Could Drilling in the Atlantic Harm Fish, Whales, Turtles? A proposal from President Barack Obama could open parts of the U.S Atlantic coast to drilling.

By: Maria Vargas

Obama is thinking of exposing the Atlantic Ocean to oil and gas exploration. This 500 mile long region stretches from Virginia to Georgia and is home to 700 fish species, five types of sea turtles, migrating humpbacks, and endangered fin whales and right whales, which have sensitive acoustic systems. Millions of Seabirds fly across the Gulf Stream carrying warm water and nutrients north.

Deep abysses in form of a canyon cover the bottom of the Atlantic. The abysses are home to tilefish and spindly-legged crabs. In reality, not much is known about the amount of oil and gas exists in the Atlantic or how big the threat will be to extract the recourses.

It’s better to be cautions than risk the equilibrium of the habitats that live in the Atlantic. In order to drill in the Atlantic, the administration’s plan has to be approved by the public and environmental review, which is a long process and may not even happen. The amounts of oil and gas in the Atlantic are small when compared to the Gulf of Mexico or Alaska. If a spill happens, the entire ecosystem is at risk because it’s all connected. Therefore, I don’t believe digging in the Atlantic is a good idea.

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