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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

After oil spill, Mike Sole to leave DEP



Mike Sole, the well-regarded head of the Department of Environmental Protection, is leaving his post now that the Deepwater Horizon well is on the verge of being permanently capped. He is the first major department head to leave as Charlie Crist exits the governor's office. His departure is also key because he held a prominent role in responding to the gulf oil spill. Florida officials will likely have much more to do, especially in evaluating the future environmental effects of the sub-surface oil.

A full release from Crist's office is below. It is unclear where Sole will be headed. Also, here's a copy of his resignation letter:  Download Soleresignation

Crist has named Mimi Drew as the interim secretary, effective Sept. 10. Drew is currently the deputy secretary for regulatory programs since 2007 and has been with the department since 1995 in the water resource management office.

“For more than 20 years, Secretary Sole has shown tremendous leadership in safeguarding one of Florida’s greatest assets – our beautiful natural environment. During his time at the helm of the Department of Environmental Protection, he has championed Florida’s Everglades restoration, including expanding our efforts to the northernmost parts of an ecosystem that is essential to the water quality of millions of Floridians, as well as the vital estuary of Florida Bay.  
“Mike has also been instrumental in Florida’s first efforts to address climate change by increasing state government’s energy efficiency and reliance on alternative fuels such as solar energy and ethanol. He also worked to pass groundbreaking bipartisan energy legislation that set Florida on its first steps to diversify the state’s energy sources, promote energy conservation and efficiency, and spur economic growth.

“As the point person for Florida’s response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Mike has demonstrated unwavering commitment and invaluable insight into what actions must be taken. Now that the well is close to being capped permanently, we wish Mike well as he leaves next month to pursue other opportunities. We wish him the very best in his new endeavors.”


[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 10:16am]


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