April 28, 2017
By Kevin Green
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Two groups held a protest Friday afternoon over President Donald Trump’s offshore drilling order.
The Southern Environmental Law Center and Business Alliance for Protecting the Atlantic Coast said in a news release they were rallying against Trump’s desire to open the Atlantic Coast to drilling.
The Associated Press reports Trump signed an executive order Friday to roll back restrictions on oil drilling in the Arctic. Of the order, Trump said, “Today we’re unleashing American energy and clearing the way for thousands and thousands of high-paying energy jobs.”
The order instructs Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to review a plan dictating which federal sites are open to drilling.
The Resort City’s tourism industry has been opposed to offshore drilling for many years.
The Virginia Beach City Council also issued a memo against it. They worry that the structures that could line the horizon would be unsightly, making the Oceanfront less attractive. Council also fears what would happen if there were an oil spill that would close the beach and contaminate the waterways and ultimately cause a decline in tourism money.
“We will fight every effort to jeopardize the 12,500 tourism jobs clean sands and clear water and we will fight every effort to line there pockets of petroleum executives $244 million in local tourism salary,” said Laura Habr of the Business Alliance for Protecting the Atlantic Coast.
Retired Navy Capt. Joe Bouchard said in a news release that the possibility of offshore drilling in the United States would be a “direct threat to our national security” as well.