WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works, issued the following statement on the confirmations of Ryan Zinke to be the Secretary of Interior and Rick Perry to be the Secretary of Energy. Senator Cardin voted against both nominations in defense of the Chesapeake Bay and the health of the Mid-Atlantic Coast.
“The Mid-Atlantic Coast and the fragile Chesapeake Bay, especially, are at greater risk with the confirmation of Ryan Zinke and Rick Perry. In their new positions, both will have important roles to play in implementing the Trump Administration’s energy strategy, which unfortunately is likely to include maximizing energy production on federal lands, including the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). I oppose oil and gas drilling off the coast of Maryland and the entrance to the Chesapeake Bay. States to the south of Maryland may push for OCS oil and gas production, and reap increased benefits from it at the expense of all taxpayers. But if there’s an oil spill that hits Maryland’s coastline and enters the Chesapeake Bay, it will be our fishing and tourism industries that suffer.”