Trump scraps Obama policy on protecting oceans, Great Lakes

Beachgoers enjoy the sunshine at Stearns Park in Ludington. In his order this week President Donald Trump said he was

In his order this week, President Donald Trump said he was "rolling back excessive bureaucracy created by the previous administration", a policy devised by his predecessor for protecting US oceans and the Great Lakes.

Charter and others also said the new policy, while still only a framework with no immediate mandates, would make it harder for states and other regional players to pursue action on conservation and climate change.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpConservatives express concern over House GOP immigration bill Poll: McSally holds 14-point lead in Arizona GOP Senate primary Trump defends Nielsen amid criticism over family separations MORE is repealing a controversial executive order drafted by former President Obama that was meant to protect the Great Lakes and the oceans bordering the United States.

The Republican president said he was creating a smaller Ocean Policy Committee while eliminating "duplicative" regional planning bodies created under Obama.

FILE - In this April 21, 2010, file photo, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig burns in the Gulf of Mexico following an explosion that killed 11 workers and caused the worst offshore oil spill in the nation's history. The directive called on state and federal governments to work together to promote "healthy ocean ecosystems".

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.

"To promote our nation's energy security, the National Ocean Policy should promote the responsible development of renewable offshore wind and reject dirty and risky offshore oil drilling", Savitz said.

But he said federal agencies could participate in regional partnerships formed by states.

Jacqueline Savitz, a chief policy officer with environmental group Oceana, said in a statement Trump's order "undercuts important conservation measures needed to support strong coastal economies and the millions of Americans who depend on healthy oceans".

"The offshore energy industry has successfully operated side by side with other ocean users, without major conflict", said Randall Luthi, president of the National Ocean Industries Association.

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

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