The federal government this week began accepting public comments on a proposed offshore oil drilling plan that could impact areas off South Carolina.
It comes as the Interior Department follows President Donald Trump’s request that it reconsider a five-year plan crafted for the South Atlantic under President Obama’s Administration last year which closed off the region to oil and natural gas efforts.
Monday’s listing in the Federal Register starts a lengthy process for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to craft a new five-year plan for offshore drilling rights leases. The agency left the Atlantic Ocean out of its 2017-2022 plan. Meanwhile, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) also announced Monday it had extended its own public comment period on whether to allow five companies to conduct survey operations which could potentially harm marine mammals.
“America must put the energy needs of American families and businesses first and continue implementing a plan that ensures energy security and economic vitality for decades to come,” Trump’s executive order stated. [Read more…]