COLUMBIA, S.C. (WMBF) – South Carolina leaders applauded President Donald Trump on Tuesday after he expanded a ban on new offshore drilling.
The president signed a memorandum on Tuesday instructing the interior secretary to prohibit drilling in the waters off the South Carolina coast, Georgia coast and both Florida coasts. The ban would last for a period of 10 years, from July 1, 2022, to June 20, 2032.
“South Carolina is blessed with the most beautiful and pristine beaches, sea islands, and marshes in the nation. Seismic testing and offshore drilling threatens their health and jeopardizes the future of our state’s $24 billion tourism industry. Today’s announcement is good news, but we must remain vigilant in the conservation and preservation of our coastline,” said Gov. Henry McMaster.
South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson also thanked the president for expanding the ban.
“I want to thank the Trump administration for listening to our concerns and announcing this moratorium,” Wilson said. “We had sued the federal government to protect South Carolina’s coast from oil and gas exploration and drilling. This is a step in the right direction and we will remain vigilant in protecting South Carolina’s coast and economy.”
The existing moratorium covers the Gulf of Mexico, and Trump said the new one would also cover the Atlantic coast.