Op-Ed: Trump thinks we will allow drilling along the Atlantic Coast

Posted May 11, 2017 by Karen Graham
On Wednesday, the Trump administration took its first step on opening the Atlantic Coast to oil and gas drilling. The Interior Department is now reviewing six applications submitted by energy companies previously rejected by the Obama administration.
Shell U.K. Ltd.
The reversal of President Obama's stance on drilling along the Atlantic Coast of the United States is again, nothing new with the Trump administration's ongoing campaign to strip the federal government of everything to do with Obama.
However, this latest move, with the Interior Department announcing they were reviewing six previously rejected applications for permission to conduct seismic testing, is going to create a firestorm of resistance the current administration will have a hard time ignoring.
The applications for seismic surveying off the Atlantic Coast were previously submitted by TGS Nopec Geophysical Company ASA, GX Technology Corp, WesternGeco Ltd, CGG Services Inc, Spectrum Geo and Petroleum Geo-Services ASA, according to Reuters.
The oil and gas industry has been pushing for years to be allowed to conduct the tests which they say could map potential drilling sites. There have been no surveys done along the Atlantic coast over the past 30 years, and the new testing is expected to be limited to along the coasts of Virginia, North and South Carolina, and Georgia.
Are we ready for a repeat of the battle to stop testing?
In March 2016, Digital Journal ran the story announcing the Obama administration's next five-year offshore drilling plan that would "protect the Atlantic for future generations."
When Interior Secretary Sally Jewell made the announcement, it was a reversal of a previously outlined plan in January 2015 by the Obama administration that would permit seismic testing along the Atlantic Coast in preparation for oil and gas drilling.
But let's review the history behind what happened to change Obama's mind - Literally, thousands upon thousands of people spoke up, and for once, the government heard their voices. Jewell even mentioned this in her announcement of the ban, citing the concerns of citizens from New England on down to Florida who had spoken out, saying, "No drilling."
Thursday morning, an editorial in the Virginia-Pilot suggested that President Trump's recollection of history shows his ignorance, or perhaps, his dismissive attitude over past experiences when making the decision to open the Atlantic Coast to drilling.
The Virginia-Pilot points out: "As usual, the president is driven by ideology and assumption rather than fact. Because opening coastal areas of the Atlantic to oil exploration would be a tremendous mistake"
The president's advisers need to bone up on history, too, because it was the Pentagon that held a lot of sway in Obama's decision to not allow drilling. The huge population along the East Coast is one thing, but the multiple-use conflicts, such as Department of Defense and NASA activities or commercial and recreational fishing, and habitat needs for marine life and wildlife were also important considerations.
Bottom line? We had all better get ready for another fight because Trump does not like anyone telling him "No."