Judge will allow offshore drilling case to move forward


Apparently Trump isn't the legal eagle he thinks he is:

U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel of Charleston has denied the Department of the Interior’s motion to dismiss lawsuits filed by several groups, including the South Carolina Attorney General’s office.

What it means is that the case will continued to be tried, said attorney Amy Armstrong with the South Carolina Environmental Law Project, one of the drilling opponents. Meanwhile, the department at any time could issue permits to start the work anyway — a possibility that opponents say they are ready to fight.

Whales and dolphins have incredibly sensitive hearing, and can communicate with each other at vast distances. Their tympanic plate/membrane is in direct contact with sea water, and they use echolocation to defend against predators and avoid obstructions (like the rising shelf of landfall). Seismic blasting by oil companies looking for deposits can do permanent damage to their abilities, but even a short period of confusion can disrupt their migration and eventually prove fatal. Back to the lawsuit:

The ruling follows a January decision representing a major win for drilling opponents. In that ruling, the federal agencies in charge of approving seismic testing for offshore oil and gas in the Atlantic were ordered to show conservationists how they arrived at their permitting decisions.

It meant staff will have to disclose emails, memos, attachments and other communications on various discussions the groups expect to provide insight into how the agencies moved toward opening areas off the coast, including South Carolina.

The other drilling opponents challenging the Trump administration include 10 states, 19 municipalities in South Carolina alone, at least eight environmental groups and the S.C. Small Business Chamber of Commerce.

Interior is even worse than the FDA in relying upon industry-sponsored studies to sway their decision-making process. Such disclosure mentioned above is a great way to get that propaganda on the record, so it can be chewed up by real scientists.