For the annual, “Hands Across the Sand,” a human line was formed along the beach to underscore our message: No to offshore drilling, yes to clean energy.
Every coastal municipality in South Carolina opposes offshore drilling and seismic blasting. Rep. Tom Rice changed his position last year to also oppose drilling. Local officials understand we have the most to lose. Our tourism and commercial fishing economy relies on pristine shorelines and clean waters.
The Trump administration has put all U.S. coastal waters back on the table. Permits for seismic blasting – so dangerous to marine life – may be fast-tracked. The few safeguards introduced after the Deepwater Horizon disaster may be rolled back.
It's time for Rice to help defend South Carolina from offshore drilling, coastal industrialization and inevitable leaks and spills. HR 2252, the Coastal Economies Protection Act introduced by Rep. Mark Sanford, would suspend offshore drilling and all related activities in East Coast waters for the next 10 years.
Rice can demonstrate his sincerity by co-sponsoring this bill.
Joan Furlong, Myrtle Beach