The Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce will host a press conference regarding Offshore Energy Exploration off Virginias coast on Februrary 11
The Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce will host a press conference regarding Offshore Energy Exploration off Virginia’s coast on February 11th at 2:30pm at the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside. Immediately following the press conference, the public is invited to make their comments as a part of the open discussion period associated with a recently announced U.S. Interior Department five-year strategy for oil and gas leasing from 2017-2022. The draft plan includes an area of the Outer Continental Shelf off the Virginia coast.
Bi-partisan support exists for offshore energy exploration and energy harvesting in Virginia waters. The state’s Republican-led General Assembly has endorsed offshore activities as have some members of the Commonwealth’s congressional delegation, including U.S. Representative Scott Rigell of Virginia Beach. Additional support comes from Governor Terry McAuliffe and Virginia’s Democratic U.S. Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine. Elected officials insist that the Commonwealth share in the offshore royalties.
Broad-based regional support from the community is growing in part because of the possibility of significant job creation and revenue generation. This exploration opportunity also could mean energy independence with the establishment of this region becoming the energy capital of the east coast. While the Chamber is excited by the potential economic impact this opportunity presents, it must be stressed we support due diligence to protect the environment, military readiness and other industry.
The Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Bryan K. Stephens will be joined at the event by Barry DuVal, President and CEO, Virginia Chamber of Commerce; Brett Vassey, President and CEO, Virginia Manufacturers Association; Bruce Williams, a noted community activist from Virginia Beach; and Tommy Bell, Ironworkers Local Union #79 and the Virginia State Building and Construction Trade.