President Donald Trump Revokes National Ocean Policy

Jun 21, 2018

President Donald Trump has revoked a national policy that promotes ocean health. 

The National Ocean Policy was established in 2010 as part of an executive order signed by former-president Barack Obama.

It mandated federal agencies work with state and tribal governments as stewards of the ocean to develop sustainable practices for using its resources. 

"This new policy that revokes the old policy clearly strips any stewardship ethic out of federal ocean policy," Priscilla Brooks, director of ocean conservation at the Conservation Law Foundation, said. 

The word "stewdarship" appears eight times in Obama's executive order, whereas in Trump's, it appears only once under the section that revokes the old policy.  

Trump's new policy also doesn't mandate federal agencies collaborate with states and tribes on ocean management, which Brooks said is a problem. 

"(The ocean is) a shared resource and it takes everyone to make good decisions about our ocean that will enable us to capitalize on everything that the ocean has to offer," she said. 

However, the National Ocean Policy Coalition, a group made up of oil and gas companies, fishermen and other industries, applauds Trump’s move. 

"This announcement will help ensure a future in which the American people can continue to receive the diverse array of economic, recreational and societal benefits that the oceans provide for generations to come," the coalition wrote in a statement

The repeal of the National Ocean Policy comes after Trump’s proposal to open up more than 90 percent of federal coastal waters to offshore oil and gas drilling.