The current ban on oil and gas exploration in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico off Florida expires in 2022 but proposals to accelerate and expand drilling areas are being developed. The Federal agency tasked with making recommendations on drilling in our coastal waters is the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
“Now that the public record includes this very public, premature and unequivocal statement by the secretary, any final decision that excludes Florida is actually more vulnerable to challenge than if he had said nothing”
…a senior Interior Department official said that Florida’s coastal waters had not been excluded after all.
“But now, suddenly, Secretary Zinke announces plans to drill off Florida’s coast and four days later agrees to ‘take Florida off the table.’
“I’m really just disgusted that we’re even having to have this conversation again,” said St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, a Democrat. “You don’t have to look back too many years to the BP oil spill”