Time and time again, California is a leader in rejecting the Trump administration’s destructive, polluting agenda—most recently seen by passage of two new state laws to block offshore drilling infrastructure off of California’s coast.
These laws stem from a January 2018 proposal from Trump’s Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to make 90 percent of offshore waters open to drilling—even though more than 94 percent are off-limits. The plan targets dozens of coastal states, including California, with nearly 50 proposed lease sales around the country.
Further, the proposal is built on the presumption that the federal government can drill and mine state waters without states’ consent, ignoring the interests of state governments, nearby communities, wildlife and local economies .
This unfathomable reversal of protections for our public waters is a blatant giveaway to the oil and gas industry that is, unsurprisingly, massively unpopular.
To stand up for their states’ waters, State Senator Hannah Beth Jackson and Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi introduced SB 834 and AB 1775, respectively, to keep new oil drilling of the state’s coasts.
Hundreds of Friends of the Earth members called their state legislators, urging them to support these important bills, and we went to Sacramento to march and voice our strong opposition to Zinke’s plan. Thanks to the outpouring of public input, the bills were passed by the state legislature and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown!
California’s laws are an important and concrete step toward blocking the Trump administration’s pro-oil agenda, and we encourage other states to push back and send a clear message that our country’s coasts are not for sale.
Congress is introducing legislation to fill our oceans with industrial fish farms—which are essentially floating factory farms. This industry devastates ocean ecosystems, public health and local economies. It has no place in US waters.