Protesters rally against offshore drilling expansion - Tucson News Now

Protesters rally against offshore drilling expansion

West Coast oil drilling expansion is facing criticism as protesters and environmental agencies are concerned about it’s impact on natural ecosystems. (Source: (KOIN/CNN) West Coast oil drilling expansion is facing criticism as protesters and environmental agencies are concerned about it’s impact on natural ecosystems. (Source: (KOIN/CNN)

SALEM OR, (KOIN/CNN) - The Trump White House supports offshore oil drilling and not everyone is on the same page as the administration.

In Oregon, a group of anti-drill protesters took to the streets to give their point of view.

The crowd is taking a stand for the coast, as Pres. Donald Trump and his administration explore the expansion of offshore drilling.

Chantel Hason, who is a member of the Portland Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation, said she’s focused on clean upstream and the future. 

"Just considering that something like oil drilling, oil spills could happen on the Oregon coast with such a rich ecosystem, is unfathomable,” Hason said. “It shouldn't be allowed. We need it for future generations and if the coast goes, then we go."

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, a federal agency under the Department of the Interior, held an open house.

Bill Brown, who’s with the bureau, said it’s not taking a side but just gathering comment to write up an environmental impact statement.

"The purpose of these meetings is the environment,” Brown said. “We're here to listen to those concerns, get as much information as we can."

The BOEM said everything right now very preliminary, years away from anything taking shape.

As for Oregon and Washington, under that proposed draft program, oil and gas leasing could open up as early as 2021.

Brown said when it comes to the current state of offshore drilling, "It's not risk-free, but it's a lot more sound than it used to be.”

Copyright 2018 KOIN via CNN. All rights reserved.

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