our most beloved marine animals for the sake of more dirty drilling off our coasts, then he should be willing to give something up too. If he thinks lining our coasts with offshore platforms is safe, then areas off Mar a Lago should be the very first to experience the president's drive to drill.
Urge the president put his money where his mouth is for dangerous offshore drilling and fracking. Please sign my petition now.