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HR-70 (2017-2018)

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House Resolution
No. 70

Introduced by Assembly Member Baker

January 12, 2018

Relative to offshore drilling.


HR 70, as introduced, Baker.

WHEREAS, California has 840 miles of coastline with five of California’s most populous counties bordering the Pacific Ocean; and
WHEREAS, California’s coastal economy from those counties bordering the Pacific Ocean creates $662 billion in wages and $1.7 trillion in Gross Domestic Product; and
WHEREAS, Nearly 500,000 California jobs are dependent on ocean-related activities that together contribute over $44 billion to the economy; and
WHEREAS, Outdoor coastal recreation, including boating, wildlife observation, hiking, swimming, surfing, diving, and beach visitation, is vital to California’s economy and well-being, with ocean-dependent tourism and recreation employing over 350,000 Californians and generating over $17 billion annually; and
WHEREAS, California’s coastal ecosystem is home to a diverse variety of marine mammals, seabirds, sea turtles, marine fishes, and invertebrates, including numerous threatened and endangered species; and
WHEREAS, California’s commercial and recreational fishing industry feeds people around the world, supports more than 120,000 jobs, and generates over $6 billion in annual economic activity; and
WHEREAS, California has not issued new offshore oil leases for over 50 years, and has repeatedly called upon the federal government to prohibit new offshore oil development in federal waters off California’s coast; and
WHEREAS, The California Coastal Sanctuary Act of 1994 (Chapter 3.4 (commencing with Section 6240) of Part 1 of Division 6 of the Public Resources Code), which passed with bipartisan support, prohibits any new leases for the extraction of oil or gas in state waters, unless the President of the United States has found a severe energy supply interruption and has ordered distribution of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the Governor finds that the energy resources of the sanctuary will contribute significantly to alleviating that interruption, and the Legislature subsequently amends that act to allow that extraction; and
WHEREAS, on January 28, 1969, an oil platform in the Santa Barbara Channel blew out, releasing roughly 3.2 million gallons of crude oil that fouled Santa Barbara County’s ocean beaches from Goleta to Ventura and killed approximately 3,500 seabirds and marine mammals; and
WHEREAS, This tragic spill helped usher in a new era of environmental protection in California aimed at protecting and conserving our valuable natural resources for future generations; and
WHEREAS, The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management released a final 2017–2022 leasing program in 2016 that continued the moratorium on new oil and gas leasing in the undeveloped areas of the Pacific Outer Continental Shelf; and
WHEREAS, Governor Brown, in December 2016, requested that then President Obama permanently withdraw California’s Outer Continental Shelf from new oil and gas leasing; and
WHEREAS, In January 2018, the United States Department of the Interior under President Trump’s administration released a plan to open more federal waters to oil and gas drilling, including six proposed leases for drilling platforms off California’s coast; and
WHEREAS, After protests from Florida’s Governor Rick Scott, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced that Florida would no longer be included in the plan and that new oil drilling would not be allowed off Florida’s coast; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, That the Assembly of the State of California supports the prohibition of new oil or gas drilling in federal waters offshore California consistent with the California Coastal Sanctuary Act of 1994; and be it further
Resolved, That the Assembly of the State of California urges President Trump and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to exempt federal waters off the California’s coast from the planned new oil leases, thereby protecting California’s coast from the increased risks of oil spills that could result from increased exploration and drilling; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the President and Vice President of the United States, to the Governor of California, to the Majority and Minority Leaders of the United States Senate, to the Speaker and Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives, to each Senator and Representative from California in the Congress of the United States, to the Secretary of the United States Department of the Interior, to the Director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, and to each member of the California State Senate and Assembly.