Scott: No Offshore Drilling Off Florida’s Coast Until It’s Safe

January 16, 2011

The two men may have different takes on offshore oil drilling, but former U.S. Sen. Bob Graham and Gov. Rick Scott agreed  that no drilling should occur until adequate safeguards are in place to prevent a repeat of the worst oil spill in U.S. history.

“Neither of us wants any drilling until we are very comfortable that it is safe,” Scott told reporters after the meeting. “We can’t’ afford the environmental damage or the economic damage for our state.”

Graham met with Scott to discuss the findings of a federal commission set up to find out what went wrong with the BP Deepwater Horizon oil rig. Graham, co-chairman of the National Oil Spill Commission, was in Tallahassee as part of a national swing to publicize findings of the report that found untested drilling materials, lax government oversight and rig worker error combined to cause the tragic spill.

Scott has said he supports offshore drilling if proper safeguards can be guaranteed. During his campaign for governor, Scott said he agreed with a moratorium on drilling put in place after the spill by President Barack Obama.

But later in December, Scott was critical of a broader decision by the administration to ban most drilling in the eastern Gulf for seven years.

“I think the further away they are from the coast ,the more protection the coast will have,” Graham said.

Pictured: Gov. Rick Scott, center, and former U.S. Senator Bob Graham, left, speak to reporters  after meeting to discuss the findings of the National Oil Spill Commission, co-chaired by Graham. Photo by Mike Peltier for, click to enlarge.


13 Responses to “Scott: No Offshore Drilling Off Florida’s Coast Until It’s Safe”

  1. David Huie Green on January 21st, 2011 2:49 pm

    “The big companies that have the money to start these projects aren’t. They are keeping their money. ”

    I hate to be contrary after an amen, but I have to be true to my nature. Even if we had all the electrical energy we could use, we still have the problem of electric cars with limited range before long recharges and expensive batteries. We could probably build hundreds of geothermal power plants in Iceland–with their permission, of course–but the energy needs to be portable and useful where there are people.

    Further, the big companies don’t really stuff their cash under the mattress. They keep some in reserve in banks which loan them out at interest so they grow over time. The loans can be used to start other companies or to finance expansions or repairs. More and more they are being used to finance governmental debt making short term life better.

    Reserves are usually a small part of what corporations do with their money. The big parts include dividends to the people who invested in the company in the first place or the people who bought their shares of the company. Those people in turn either put the dividend money in savings or spend it. In savings it will likely finance other ventures unless the savings go into financing government debt too. The expenditures will go toward purchases of goods and services which make the shareholders’ lives better and give jobs to those who supply them. Sometimes those benefiting live elsewhere.

    Some of the money goes into diversification, starting or buying into other companies in case the demand for the primary product dries up.

    Some of the ventures within the companies go into research and development.

    David considering transactions

  2. Just An Old Soldier on January 21st, 2011 12:31 pm

    Personally, I’d like to see more Nuclear Power in our State, and unfettered access to our oil so that Business can come in and access our rich mineral resources. I’d like to see more use of liquid propane/natural gas for our transportation needs too, if it is cost effective.

    Foreign oil is a dagger on our necks. It would be great to have other energy resources developed, but we’re not using what we have now!

    Build a Nuclear Plant, or even a dozen – and continue building with the future in mind – perhaps we could even be the South’s main electricity provider.

    Think of all those jobs.

  3. PolythenePam on January 21st, 2011 11:11 am

    Amen DHG I agree. Even if we all drove electric cars, right now our electricity is produced by burning coal, not as clean or as effective as gasoline cars. How about wind energy off the coast. Oh and Solar panel “farms” like out west. There are answers that would produce clean renewable energy and JOBS but someone has to take the initiative. The big companies that have the money to start these projects aren’t. They are keeping their money. That leads me to thinking why we don’t get more industry here in this county so people can have jobs. Reasons I’ve heard: Too many political complications taxes etc. Local population isn’t smart enough to provide the labor. That leads me back to thinking about the schools. Hmmmmmm. Just touching on alot of problems here. Outsiders’ perceptions of the Gulf Coast inhabitants mentality…..

  4. David Huie Green on January 20th, 2011 2:20 pm

    “we don’t have to have the latest, newest crap that they are shoving down our throats – - – even George Bush said we are addicted to oil. every addict knows to get clean all you have to do is not take the drug. ”

    Despite rumors to the contrary, nobody’s forcing us to buy from other places or to buy what we don’t need or keep what we don’t want anymore. Those are individual decisions made by free people. They often decide they wante more–not less.

    The only way to stop them from making those free choices is to force them to do things OUR way, whatever that happens to be. It’s fine if OUR way is MY way, but not so fine if OUR way is somebody else’s way and YOU might not like MY way.

    Further, even though President Bush called it an addiction, it isn’t. We use petroleum as an energy source because it is cheaper, safer and more portable than most alternative sources of energy.

    Oil is liquid-easy to move around.
    Has a high energy content-a little goes a long way.
    Burns fairly cleanly so less pollution problems than with coal or wood.
    Does not have to be mined, so usually there’s less environmental damage than any other source of energy.
    Versatile so we can pave roads with part of it, make pipe, clothes, dyes; run ships, ambulances, power plants, trucks, go carts, chain saws, street sweepers, tanks on it.

    The problem isn’t that it’s so bad but that it’s so good.

    There’re two ways to wean people off it. Use more force than any dictator in history has ever had, or find a superior replacement. Stick or carrot, your choice.

    David for freedom

  5. art on January 18th, 2011 7:12 am

    there was a time in our great nation’s history, when there were those who said you buy from us, you pay our taxes or you won’t survive. our forefathers (mostly the women folk) said no. we wont buy your goods. we will spin our own cloth and we won’t wear the finest, but we will be warm. and we will be free. i don’t believe we are any less courageous than they. i see our younguns headed off to war, to die and be maimed, for what? do we really need all the latest electronic gadgets that go to the landfill in a matter of months? can’t we repair what we have and reuse it over and over like our parents did? was it really all that difficult or humiliating? can’t we take pride knowing we don’t have to have the latest, newest crap that they are shoving down our throats from far off lands that cost (literally arms and legs) to have shipped here? there isn’t a minority against drilling. don’t believe that rhetoric. scott, et al, are perfect examples. their motive may be different than yours or mine, but none of us want to be slaves. even george bush said we are addicted to oil. every addict knows to get clean all you have to do is not take the drug. it means getting your life back. we as americans need our lives back.

  6. lady on January 17th, 2011 10:03 pm

    The oil rigs are not the only ones polluting the waters offshore. I know for a fact, have seen with my own eyes, fisherman emptying their waste in the water when they get thru fishing, no matter what it is. I know someone that saw this and the company made their employees take nets and get the debris the fisherman left in water. If the employees on a rig are caught polluting water they are heavily reprimanded. There was a terrible mistake made on the BP spill and I hope our beaches overcome the oil still washing up but we have to have these rigs or else forever depend on foreign companies.

  7. Berni on January 17th, 2011 8:38 pm

    JimD is exactly right. These rigs may not return for many years, which only increases our need for foreign sources of oil. This is exactly what politicians want if it helps keep them in control. Gas prices are only going to keep rising! The scariest words in the world are “We are from the government and we are here to help!” I for one don’t think I can stand to have any more help from them.

  8. art on January 17th, 2011 9:01 am

    berni we could also be more self reliant if we just learned to reduce reuse recycle. we may even not need foreign oil if we become united and deternined to restrict what we use in our homes and businesses as far as oetroleum products go. it doesnt mean we have to go back to the dark ages either. all we have to do is get of the mindset that we can do it and we can. we can be conservative, frugal and not waste what we have already…we are running out of room at the landfills, lest we forget!

  9. Capt on January 16th, 2011 1:52 pm

    Berni i like the why u think it’s about time someone opened there eye’s
    BTW the Oil company’s Have been drilling off of FL. for awhile just no one has noticed LOL 24 miles south of Pensacola pass it’s a grey area between Al. Fl. line, Still in Fl.( International waters),people that do a lot of offshore fishing know about it.
    And i believe there has also been exploratory drilling on the Destin Dome which has one of the worlds largest gas deposit. This is about 60miles + /- south of Santa Rosa Island. The American people are blind just because they can’t see it don’t mean it not happening

  10. JimD on January 16th, 2011 1:29 pm

    As I posted on another article from…the Mexican and Cuban governments are drilling in waters miles from the US shores. The deep water rigs companies have spent millions of investment dollars on will be move to the coast of Africa or perhaps as noted in a recent article on BP…signing an agreement to drill in Siberia with Russia…in any case the rigs may not to return for many years; leaving America lacking a reliable source of oil from within in our own territory. And in the economic crisis of today more importantly job good paying jobs, not minimum wage. What Tallahassee wants is just what CW (January 16th, 2011 8:00 am ) has commented on…a servitude work force for the people of the Gulf Coast. All of those years of planning and savings are for not… cash in those college savings plans, there is no need for a college education or skilled work force to selling flip-flops and suntan oil and clean the condo’s and hotels of the vacationing public between Memorial and Labor Day.

  11. David Huie Green on January 16th, 2011 9:17 am

    and when a politician gets to define what is “adequate,” the less trusting place their hands tightly on their bill folds–usually in vain

  12. C W on January 16th, 2011 8:00 am

    Great, no good paying jobs for FL, everyone can work as a waitress or condo cleaner.

  13. Berni on January 16th, 2011 7:53 am

    Just another group of politicians who don’t understand or care about the impact of their decisions. No matter how hard politicians poush thier “green” agenda, the fact remains that we are reliant on natural gad, oil, and coal for the majority of our basic energy needs. That is not going to change overnight. I am assuming that they feel it is in this nation’s best interest to rely on foreign sources. I love our beautiful shores and coast but we have had another knee jerk reaction to something that was a result of growing demand. Until we all stop driving gas driven engines, traveling, using electricity to heat/cool our homes, using products that contain petroleum, and go back to living in the dark ages, we need to get a grip! We as a nation could be self-reliant if they would get their heads out of the sand and stop catering to the minority who are against drilling.

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