Guest Blogger SRK Outreach Coordinator Dave Mewborn
I am excited to announce that Port Wentworth was the latest municipality to pass a resolution opposing offshore drilling and seismic testing off of Georgia’s coast in July! They join the rest of Chatham County, dozens of other municipalities in Georgia, and more than 140 along the East Coast, in saying we want to protect our beautiful and unique coastline from offshore drilling and seismic testing. These practices could negatively impact pristine portions of our hundred-mile coastline and disrupt the ecosystem from the smallest phytoplankton to the largest of marine mammals. In addition, oil spills and fish kills are just a few of the risks that could jeopardize our state’s billion-dollar industries of tourism, recreation, and fishing. Now, we have the entire Savannah area united against this harmful extension of fossil fuel dependence.
Congrats and job well done to Paulita Bennett-Martin, who has worked tirelessly in towns along the Georgia and Atlantic Coast to pass like resolutions; OCEANA; my predecessor Jacob and the rest of the Savannah Riverkeeper team; the many other stakeholders, interest groups, and people like YOU who spread the word to help protect the awesome Georgia coast we all love.
This is not the end, however, of the fight in Chatham County, along the Georgia coast, or nationally for the rest of the Atlantic seaboard. We as citizens of Chatham County, as Georgians, and as Americans have an obligation to continue to check our local officials, our state officials, and our officials representing us on a national level, and keep them honest!
Resolutions like these are not law. They only serve as a unified voice to our elected officials saying, “This is what we want to protect and we demand our wishes as a community be respected,” and those leaders should follow suit in representing their constituents’ values. Resolutions like these are ways for us to start small in our aims and work our way to the top of the power chain. Please continue to follow this action because powerful interests in oil drilling and seismic testing off our coast will bide their time and continue to fight hard against the wishes of the majority of our coastal communities.
Check out SELC's resources on how to #ProtectOurCoast and sign the petition. Let’s keep the great state of Georgia’s waterways, beaches, and ocean healthy and beautiful!