Florida lawmakers in Congress have filed a bill to retain the moratorium on offshore drilling for at least another decade.
U.S. Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, both Republicans, recently introduced the American Shores Protection Act, which would extend a drilling ban former President Donald Trump implemented last September until 2032.
The moratorium would apply in the south Atlantic Ocean and the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
“From beautiful beaches that draw tourists from around the world to housing critical military infrastructure, Florida’s coastlines are vital to our state and national economies,” Rubio said in a statement.
“Protecting Florida’s unique coasts and vital military assets has long been a priority of mine. I am grateful for the steps taken by the Trump Administration to ensure the existing moratorium in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico remains in place beyond 2022, but we must do more.”
“This legislation,” he added, “would solidify the protections that President Trump implemented, ensuring that both of Florida’s coasts will remain safe from executive action to revoke the moratorium.”
Scott, in a statement, noted, “As Governor of Florida, I fought for and secured a commitment from the Trump administration to ban oil drilling off Florida’s coasts.”
“While I’m glad the moratorium on drilling was extended for another 10 years under the Trump Administration, it’s time to codify this ban into law. I’m proud to join Senator Rubio in this important fight to preserve and protect Florida’s natural resources for generations to come.”
Rep. Mike Waltz, whose district is along the Atlantic coast, filed a similar version in the House.
“Preserving Florida’s beaches will be critical to our state’s booming economic comeback and we must continue to focus on conservation efforts to ensure our shores remain clean,” said Waltz. “By making law the ban on offshore drilling, we can focus our state’s environmental efforts on water quality and reducing red tide that is killing our marine life and devastating our beaches. I’m grateful to work with Senator Rubio to put Florida’s coasts first.”
“By making law the ban on offshore drilling, we can focus our state’s environmental efforts on water quality and reducing red tide that is killing our marine life and devastating our beaches. I’m grateful to work with Senator Rubio to put Florida’s coasts first.”
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