NEWS FROM THE FIELD: Protests in Sacramento Against Offshore Oil Drilling

Clara Bonaventura, Advancement Associate
Date: February 8, 2018

On February 8, I marched through the streets of Sacramento dressed as a whale! Why? To protect our coasts from offshore drilling.

I joined over 500 activists and indigenous, environmental, and bipartisan legislative leaders from across California who rallied in Sacramento to protest Trump’s plan to open the state’s coast to offshore oil drilling. (You can listen to some of the speeches here.)

From inside the whale suit, it was hard to see much. But I did see people who were visibly shaken. They had come to Sacramento to voice their opposition to oil drilling in what they thought would be a public hearing. Instead, they walked into a silent room filled with pro-drilling posters.

Over 500 activists and indigenous, environmental and bipartisan legislative leaders from across California marched from the Sacramento Capitol building to the sham hearing, protesting Trump’s plan to open our coasts to offshore oil drilling.

When one protester voiced her concerns about offshore drilling, a government staffer responded that America needs to invest in offshore drilling to meet our country’s energy demand because “renewables just aren’t there yet.” When the same protester asked why we wouldn’t invest in renewables instead, the staffer evaded the question and redirected her to type her comment into the public computers. Fortunately, another protester spoke up, yelling “Why are we being so quiet?” and led others to chant, clap, and march in a circle to protest the sham hearing.

The Trump administration wants to sell 7 new oil and gas leases in the Pacific Ocean, where there have been no new leases since 1984 (Photo Credit: BOEM).

The battle is not over yet. We still need your help to stop Trump from expanding offshore drilling off California’s shores!

We can’t stay quiet while Trump destroys the health of our coastal communities. So what’s next? Here’s what you can do to support the campaign against offshore drilling:

  1. Sign and share our petition for public comments against offshore drilling, which we will submit to the administration by March 9.
  2. Join fellow activists on an introductory phone call next week to learn more about the campaign to stop offshore drilling and fracking in our oceans; the call is hosted by the Protect the Pacific Coalition that Pacific Environment is a member of.
  3. Check out the post-rally action packet to find out what else you can do, like passing a resolution against offshore drilling in your city!