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Biden Executive Order Staves Off Offshore Drilling Near Florida

Drilling rig at purple dusk
Arvind Vallabh / 500px/Getty Images/500px

New oil and gas development will remain paused in federal waters off Florida’s coasts under an executive order signed by President Joe Biden. 

The order is part of a seismic shift in federal policy on climate change under the new administration. 

The order reaffirms a 10-year moratorium on new drilling off the coasts of southeastern states including Florida, which former President Donald Trump announced shortly before the election. 

But for most of his term Trump had sought to expand offshore drilling. Erin Handy of Oceana says Biden’s action is good news in a state where offshore drilling is strongly opposed.  

“Over 100 Florida municipalities took a formal stand and passed resolutions over the last five years opposing offshore drilling. They know this is not the right way to go.” 

Biden’s order also calls for a review of the federal leasing and permitting program. Other orders are aimed at cutting emissions and doubling energy production from offshore wind turbines.

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Amy Green