SC Coast off limits for now; DHEC denies permit request for seismic surveying

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COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA)- In March of this year a company submitted a request to the Department of Health and Environmental Control to conduct a seismic survey off of the South Carolina coast.

On Monday, the department released its response to the application. DHEC control issued a 14-page letter to WesternGeco, the company seeking the permits for seismic testing.

“It basically said that seismic testing is inconsistent with our coastal protections,” explained Alan Hancock with the Coastal Conservation League. The organization has been very vocal about protecting the state’s coast.

In the letter DHEC writes about the known and unknown risks associated with seismic surveying both on the state’s marine life and economy.

Hancock added, “It’s bad for endangered North American Right Whales and it’s bad for the Loggerhead Sea Turtles that nest on our beaches. And it’s bad for our $23 billion tourism economy.”

Senator Chip Campsen helped pass a budget in the proviso preventing the issuance of permits for equipment related to offshore drilling to be on SC beaches.

We made decisions that we’re going to protect certain places create wildlife refugees for the benefit of the public and wildlife. We vowed to designate places along our coast as beachfront properties. There is simply no place on our coast right now that is consistent with the type of infrastructure needed for offshore drilling.

More than 1700 people submitted comments to DHEC opposing the permit.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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