The Obama administration will allow offshore oil and gas exploration, ending a moratorium on drilling along most of the East Coast, according to a White House announcement.
The Chesapeake Bay Foundation opposes the part of the plan that would allow drilling off the shore of Maryland and Virginia, the organization said in a press release.
The nearby waters of the Atlantic Ocean are part of the Chesapeake Bay system, and species like the blue crab use the waters, the foundation said.
"Off shore drilling creates a new pollution source, one capable of significant, even devastating environmental damage from drilling, transportation, storage or refinement," CBF President Will Baker said in the release.
Baker added: "A perfect storm spill could destory an entire year class of blue crabs. The economic impact from any spill could be significant, hurting commercial watermen's livelihoods, recreational fishing and tourism."