Grassroots Opposition to Atlantic Drilling and Seismic Airgun Blasting | Oceana USA

Grassroots Opposition to Atlantic Drilling and Seismic Airgun Blasting


In January 2015, the U.S. Department of the Interior proposed opening a large swath of the Atlantic to offshore drilling, spanning from Virginia to Georgia. In March 2016 the administration removed this planning area from consideration for offshore drilling, yet opposition continues to mount. As of today, 122 East Coast municipalities, over 1,200 elected officials and an alliance representing over 35,000 businesses and 500,200 fishing families have publically opposed seismic airgun blasting and/or offshore drilling, citing threats to marine life, coastal communities and local economies. Along the Atlantic coast, nearly 1.4 million jobs and over $95 billion in gross domestic product rely on healthy ocean ecosystems, mainly through fishing, tourism and recreation. Seismic airgun blasting, a process used to search for oil and gas deposits deep below the ocean floor, is still being considered for an area twice the size of California, stretching all the way from Delaware to Florida. 

Atlantic Drilling Media Briefer - November 3, 2016

  • Briefing Document
  • Audio
  • Transcript  

Click here to view the full size map.

Where the movement began: Kure Beach, North Carolina, a picturesque tourist destination known for its small town atmosphere and the oldest fishing pier on the Atlantic coast, was ground zero in the fight against offshore oil exploration in the Atlantic Ocean. This tiny spit of sand that 2,000 people call home sparked a movement that has spread like wildfire up and down the East Coast. On January 27, 2014, more than 300 residents showed up to protest the mayor's position on seismic airgun blasting. Check out the video of the meeting, and read more on our blog.

Ever since that fateful night in January, opposition to seismic airgun blasting and Atlantic drilling has been mounting. Members of Congress and East Coast Governors need to hear from the people who will be most affected by seismic blasting and offshore drilling -- and that's where you come in. We have some great momentum, but we're only going to #StopTheDrill if more of us take up the call, and urge our elected officials to #ProtectOurCoast. Check out all the opposition to offshore oil and gas exploration and development, spread the word and join the movement! 

Municipalities opposing offshore drilling and/or seismic airgun blasting


Opposition from Business Interests


Opposition from Fishing Groups


Opposition from Elected Officials and Key Stakeholders





Congressional Letters (chronological)



Additional Resources

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