Sanders Calls for Day One Action Plan on Offshore Drilling. Three other candidates fall just short of litmus test.


Date: September 4, 2019
From: South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce
Subject: Sanders Calls For Day One Action Plan on Offshore Drilling
Contact: Frank Knapp, President/CEO, 803-252-5733 (w), 803-600-6874 (c),

Columbia, SC—Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has recently released an extensive plan to move the nation to renewable sources of energy.  In that plan, Senator Sanders says that he “will immediately end all new and existing fossil fuel extraction on federal public lands.”

According to his campaign staff, the candidate commits to issuing an executive order on the first day in office in order to carry out this policy, which will also apply to federal waters.

The South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce (SCSBCC) commends Senator Sanders on his commitment to protecting the Atlantic Coast marine life and coastal economies dependent on tourism, commercial fishing and recreation.  The executive order on Day One is the essential action component that gives Atlantic Coast voters the confidence that aspirational words will be immediately turned into action.

“Now five of the 10 candidates who will be on stage September 12 in Houston, including the top three in the polls, have committed to this Day One action plan that would block offshore oil drilling in the Atlantic,” said Frank Knapp Jr., president and CEO of the SCSBCC.  The SCSBCC has been a leading business organization on the Atlantic Coast fighting the Trump Administration’s plan for offshore oil exploration and drilling in the Atlantic.

“In April of this year we proposed this Day One action plan as a litmus test that the Democratic candidates for President must pass ‘if they hope to be victorious in coastal states’.  Half of these candidates in the next debate—Biden, Booker, O’Rourke, Sanders and Warren—have passed this litmus test so far,” said Knapp.

Andrew Yang, Julian Castro and Kamala Harris have also recently released aggressive climate plans.  However, none of these candidates have clearly met the litmus test of committing to using an executive order on their first day in office to ban offshore drilling for oil in the Atlantic.  Should all three candidates clarify their positions to include an executive order on Day One, then 8 out of the 10 Democratic presidential candidates on Houston’s stage will pass the litmus test.

“As the list of Democratic Presidential candidates adopting the Day One action plan on offshore oil grows, big oil should take notice.  Their efforts to expand drilling permits on our public lands and waters will fail with a new Administration.  If the petroleum companies are concerned about their profits, they should stop spending their time and money pushing for exploration and drilling for oil in our Atlantic,” said Knapp.


The South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce is a statewide advocacy organization founded in 2000.  With over 10,000 small business and entrepreneur supporters, it has successfully worked to make South Carolina more small business friendly in areas such as healthcare, taxation, regulation, worker training, energy/conservation, workers’ compensation and economic development.





Scroll to Top