Center for Biological Diversity

For Immediate Release, September 7, 2017

Contact: Blake Kopcho, (805) 708-3435,               

Arcata City Council Passes Resolution Against Offshore Fracking, Drilling

Trump Order to Expand Offshore Leasing Meeting Resistance in California

ARCATA, Calif.— The Arcata City Council approved a resolution Wednesday night opposing new drilling off the California coast and fracking in existing offshore oil and gas wells.

The vote follows President Trump’s April 28 executive order urging federal agencies to expand oil and gas leasing in federal waters. Trump’s order could expose the Pacific Ocean to new oil leasing for the first time in more than 30 years.

This week’s resolution was sponsored by Arcata’s Environmental Services Department and supported by the Center for Biological Diversity, which has been organizing a series of California city resolutions opposing offshore drilling and fracking, starting with the Santa Barbara City Council’s vote on July 25. 

“The last thing Californians want is more drilling and fracking off our coast. Arcata and other California cities are forming a wall of opposition to Trump’s reckless agenda,” said Blake Kopcho, an organizer with the Center. “Californians won’t stand aside and let him endanger wildlife and our communities with oil spills and toxic fracking chemicals.”

The Arcata resolution calls for:

  • A ban on new offshore oil and gas drilling, fracking, and other well stimulation in federal and state waters along the West Coast;
  • A phaseout of all offshore oil and gas extraction off California’s coast;
  • A framework for responsible renewable energy development.

The last offshore lease in federal waters off California was in 1984, but Trump’s order seeks to renew the leasing program. There are more than 30 offshore drilling platforms and hundreds of miles of underwater oil and gas pipelines off California’s coast. Operators want permits to frack offshore wells, using chemicals that are toxic to wildlife.

Separate lawsuits filed by the state of California and the Center, challenging the federal government’s approval of offshore fracking, are pending in federal district court.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.5 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

More press releases