Special to the Ocracoke Observer. Read the full story at Island Free Press.
By Frank Tursi
Coastal Review Online

The Obama Administration did the expected Tuesday and announced plans to potentially open portions of the Atlantic coast, including offshore North Carolina, to oil and natural gas drilling for the first time in almost three decades.

In keeping with Obama’s all-of-the above approach to energy development, the federal Bureau of Energy Management, or BOEM, yesterday released a draft five-year leasing plan that would begin in 2017 for offshore drilling. BOEM last week started the process to lease portions of federal waters off the North Carolina coast for commercial wind energy.

The drilling plan includes all the federal waters 50 miles off the mid- and south-Atlantic coasts, from the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay to the Georgia-Florida border. Also included in the plan are areas in the central and western Gulf of Mexico and off the north coast of Alaska.

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