The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Offshore Oil Exploration Proposal Horrible for Oceans and Marine Life
The Obama administration announced plans on March 28 to move forward in opening our Mid- and South Atlantic coastline for offshore oil and gas exploration, which could allow oil companies to use dangerous high-pressure air guns and other seismic exploration methods up and down the Atlantic coast.
The decision announced by the Department of Interior promises to do irreparable harm to endangered whales and valuable ocean fisheries in the Mid- and South-Atlantic. Using giant arrays of seismic air guns to explore for oil and gas is equivalent to blasting dynamite in a neighborhood every 10-12 seconds for weeks or months on end. It can cause hearing damage and death to marine mammals like endangered North Atlantic right whales that calve off the coasts of Georgia and Florida, and can decrease commercial and recreational fish catches dramatically.
Following is a statement from Natural Resources Defense Council President Frances Beinecke:
“Today’s announcement is great for petroleum companies, but horrible news for our coastlines and a potentially deadly blow to ocean fisheries and wildlife. It’s yet another reason why we need to break our dangerous addiction to oil—not find more ways to feed that addiction.
“In coming months, the Department of Interior will hold public hearings on this issue. Anybody who cares about our oceans, our beaches and our wildlife should speak out against this and for solutions that recognize the environmental costs of seismic exploration.”
For more information on the dangers of seismic oil exploration, see NRDC’s fact sheet by clicking here.
Also see senior policy analyst Michael Jasny’s blog by clicking here.
For more information, click here.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Brian Barth
Late fall, after the last crops have been harvested, is a time to rest and reflect on the successes and challenges of the gardening year. But for those whose need to putter around in the garden doesn't end when cold weather comes, there's surely a few lingering chores. Get them done now and you'll be ahead of the game in spring.
By Bailey Hopp
If you had to choose a diamond for your engagement ring from below or above the ground, which would you pick … and why would you pick it? This is the main question consumers are facing when picking out their diamond engagement ring today. With a dramatic increase in demand for conflict-free lab-grown diamonds, the diamond industry is shifting right before our eyes.
(R) The measles virus pictured under a microscope. PHIL / CDC
The Pacific Island nation of Samoa declared a state of emergency this week, closed all of its schools and limited the number of public gatherings allowed after a measles outbreak has swept across the country of just 200,000 people, according to Reuters.
By Alison Cagle
Rising above the Arizona desert, the Santa Rita Mountains cradle 10,000 years of Indigenous history. The Tohono O'odham Nation, Pascua Yaqui Tribe, and Hopi Tribe, among numerous other tribes, have worshipped, foraged, hunted and laid their ancestors to rest in the mountains for generations.
Native Americans are disproportionately without access to clean water, according to a new report, "Closing the Water Access Gap in the United States: A National Action Plan," to be released this afternoon, which shows that more than two million Americans do not have access to access to running water, indoor plumbing or wastewater services.
By Nanticha Ocharoenchai
In the Czech Republic, horses have become the knights in shining armor. A study published in the Journal for Nature Conservation suggests that returning feral horses to grasslands in Podyjí National Park could help boost the numbers of several threatened butterfly species.