McCrory criticizes buffer zone for offshore drilling, wants faster action
Posted April 15, 2015
RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory visited Capitol Hill on Wednesday to reaffirm support to open more of the Atlantic Ocean to look for natural gas and oil deposits. But he also raised concerns about portions of the Obama administration's five-year offshore lease proposal.
The Republican governor testified before a subcommittee of the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee about the proposal that could open tracts off the Carolinas to drilling later this decade.
McCrory says he's worried a proposed 50-mile Atlantic buffer for drilling could keep out of reach 40 percent of North Carolina's potential offshore energy resources.
"North Carolina’s coastline is unique and merits individual consideration when determining appropriate exclusion zones," he said.
He also urged at least two Atlantic lease sales early in the cycle in part to encourage states to build energy-related infrastructure, adding that equitable revenue sharing for coastal states is necessary.
"North Carolina stands ready to make the necessary investments that will help America move closer to energy independence,” McCrory said. “But before those investments can be made, we need a clear commitment from the federal government on revenue sharing, Atlantic lease sales and a long-term energy plan that the states can depend on.”