At the time, Pres. Trump signed the executive order America First Offshore Energy Strategy. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is responsible for reviewing the current five-year development plan on the Outer Continental Shelf for offshore oil and gas exploration. The order also required him to review the regulations and permitting process for development and seismic research.
Rep. Sanford introduced a bill to suspend oil drilling off the East Coast
According to Sen. Nelson, the prospect of oil drilling operation off the Atlantic Coast faces bipartisan opposition. Lawmakers particularly those representing tourism-dependent states are afraid a spill could tar beach-side economies. They are also concerned about its impact on aquatic habitats.
In response to the President’s order, Rep. Mark Sanford of South Carolina introduced a bill to suspend offshore drilling and all related activities in the waters off the East Coast for the next decade.
“One of every ten jobs in South Carolina comes from tourism. This means $13 billion in impact every year to our coastal counties alone. Drilling would put this economic driver at risk,” said Rep. Sanford.