Donald Trump has officially had enough of Barack Obama’s ridiculous offshore drilling bans.
Bloomberg reported that President Trump is preparing to open the door to oil companies for more offshore drilling with an upcoming executive order. This order will push the Interior Department to schedule sales of new offshore oil and natural gas rights in U.S. Atlantic and Arctic waters. An industry representative close to the situation said it will amend a five-year Obama administration leasing plan that left out auctions there.
Trump’s latest order will begin the process of revoking Obama’s decision to indefinitely withdraw most U.S. Arctic waters and some Atlantic Ocean acreage from future leasing. This is a major victory for all those that have long touted the potential benefits of offshore drilling.
Back in March, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said that “opening more federal lands and waters to oil and gas drilling” was a pillar of Trump’s plan to make the United States “energy independent.”
However, some think that Trump’s challenge of Obama’s decision will not make it through the courts.
“The administration can stare all day at the statute Obama used to protect large parts of the Arctic and Atlantic, but they won’t find a syllable allowing Trump to revoke those protections. Neither will the courts,” said Niel Lawrence, Alaska director for the Natural Resources Defense Council. “It’s hard to imagine riskier, more expensive or time-consuming places to look for oil. It would be an extraordinary misuse of public dollars and agency resources to try to open them up now.”
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