On Oct. 22, NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) under the Trump administration in Washington D.C came to Charleston to give locals, organizations, businesses, fisherman, scientists etc. the chance to plead their case against offshore drilling and the dire effects it has on Charleston’s coastline.
Oceana–a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting the world’s oceans and the creators of the South Carolina campaign “Don’t Drill SC”–sent senior campaign organizer Samantha Siegal to petition NOAA to reduce and stop offshore drilling.
“Our goal was to convey South Carolina’s opposition to oil and gas drilling off our coast. There are so few opportunities where the federal government comes here to actually listen so it was a great opportunity for folks to say “Thank you for coming, but please stop offshore drilling off of our coast” So as you can see that was on a lot of people’s minds which I think was really great because they can take that back to D.C and tell their bosses,” Siegal said.
Citizens and businesses from all over the lowcountry came to this listening session. NOAA was responsive to the people’s questions and absorbent in people’s statements of opposition and resistance towards the organizations push to expand offshore drilling.
“I wasn’t really surprised by anything because we know that NOAA is an agency that is under the Trump administration so we know they are supporting the blue economy which part of that plan is to expand offshore drilling. The takeaway would be that I’m glad they listened to us and I hope that they really do take those concerns back to Washington, D.C and turn them into action and do their part to protect our coast,” Siegal said.