Florida's GOP governor opposes Trump move to expand offshore oil drilling

Florida's GOP governor opposes Trump move to expand offshore oil drilling
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Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) on Wednesday said he opposes the Trump administration’s proposal to expand drilling off the coast of Florida.

“I have already asked to immediately meet with Secretary Zinke to discuss the concerns I have with this plan and the crucial need to remove Florida from consideration," Scott said in a statement.

The Trump administration said Thursday that it is proposing significantly expanding areas available for offshore oil and natural gas drilling, including areas off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.

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Interior Secretary Ryan ZinkeRyan Keith ZinkeUS to approve import of black rhino killed in hunt Zinke must change direction and support conservation Energy development will likely land one bird on the Endangered Species list MORE said nearly all of the nation’s outer continental shelf, which includes waters off the coasts of Florida, California, Maine and Alaska, is being considered for drilling.

Environmental advocates panned the announcement as a giveaway to the oil industry.

Scott met with President Trump on New Year’s Eve, and the two discussed hurricane recovery efforts, infrastructure and “other matters important to Floridians.”

Scott, whose second term as governor will conclude at the end of 2018, is considered a top potential challenger to Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonMidterm polling data favors Democrats — in moderation Poll: Nelson and Scott tied in Florida Senate race Nelson campaign to donate K from Al Franken group to charity MORE (D-Fla.) in this year's midterm elections. Scott has not yet announced his intentions. 

Trump last September encouraged Scott to launch a Senate bid.