November 17, 2016 Calls on President Obama to Cancel All Oil and Gas Leases in New Offshore Drilling Plan

Brooklyn, NY — is calling on President Obama to cancel all oil and gas leases in the Atlantic, Arctic, and Gulf of Mexico to help keep fossil fuels in the ground and secure his climate legacy before he leaves office. The President is expected to soon release the final version of his 2017-2022 Offshore Drilling plan: cancelling all new leases is one of the most powerful steps he could take to combat climate change. Executive Director May Boeve issued the following statement urging President Obama to take action:

“We’re calling on President Obama to secure his climate legacy and cancel all oil and gas leases in our public waters. Along with rejecting the Dakota Access Pipeline, this is the most powerful step President Obama can take on climate before he leaves office.

“With President-elect Trump threatening to drag us backwards on climate, it’s critical that President Obama take us another leap forward. Scientists are very clear that the only way to prevent catastrophic climate change is to keep fossil fuels in the ground, or in this case, under the ocean floor. Blocking new drilling would help protect our climate and coastal communities who are threatened by everything from oil spills to rising seas.

“Millions of people have sent petitions, marched in the streets, and gone to jail to urge President Obama to live up to his promise of bold climate action. Now he’s running out of time and the stakes are higher than ever. No matter what Trump plans to do, it’s important that our current President send the American people the right signal: we must transition to an 100% renewable energy economy to protect our people and planet.”

For the over a year, has supported an intense campaign in the Gulf of Mexico and across the country to push President Obama to cancel all new offshore drilling permits. Activists have shown up at dozens of fossil fuel auctions across the country, leading many of them to be cancelled or postponed. A number of mass marches led by frontline communities have taken place in New Orleans to protest oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

The movement has helped popularize the phrase “keep it in the ground,” referring to the scientific conclusion that more than 80% of known fossil fuel reserves must be kept in the ground in order to keep global warming below 2°C, a target the United States has agreed to meet as part of the Paris Climate Agreement.


Contact: Dani Heffernan, [email protected], +1 (305) 992-1544