For the Eleventh Year, Join Hands for Our Coast on May 16

Hands Across the Sand will return for the eleventh year on May 16, with a chance for communities up and down the coast to join together and say no to risky offshore drilling.

Chris Carnevale | February 20, 2020 | Events, Florida, North Carolina, Offshore Drilling, South Carolina
North Carolinians join hands on Rougemont Beach.

Hands Across the Sand will take place this year on Saturday, May 16 as the annual global day of action on which communities around the country and across the world join with their neighbors to show support for protecting the coast against the impacts of offshore drilling.


Offshore drilling risks our coastal economy, environment, and quality of life. Oil-free beaches support billions of dollars of income and employment for hundreds of thousands of people in the Southeast and must be protected for today’s generations and future. Offshore oil would threaten our coastal economies and has the potential to cause major oil spills, ongoing smaller spills, and leaks that occur as part and parcel of the oil industry.

Read how South Carolina leaders are pushing bills forward to protect our coasts.

It’s no wonder that given the huge risks of offshore drilling, coastal communities overwhelmingly oppose pushes by the federal government to place offshore oil drilling in the Atlantic and Eastern Gulf of Mexico. But the Trump Administration has proposed opening 90% of our nation’s ocean area to offshore drilling, and while it is currently not actively pursuing this proposal, it is still the official position of the administration and take action to tell your elected officials not to support this risky measure!

Photo of volunteers and South Carolina Rep. Cunningham. Photo credit: Coastal Conservation League

It’s up to us to show the federal government that expanding offshore drilling off our coast is a bad idea. It is local opposition to drilling that has caused the administration to put its drilling plans on indefinite hold. Showing more local opposition to drilling will help keep it that way!

Raise Your Voice 

Join your local Hands Across the Sand event on May 16 to rise with your neighbors and say “NO” to offshore drilling and “YES” to clean energy! The events are fun, simple, and make an impact. Folks gather at their local beach or other treasured coastal places to briefly join hands in a line as long as possible. The line is our way of “drawing our line in the sand” and rising up to protect our environment from offshore drilling. Event organizers usually have some other activities at the event and invite the local news to come and cover the event to help amplify the message. After the event is over, go ahead and enjoy some time at the beach that you’re fighting hard to protect!


This year will mark the eleventh year of Hands Across the Sand. There are typically several dozen events around the Southeast (Florida usually has the most events of any state, followed by North Carolina!). Visit and find your local event. Don’t see an event on the map near you? Sign up to host one! See the resources here to see how you can be empowered to host an event. See you on the beach on May 16 to save our shores together!

Can’t make the event but want to take action? Click here to sign a petition telling our leaders to not support offshore drilling!

Chris Carnevale
Based in Charleston, South Carolina, Chris is SACE’s Coastal Climate and Energy Manager and South Carolina State Affairs Liaison. Chris joined the SACE staff in 2011 to help build a…
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