Few details from a meeting with the Interior Secretary raise questions

Raleigh – Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke visited North Carolina yesterday to discuss the Trump administration’s disastrous offshore drilling plan. Governor Cooper and a bipartisan group of elected officials and stakeholders clearly stressed the importance of exempting North Carolina from the plan.

Less clear, however, is what was discussed when Speaker Moore met with Sec. Zinke. Beyond a tweet saying Moore and Sec. Zinke had a “discussion on offshore energy,” scant details exist, raising several important questions:

  • Did Speaker Moore stand up for North Carolina’s coasts, our economy, and our environment?

The Trump administration’s offshore drilling plan would put North Carolina’s $3 billion coastal economy, 22 barrier islands, and millions of acres of estuaries at risk. Our coastal communities, local economies, and environment demand Speaker Moore stand up for them.

  • Did Speaker Moore join the bipartisan group of NC leaders to request an exemption from the plan?

Bipartisan leaders from across North Carolina – Governor Cooper, local mayors, presidents of coastal chambers of commerce, and county commissioners – stressed to Governor Zinke that North Carolina should be exempted from the plan. Did Speaker Moore join them?

  • Did Speaker Moore join other Republicans from across the U.S. in opposing the plan?

Republican elected officials, including Governors and coastal leaders up and down the east coast, have criticized the Trump administration’s offshore drilling plan. Other have been vocal about the administration’s decision to only exempt Florida.

“The Trump administration’s offshore drilling plan is a disaster for North Carolina – our coasts, our economy, and our communities – and every NC leader needs to reject it,” NCDP Executive Director Kimberly Reynolds said. “Speaker Moore should tell North Carolinians what he discussed with Secretary Zinke, and join other bipartisan leaders in standing up for our coasts.”