- Bill GalvanoState Senator
Tell Sen. Haridopolos: Don't Drill Our Florida Beaches!
On April 26 2011, Florida Senate President Mike Haridopolos said that new oil drilling is needed in the Gulf of Mexico, a reversal from last year, when, in the wake of the BP spill, he said Florida was going to “turn the page” away from drilling.
Haridopolos, who had been pushing for new drilling near Florida up until the April 20, 2010 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon and the largest oil spill in U.S. history, called that spill “a game changer.”
Now he has changed positions again, saying that $4 gasoline is all the reason we need to open Florida's coastline to offshore drilling. Unfortunately, the facts are not with the Senator and drilling near our precious beaches would have no measureable impact on the total oil supply or prices. It would merely put our coastal environment and economy at risk for the sake of allowing oil companies to sqeeze out slightly higher profit margins.
- State Senator
- Florida State Senate
After the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf last year, Floridians realized that the threats to our unique coastal environment and economy are too great to consider opening state territorial waters to offshore drilling.
Unfortunately, some Senators have recently claimed that $4 gasoline is all the reason we need to open Florida's coastline to offshore drilling.
The facts are not with these Senators, and independent research shows that drilling near our precious beaches would have no measureable impact on the total oil supply or prices. It would merely put our coastal environment and economy at risk for the sake of allowing oil companies to sqeeze out slightly higher profit margins.
Consider our state's financial health:
Tourism brings in nearly $60 billion to Florida each year, which amounts to $3.4 billion in state tax revenues, and directly employs over 900,000 people. It is the state's largest employer.
If Gulf Coast counties lost just 10 percent of their tourism and leisure jobs and spending, the estimated losses would be 39,000 jobs and $2.2 billion. If that number is increased to 50%, 195,000 Florida jobs would be eliminated and $10.9 billion lost – and that's just in the Florida Panhandle.
Please consider the health of Florida's environment and economy and our unique situation as both a tourist destination as well as a destination for countless marine animals and shorebirds. We don't need oil rigs off our shores.
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