Center for Biological Diversity

Media Advisory, April 18, 2016

Contacts:  Yudith Nieto, TEJAS, (832) 867-1250
Matt Johnson, Sierra Club, (512) 605-6376
Blake Kopcho, Center for Biological Diversity, (805) 708-3435

Houston Communities Demand No New Drilling Leases in Gulf of Mexico

Resistance to Offshore Drilling Plan Rallies Six Years After Deepwater Horizon,
Building on Momentum From Superdome Action Last Month

HOUSTON— On April 20, exactly six years after the BP Deepwater Horizon explosion that killed 11 Gulf residents and triggered the largest oil spill in U.S. history, residents from Houston and surrounding communities will gather to demand an end to all federal auctions for new offshore fossil fuel leases, a serious investment in renewable energy, and a just transition away from intensive fossil fuel production for Gulf communities. The press conference will begin at the start of a public meeting of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management on its recently released five-year plan.

The Obama administration released the 2017-2022 plan for offshore fossil fuel development on March 15. Thanks to grassroots pressure along the Eastern Seaboard, the plan no longer includes drilling off the Atlantic Coast. However, the proposal would expand leasing in the Arctic and Gulf of Mexico, risking more disastrous spills like the BP disaster, putting communities in harm’s way and deepening the U.S. dependence on fossil fuels that are driving the global climate crisis. The Gulf of Mexico has long been an epicenter of extraction for the fossil fuel industry; these coastal communities, many of which are still recovering from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, would benefit economically from a just transition to a clean-energy economy, starting with a halt in new offshore leasing. 

Who: Residents from Houston and surrounding communities impacted by oil and gas operations in the Gulf of Mexico and on the Gulf Coast

What: Press conference calling on President Obama and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to end all new auctions for offshore fossil fuel extraction leases, and invest in a just transition to a sustainable economy

When: Wednesday, April 20, 2016, at 2:30 p.m. CT. The public meeting is scheduled to run from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. CT.

Where: Outside of Hyatt Regency Houston, 1200 Louisiana St, Houston, Texas 77002 (exact spot TBD)

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