19 June 2008 00:15 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Many residents in Florida are now in favour of drilling off of the state's coasts due to rising oil and gasoline prices, a representative to the state's chamber of commerce said on Wednesday.
The Florida Chamber of Commerce supports a proposal by Governor Charlie Crist, who wants the federal government to lift its ban on offshore oil drilling.
In the past, several Florida lawmakers would oppose any lifting of the ban, said Joanna Bonfanti, a government affairs representative for the chamber.
"More recently, as prices have continued to climb, you are seeing a little bit of a shift in attitude," she said.
Drilling technology has improved, lessening the possibility of oil spills fouling the state's beaches, she said.
"We, of course, are concerned about our tourist environment," Bonfanti said. However, the state also needs to balance its need for fuel.
"Right now, we are a little out of balance," she said.
In fact, state polls show that more residents in Florida are concerned about high gasoline prices, she said. Moreover, high gasoline prices are making out-of-state trips to Florida beaches prohibitively expensive for some travellers.To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect
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