California offshore drilling could be expanded for the first time since 1984 under federal leasing p

The Trump administration, inviting a political backlash from coastal state leaders, on Thursday proposed to open for exploration the largest expanse of the nations offshore oil and natural gas reserves ever offered to global energy companies, including waters off the coast of California.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said the draft five-year leasing plan would commit 90% of the nations offshore reserves to leasing, including areas off all three regions of the California coast that have been off-limits to oil and gas exploration since the Reagan administration.

The draft plan, now subject to review and debate, would allow the first new federal lease sales off California since 1984. It sparked immediate fury from Democratic leaders up and down the West Coast.

The American people deserve smart, strong action to keep our communities healthy, clean and safe. Yet the Trump administration is racing forward with its increasingly brazen attempts to loot our environment and our planet, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) said in a statement. Americans from coast to coast will make their voices heard to oppose this blatant corporate giveaway.

California Gov. Jerry Brown joined the governors of Oregon and Washington in condemning the plan.

For more than 30 years, our shared coastline has been protected from further drilling, and well do whatever it takes to stop this reckless, shortsighted action, Brown and Govs. Kate Brown of Oregon and Jay Inslee of Washington said in a sta....

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