House Permanently Protects All East and West Coast States From New Offshore Drilling - Oceana USA

House Permanently Protects All East and West Coast States From New Offshore Drilling

Oceana Applauds Build Back Better Provision to Permanently Ban Oil and Gas Leasing in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Eastern Gulf of Mexico

Press Release Date: November 19, 2021

Location: Washington


Austin Matheny, Dustin Cranor, APR | email:, | tel: 858.395.5577, 954.348.1314

WASHINGTON — Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act, which would permanently protect the Atlantic, Pacific, and Eastern Gulf of Mexico from dirty and dangerous offshore drilling.

Oceana released the following statement from campaign director Diane Hoskins:

“Today’s vote marks a historic step forward for our climate and our oceans. Permanently protecting the Atlantic, Pacific, and Eastern Gulf of Mexico from offshore drilling helps combat the climate crisis and will benefit coastal economies that rely on a healthy ocean — especially industries like tourism, fishing, and recreation. We commend Speaker Pelosi and the many champions in Congress who fought for these protections.

“Offshore oil drilling is dirty, dangerous, and bad for the climate. We know there’s more work ahead, but this bold package offers meaningful hope for the future. We urge the Senate to ensure that permanent protection from new offshore drilling is included in the Build Back Better Act. Sending this monumental legislation to the president’s desk for his signature would be a major victory for our oceans, climate, and economy and would help support a transition to clean energy sources like offshore wind.”

A recent Oceana analysis found that permanent offshore drilling protections for all unleased federal waters could prevent over 19 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions. That’s the equivalent to taking every car in the U.S. off the road for the next 15 years. The analysis also found that permanent protections in all unleased federal waters could prevent more than $720 billion in damages to people, property, and the environment.

As of today, nationwide opposition and concern over offshore drilling activities includes:

  • Every East and West Coast governor, including Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, California, Oregon, and Washington
  • Nearly 400 local communities
  • Over 2,300 local, state, and federal bipartisan officials
  • East and West Coast alliances representing over 55,000 businesses
  • Mid-Atlantic, New England, Pacific, and South Atlantic fishery management councils
  • Commercial and recreational fishing interests such as the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations, Snook and Gamefish Foundation, Fisheries Survival Fund, Billfish Foundation, and International Game Fish Association
  • California Coastal Commission, California Fish and Game Commission, and California State Lands Commission
  • More than 120 scientists
  • More than 80 former military leaders
  • Department of Defense, NASA, U.S. Air Force, and Florida Defense Support Task Force

For more information about Oceana’s efforts to stop the expansion of offshore drilling, please click here.

Oceana is the largest international advocacy organization dedicated solely to ocean conservation. Oceana is rebuilding abundant and biodiverse oceans by winning science-based policies in countries that control one-third of the world’s wild fish catch. With more than 225 victories that stop overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, and the killing of threatened species like turtles and sharks, Oceana’s campaigns are delivering results. A restored ocean means that 1 billion people can enjoy a healthy seafood meal, every day, forever. Together, we can save the oceans and help feed the world. Visit usa.oceana.orgto learn more.