Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Global Citizen

Last week, documentary maker and political activist Michael Moore threatened to begin fracking off the Florida coast, near the Mar-a-Lago resort owned by President Donald Trump.

He did so in response to a new White House proposal to increase offshore drilling for gas and oil.

Vincent DeVito, Counselor for Energy Policy at the U.S. Department of Interior, said at the time:

By proposing to open up nearly the entire OCS for potential oil and gas exploration, the United States can advance the goal of moving from aspiring for energy independence to attaining energy dominance.

This decision could bring unprecedented access to America’s extensive offshore oil and gas resources and allows us to better compete with other oil-rich nations.

The Obama administration considered these same areas for exploration but abandoned the idea in 2016 because of concerns from states, coastal residents and the military, which uses some of the waters.

Environmental and conservation nonprofits reacted with concern, as did Michael Moore, who responded by threatening to drill offshore of Mar a Lago, Trump's luxury golf resort, in Florida, listed as one of the states opened up to drilling in the proposals.

Moore tweeted:

Florida's governor Rick Scott was among a number of politicians in affected states who spoke up. In a statement he said he had:

asked to immediately meet with Secretary Zinke to discuss the concerns I have with this plan.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke (who unveiled the Trump administration proposal) met with Scott, who is running for Senate, in Florida.

An Interior Department spokesperson later said that the conservation led to a decision to remove,as Zinke announced on Tuesday evening,...

Florida from consideration for any new oil and gas platforms.

I support the governor's position that Florida is unique and its coasts are heavily reliant on tourism as an economic driver.

He continued:

President Trump has directed me to rebuild our offshore oil and gas program in a manner that supports our national energy policy and also takes into consideration the local and state voice.

Some Twitter accounts attempted to draw parallels between the Michael Moore Twitter threat to drill and the U-turn in policy specifically for the state of Florida.

In 2010 the Deepwater Horizon spill killed 11 people and sent at least 4.9 million barrels of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico. Florida was one of the states affected by the spill.

Public meetings will be held around the country starting on 16 January 2018 to receive comments on the plan.

Dates times and venues will be posted here.

indy100 has contacted Michael Moore for comment.


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