The Trump Administration opens up nearly ALL of U.S. waters to oil and gas leasing

On January 4 2018, the Trump administration released its new 5-year plan on oil and gas drilling and leasing. 

The 2019-2024 National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program lifts President Obama’s ban on leasing that was established after years of environmental review and thousands of public input.  It would give the oil and gas industry drilling rights in all but 1 of the 26 planning areas in the Arctic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.

What Can You Do? 

Learn About the Plan

Submit Public Comment Online or By Mail (See tips below)

  • Click HERE to submit you comments online.

Attend a Public Meeting & Submit Public Comment in Person

  • BOEM will hold public meetings in January and February.
  • The calendar and locations of all scheduled meetings can be found at this BOEM website.

Sign Petitions: Click Organization Links Below; Sign and Share with Friends

Write a Letter to the Editor

Submitting Comments In Writing

During the Request for Information period, it is critical that we submit public comments about the risks offshore oil and gas drilling pose to North Carolina’s coastal communities, economies, and ecosystems. We have a duty to protect our coast for current and future generations. This is more than a place — it is a part of our identity as North Carolinians.

  • Click HERE to submit you comments online.


Refute an argument in favor of opening North Carolina’s coast to drilling. The oil and gas industry claims that Atlantic drilling will create thousands of jobs. However, more than 50,000 jobs, in North Carolina alone, already exist on our coast and would be threatened if drilling activities occur. Also, these projections are rooted in a study of best-case scenarios that counter studies have debunked. Oil prices would need to be at record highs as would demand. Oil prices have been at historic lows for some time, and the United States is flush with oil reserves, so demand for additional oil domestically is minimal.

Tell how you will be personally impacted if the federal government allows oil companies to drill off our coast. You are a North Carolinian or have a connection to the coast. No matter what your reason, incorporate your story as part of your comment. It could affect your heart, livelihood, wallet, property, career, family — it helps to put a human impact to what can often be seen as more callous.

If you have access to data, use it. Here’s a little data we put together: 

Economic impacts

  • North Carolina’s economy relies on a healthy coast. The fishing, tourism, and recreation industries support roughly 51,000 jobs and generate more nearly $2.2 billion in GDP for North Carolina. We shouldn’t prioritize oil company profits over coastal businesses.
  • Offshore drilling would threaten our identity as North Carolinians – our coastal environment, economy, and quality of life.
  • Tourism and fishing – both commercial and recreational – are the economic backbone of coastal communities. Imagine the impact on beachside hotels and restaurants, fishing outfitters, and realtors if our beautiful coastal communities were turned over to big oil.
  • The oil and gas industry’s economic projections are based on faulty assumptions that overestimate jobs and income, while discounting the existing tourism- and recreation-based economies.

Environmental risks

  • North Carolina’s coast is home to a number of endangered and threatened species including the loggerhead sea turtle and North Atlantic right whale.
  • The National Wildlife Refuges, National Seashores, state protected areas, and ecologically sensitive marine areas along North Carolina’s coast are too precious to risk.
  • Instead of spending our resources developing dirty energy sources, North Carolina should instead develop clean, renewable energy sources. North Carolina has more wind energy potential than any other state on the Atlantic Coast.

We’ve got a host of fact sheets available here for you to use to make your case!

Highlight any credentials, if applicable. If you have relevant professional or personal experience to this issue, name it: work in real estate? Fish? Attorney? Own a business? Researcher? Scientist? Work in hospitality? You get the picture..