Surfrider Foundation hates to say it, but they told them so.
When President Obama announced in late March that he would consider expanding offshore oil drilling near U.S. coastline, the surfing foundation criticized the move as an end to “thirty years of marine protection.”
Now, after more than 2.7 million gallons of oil have spilled into the gulf just 11 days from a broken British Petroleum pipeline in the Gulf of Mexico, threatening an enormous swath of ocean and coastline ecosystems, Surfrider notes on its blog that this mess is exactly just the kind of catastrophe thing they were warning about.
“This kind of environmental tragedy isn’t unprecedented — a similar rig explosion happened last year off Australia — and we’ll probably be seeing it more often if Congress expands drilling off U.S. shores,” the foundation wrote.
Today, Surfrider joined 70 other environmental organizations in signing a letter to Obama, calling for a moratorium on offshore oil drilling.
“What began with the apparent tragic loss of 11 lives on April 21, 2010 now has the potential to be one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history,” the organizations write. “The unfolding catastrophe clearly illustrates that offshore drilling is an inherently dangerous, risky, and dirty business.
“Furthermore, these events raise numerous questions about the safety and environmental safeguards that are intended to protect our coastlines. If we cannot contain an oil spill in the very temperate Gulf of Mexico, how can we have any faith that a similar disaster does not await the ‘exploratory’ drilling currently planned for the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas in the extreme conditions of the Arctic Ocean where we already know technology does not exist to clean up a spill in icy water.”
And by the way, you’re going to screw up the surfing too.