Massachusetts ramps up opposition to planned offshore drilling expansion

The state of Massachusetts is ramping up its opposition to the US federal government’s plan for extensive expansion of offshore oil and gas drilling, according to the Associated Press.

Whereas numerous governors of coastal states have voiced their protest against the expanded drilling since it was announced in January, Massachusetts’ Attorney General Maura Healey says she is considering taking legal action to protect her citizenry from the potential detrimental effects of such drilling.

Healey filed comments with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), part of the Department of the Interior which is implementing the drilling expansion.

She detailed the threat offshore exploration and production would pose to Massachusetts fishing and tourism sectors in terms of potential for disastrous spills as well as the bigger-picture threat of contributing to climate change.

Just days after DOI Secretary Ryan Zinke announced the drilling expansion in January he said Florida could be exempt after that state’s governor Rick Scott made arguments about the possible harm to coastal industries.

That sparked a rush of claims by governors of almost all US coastal states that they too should be exempt.

Donal Scully

With 28 years experience writing and editing for newspapers in the UK and Hong Kong, Donal is now based in California from where he covers the Americas for Splash as well as ensuring the site is loaded through the Western Hemisphere timezone.
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