We're posting this blog that originally ran on the Environment Florida Research & Policy Center website.

Back in January, when the Trump administration announced plans to open 90 percent of U.S. coastlines to drilling, the opposition protested loudly. See two examples here and here.

At Environment Florida Research & Policy Center, our take on the administration’s plan is this: it’s a disaster. Our coasts are too beautiful and the risks are too great, as the world saw with the Deepwater Horizon explosion. And any plan designed to find and harvest more oil is unneeded (renewables are surging and clean cars are selling).

Florida has found itself at the center of the debate, given the drama of whether Florida’s coasts are in the Trump plan or out. I pointed out that the administration was playing games with Florida, including this quote in the Orlando Sentinel:

“The administration is playing ‘Hokey Pokey’ with Florida's coasts. First they put them in, then they take them out, and now this morning we hear they aren't out after all. We're getting shaken all about.”

But lately, things have been a little more quiet from Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and the rest of the administration, which hasn’t yet released a second version of the offshore drilling plan.

We’re hoping to fill this quiet time with some noise, and we want Florida’s congressional delegation to join us in making it. We need our delegation and other elected officials to weigh in with the Trump administration and the Department of Interior, urging them to cancel the offshore drilling expansion plan.

Environment Florida Research & Policy Center will have organizers out in coastal cities getting petitions signed, taking photo-petitions (photos of people holding signs, like Paulina and Bryan from Boynton Beach in the picture), talking with small business owners and getting them involved, generating media, and more.

We need to get to the point where all of Florida’s delegation opposes expanded offshore drilling, not only off Florida’s shores but anywhere in the United States. And we want them to be as vocal about it as we are. (For those elected officials who already are, thank you!)

Let’s do what we can now to put the kibosh on expanded offshore drilling.