Florida Local Elected Officials Support Statewide Ban on Fracking
Dear Legislative Delegation,
We, the undersigned city and county elected officials, are writing to urge you to support a ban on fracking in Florida. Fracking and the associated chemicals pose unacceptable risks to Florida families, tourists, our water supply, and economy.
Fracking is a risky drilling technique that sends millions of gallons of water, sand, and a mixture of dangerous and carcinogenic chemicals deep underground to break or dissolve rock to release oil and gas.
Floridians depend on aquifers as their main source of drinking water. With pollution and saltwater intrusion becoming more and more frequent, local officials are already working to protect our aquifers. Fracking requires several million gallons of water for each well and is a significant threat to water quality and availability in Florida. Our aquifers do not have enough water to spare for the massive amount of water needed to frack.
Despite growing concerns, the oil industry is pushing to drill in local communities around the state. Without a statewide fracking ban, there are few protections in place to stop those conventional drilling wells from turning into fracking wells. The industry has already fracked in Collier County, where there is existing conventional drilling. More permits to use conventional drilling are moving forward in Calhoun and Santa Rosa counties; these permits can easily turn into fracking without a ban in place.
Florida is a major tourist destination for the world. Tourists do not visit our beautiful state to be bombarded by the air and water pollution that comes with risky oil drilling and fracking. Florida’s tourism industry experienced a major downturn because of oil and gas development following the Deepwater Horizon BP oil spill disaster in 2010. Oxford Economics found that Gulf Coast states lost nearly $22.7 billion in tourism revenues due to the spill.
Across the state, 90 municipalities have passed measures against fracking. The state legislature needs to act and pass a statewide ban to ensure that our communities are healthy and that our local economies continue to grow throughout the state. Protecting Florida’s drinking water is responsibility of all public officials. We urge you to support a statewide fracking ban and to do everything you can to prohibit fracking and the disposal of fracking wastewater here in Florida.
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