RICHMOND, Va. – Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced his opposition Thursday to offshore drilling in the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Virginia.
President Donald Trump signed an executive order in April to begin a five-year plan for offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and off the East Coast of the United States.
Governor McAuliffe submitted a letter to the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management on the National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program and released the following statement:
“Revenue sharing agreement is an essential precursor to moving forward on any offshore oil and gas exploration in Virginia. President Trump’s proposal to end the revenue sharing agreement with the Gulf States is a clear indication that we cannot trust the President to give Virginia its fair share of the revenues that would result from offshore exploration. Additionally, the President’s administration is actively working to cut funding from the very agencies that would be charged with protecting Virginia’s coastal environment in the event that exploration went forward. For these reasons, I do not support including the Commonwealth of Virginia in the new review of the National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program. My administration will continue to focus on diversifying Virginia’s economy and using our precious resources in a way that benefits the people of Virginia.”
According to the Southern Environmental Law Center, Gov. McAuliffe joins North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper and South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster in voicing their opposition to offshore drilling.