In Response to Op-Ed by Robert Bradley, Jr

As a resident of a coastal community, I find it unconscionable that Mr. Bradley supports expanded drilling for gas and oil off America’s Atlantic coasts. His stance is purely economic, without concern for the greater good of our current and future population. Offshore drilling does irreparable harm to all life forms along our coastlines.

Coastal communities have firsthand knowledge regarding the importance of protecting our shores. The ocean is part of our lifelines. Mr. Bradley would like to assure us that offshore drilling is getting safer because of new regulations, new technologies and regulatory reforms for coastal protection. He refers to President Trump’s Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s statement that there is justification for the drilling because, in exchange, “billions of dollars will be available to fund the conservation of our coastlines, public lands and parks.” Destroying the coastline in order to make money to protect the coastline is completely illogical. He also fails to mention the potential desecration of public lands and parks by the Trump administration. This administration has ‘dismantled longstanding federal laws in the protection of public lands and parks and priorities industry at the expense of clean air and clean water.” Are these the same promises that Mr. Bradley assures us will protect our coastlines?

Mr. Bradley also states that the expansion of offshore drilling access could support nearly 280,000 jobs nationwide. Conversely, according to Sierra Club analysis of Department of Energy jobs date, clean energy (solar and wind) jobs nationally outnumber fossil fuel jobs by more than 2.5 to 1.

Recently, the Atlantic coast has been severely impacted by devastating hurricanes, blizzards, flooding and destruction of homes, property and the loss of lives. These are all natural occurrences. The potential destruction of our waters by drilling is not. It is important for those of us who live and work along our shores to protect them and ensure their future. We must continuously keep in contact with out local, state and federal agencies and government to let them now that they have a moral and environmental obligation to take care of all that live along and within these waters. We must keep in mind that once we open the door, it will be virtually impossible to close.

Maryalice Sharkey and Winthrop Members of Mothers out Front

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