The danger is not just oil spills from rigs.
If we have producing oil and gas drilling rigs off our coast, the Lower Chesapeake Bay will undoubtedly become the Galveston Bay of the east coast.
The tanker traffic, storage tanks, chemical plants, refineries, pipelines and all the infrastructure that goes with them will line the shores.
The shores that are subsiding and very susceptible to flooding, particularly as sea levels rise. One good storm could create catastrophic damage on top of that vulnerability.
Remember decades back when the anchorages were jammed with coal colliers? Picture a jumble of oil tankers anchored and transiting along with the Navy ships training and loads of other coal and commercial shipping, fishing and recreational traffic.
Toss in a good nor’easter or a direct hit from even just a Cat 1 hurricane.
What could go wrong?
The Bay is our largest estuary. A source of breeding grounds for sea life up and down the entire Atlantic seaboard. We are struggling now to keep it healthy from the runoffs from rivers further north.