Oil drilling risks North Carolina coastal economy, mayors worry
MANTEO, NC (AP) — Mayors from along the North Carolina coast are discussing the costs of offshore oil drilling if something goes wrong.
About a dozen mayors from Duck to Topsail Beach are meeting Wednesday in Manteo to discuss their worries about offshore oil and gas exploration. Opponents say that one future oil spill could destroy the state’s $4 billion fishing business and badly dent the state’s $20 billion tourism industry.
The Trump administration is pushing to expand drilling off the U.S. coast, although court challenges and opposition from many coastal states have slowed those efforts. The administration this month moved to give oil and gas companies more flexibility in meeting safety requirements imposed after the deadly 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon explosion, the worst offshore oil disaster in U.S. history.