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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sen. Bill Nelson okay with Obama's drilling plan; Rep. Kathy Castor is not



Senator_bill_nelson Sen. Bill Nelson:

"I’ve talked many times to (Interior Department) Secretary (Ken) Salazar and told him if they drilled too close to Florida’s beaches they’d be risking the state’s economy and the environment. I believe this plan shows they heeded that concern. And it ought to derail the scheme in the Florida Legislature to drill three miles offshore. Now I need to hear from Defense Secretary Robert Gates. And I want him to look me in the eye and assure me that this plan will not compromise national security by interfering with the unfettered space we have for training and testing our most sophisticated military weapons systems.”

Also okay with the deal is former Florida DEP chief Carol Browner, now assistant to the president for energy and climate change. She said in a conference call that the 125-mile buffer is good protection for the state.

But U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa, said, “Drilling for oil off of Florida’s west coast beaches would be a serious threat to Florida’s economy and jobs. Our long-term economic health is dependent on clean beaches and clean water. I oppose any threat to jobs and Florida’s tourism and fishing industries."


[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 11:25am]


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