In March 2017, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) plans to offer for sale to Big Oil “all available acreage” (47 million acres) in the central Gulf of Mexico for offshore oil and gas drilling, and the agency’s draft five-year plan includes 10 regionwide lease sales to drill in the Gulf.
Meanwhile, Louisiana continues to struggle in the aftermath of historic flooding — what the Red Cross called “the worst disaster in the U.S. since Hurricane Sandy” — and the Gulf is still in recovery five-plus years after the BP Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling disaster that killed 11 people and spilled 4 million gallons of oil that killed wildlife and devastated Gulf Coast communities.
We need to keep fossil fuels in the ground, and stop treating the Gulf Coast like a sacrifice zone.
In the midst of a climate-fueled disaster, which will most gravely impact those already marginalized in our society, moving forward with this auction is a terrible idea.
In this moment, we need to stand with Gulf communities who have been resisting the fossil fuel industry for decades.
President Obama can allow the fossil fuel industry to carry on with business as usual, or he can stand with Louisiana residents who are living under a state of climate emergency. He can’t do both.
We call on President Obama to put a halt to all new offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.