Right now, oil giants Enterprise and Chevron are proposing to build a massive crude oil storage facility, offshore pipeline, and export terminal off the coast of Freeport, Texas.
The project is called the Sea Port Oil Terminal, or SPOT, and is an immediate threat to our Texas coastal communities, to our delicate environment, and to the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle – the world’s most endangered sea turtle.
Please use the below resources to take action to protect the Texas coast and endangered sea turtles and stop SPOT!
As we continue adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic, taking action on this issue is a great opportunity to teach children the importance of providing input in the development of rules and regulations that serve your community, as well as provides a fun activity for the whole family to enjoy that makes a difference for our planet!
The Sea Port Oil Terminal, or SPOT, includes an oil pipeline 168 miles long, with two 36-inch diameter pipes, stretching from Houston to Surfside Beach where it will eventually travel under the seafloor to an oil terminal 30 miles off the shore from Freeport.
The pipeline will cross 149 wetlands and one major river. It will pass by the drinking water wells for the Surfside community and through endangered sea turtle habitat, threatening the community’s drinking water and the local wildlife. The pipeline is anticipated to result in 568 spills over a 30-year period, twenty of which are considered “major” spills of 1,000 barrels of oil or more.
Due to the saturation of the U.S. oil market, SPOT would transport oil from the Permian Basin to Europe and Asia—substantially contributing to global air pollution, water pollution, noise pollution, and oil pollution.
The proposed Sea Port Oil Terminal (SPOT) is an immediate threat to Texas coastal communities, our delicate environment, and our personal and economic health:
Oil Spills: The SPOT terminal and supporting pipeline is anticipated to result in 568 spills over a 30-year period, twenty of which are considered “major” spills of 1,000 barrels of oil or more. An oil spill would affect 146-243 miles of shoreline, posing threats to sea turtles, marine mammals, and birds. It would destroy our coastal habitat, and adversely impact important industries like fishing and tourism.
Sea Turtles: The proposed pipeline would run directly through nesting habitat for critically endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtles. Any disturbance or oil spill would be detrimental to the global conservation work to protect these sea turtles. Both loggerhead and green sea turtles are year-round locals to our waters, and would also be largely impacted by the SPOT project.
Human Health: The pipeline would impact personal health. Pipeline production would release harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air that would reduce the air quality of the local community. These pipelines transport oil through our communities, aquifers, waterways and natural areas. Increased crude oil infrastructure spells disaster for our climate and increased emissions would impact our air and water quality with the release of harmful VOCs.
Economic Health: Any sizable spill would greatly impact local fisheries and the health of our local economies. Spills would cause die-offs of fish species, resulting in the possibility of people not wanting to consume contaminated food. Spills would also affect tourism due to beach closures. Many fishermen would be out of jobs or experience decreased wages. In addition, local restaurants would not be able to serve safe, local seafood. After the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico lost $94.7 million to $1.6 billion in revenue.
How You Can Stop SPOT
You, your family, and students can write letters to federal agencies, post public comments against the project, and express your concerns to Congress — joining a public movement to stop this horrific project and playing a key role in protecting our communities, wildlife, marine habitat, and the Gulf.
- Stop SPOT: Save our Sea Turtles Handout
- Stop SPOT Map & Graphic
- Instructions for Writing Letters
- Grade K-2 Letter Template
- Grade 3-8 Letter Template
- Instructions for Submitting Public Comments
- Link to Federal Register to Submit Comments
- SPOT Draft Environmental Impact Statement
- What did scientists learn from Deepwater Horizon? (Science Daily)
- ‘Of course it could happen again’: experts say little has changed since Deepwater Horizon (The Guardian)
- First Gulf of Mexico-wide survey of oil pollution completed 10 years after Deepwater Horizon (Science Daily)
- State responds to ‘oily water’ spill at Trans-Alaska Pipeline terminal in Valdez (Alaska Public Media)
- Offshore oil and gas platforms release more methane than previously estimated (Science Daily)
- After Oil Spills, Hidden Damage Can Last for Years (New York Times)