Boston- Representative Ed Markey (D-Mass.) chairman of twin climate and energy panels in Congress, today met with top local bird experts and Massachusetts tourism and commercial fishing leaders at the New England Aquarium to discuss the Gulf of Mexico oil spill and its possible effects on New England. At the event, Markey highlighted the need to create permanent protections against oil drilling in New England.


(L-R): Patrick B. Moscaritolo, President & CEO, Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau; Rep. Markey; Angela Orlando Sanfilippo, Director, Massachusetts Fisherman’s Partnership; Wayne Petersen, Director of the Important Bird Areas Program, Mass Audubon Society

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BP’s oil spill is threatening marine life and marine livelihoods all along the Gulf coast,” said Markey. “And while this spill is unfolding more than 1,000 miles away, scientists are increasingly worried about how this spill may affect bird and sea life from the Bayous all the way up to Boston.”

That’s why I will be seeking to add provisions to the oil spill legislation that will soon be moving through the House that would keep Georges Bank safe from ever being the site of a future oil spill disaster. Legislation that I authored to protect Georges Bank has previously passed the House in 2008. The environmental disaster occurring in the Gulf is a stark reminder of why we can never allow Georges Bank to become BP’s Bank. And why we must ensure that it is a home to shellfish, not Shell Oil.”

The commercial fishing industry alone is responsible for over $2 billion in annual income in Massachusetts and supports more than 73,000 jobs in the state.

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