The outgoing president is using every last-minute tactic to further his failed legacy.
President Obama has used global warming as a platform to proclaim himself as the environmentally friendly president.
It may be the only pursuit of his left standing once the new administration drills into Obama’s executive orders.
Obama used a 66-year-old law to eliminate two oceans from oil and gas drilling. His proclamations fly in the face of the incoming president who plans to advance US energy interests.
As reported in The Hill, Obama on Tuesday formally blocked offshore oil and gas drilling in most of the Arctic Ocean, answering a call from environmentalists who say the government needs to do more to prevent drilling in environmentally sensitive areas of U.S.-controlled oceans.
Obama is invoking a 1953 law governing the Outer Continental Shelf to block drilling in federal waters in the Arctic’s Chukchi Sea and most of its Beaufort Sea. He also protected 21 underwater canyons in the Atlantic Ocean from drilling, White House officials said.
The president worked in tandem with Canada which will block drilling in all of its Arctic Ocean acreage, a moratorium officials will review every five years, the White House said.
The announcement locks in a decision Obama made last month to block drilling in the Atlantic and Arctic Oceans during an offshore leasing plan that runs through 2022.
It also cements Obama’s legacy as a president who has taken aggressive unilateral action against climate change and protected more land and water than any previous president.
Obama’s plans face possible reversal with a new administration.
After he takes office, President-elect Donald Trump could undo the 2017-2022 leasing plan, though it would be a lengthy process.
It’s unclear how Trump could undo Obama’s Tuesday announcement: The White House said no previous president has tried to undo a drilling withdrawal under the 1953 law, and that there is no provision to do so.
The Gulf of Mexico is the hotbed for the American offshore drilling industry, and Obama’s 2017-2022 leasing plan allows for more drilling there.
Every president has had the opportunity to secure US interests as he sees fit.
Unfortunately, with Obama, he has placed his personal interests before others for years. Without the support of Congress or the American people he has worked to prop himself up as a figurehead for environmental causes.
His power moves before leaving office do not help the US.
Fortunately, Trump will have something to say about much of what Obama has initiated.
Source: The Hill