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NYS Legislature Bans Offshore Drilling

Kevin P. Coughlin
Office of N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo
A view of the Long Island Sound from Kings Park, N.Y.

The New York State Legislature has passed two bills to protect Long Island’s shoreline and marine life. The bills ban oil drilling and one style of commercial fishing.

The offshore drilling ban comes in response to last year’s Trump administration policy, which indicated they would consider opening almost all U.S. coastal waters to oil and gas exploration.

State Senator Todd Kaminsky of Nassau said any drilling could have a negative impact on Long Island’s economy.

“I’m glad we could finally come together to prohibit offshore drilling. It’s something that could devastate Long Island and it’s something, today, we stand up against.”

A second bill protects an oily bait fish called menhaden from commercial vacuum fishing, which traps the fish in large quantities. That puts the food source for whales in New York waters at risk of overfishing.

Jay Shah is a former Long Island bureau chief at WSHU.