Audubon Florida News

Senator Bill Nelson’s RESTORE Act Amendment Passes

posted on March 8, 2012 in Gulf Oil Spill,Online Advocacy

In a big win for Florida and the Gulf Coast region, Senator Bill Nelson’s RESTORE Act amendment passed today in a 76 – 22 vote. The amendment was part of a larger Transportation bill that will go for a full vote next Tuesday. We are confident it will pass, but as you know, a lot can happen between now and then. Please share this message (see buttons below) with your personal network of friends and conservation allies so we can see the RESTORE Act through to final passage. Thank you for all that you do.

Here’s what the RESTORE the Gulf Act and the Land Conservation Act could do for conservation:

    • Specifically direct 80 percent of Clean Water Act civil penalties resulting from the oil spill to restoration of the Gulf Coast environment and local economies.   This could mean as much as $10-20 billion.
    • Distribute resources fairly and equitably to the  affected Gulf Coast states, allowing them to launch immediate  recovery efforts .
    • Ensure that the funds are spent responsibly and for their intended purposes.
    • Establish the Gulf Coast Ecosystem  Restoration Council which will develop and fund a comprehensive plan for the ecological recovery and resiliency of the Gulf Coast.
    • Provide $1.4 billion over the next two years for the Land and Water Conservation Fund for buying precious lands across America.

Congratulations to all our Audubon Advocates who spoke up on this critical issue. Together, we made a difference for Florida and our Gulf Coast as a whole.

2 Comments

  1. It sounds like a good bill,but the State of Florida was not really hurt by the oil spill. The news media hyped it up. Yes there was some small bits of oil, but the State that was really hurt was Louisiana. All the photos of Gov.Crist with oil-covered pelicans were taken in Alabama (Mobile). The news media hurt the Florida Panhandle by saying there was oil and making it sound like it was really bad. I was there, I saw the beaches (very few tar balls) The businesses were hurt in the Panhandle, by the news media showing photos of Alabama and Louisiana coasts

    Comment by T.Wilkinson — March 8, 2012 @ 9:10 pm

  2. Actually, Florida *did* suffer damages as a result of the spill. Some were a result of oil itself (they are still cleaning on the beaches of the western Panhandle), some were a result of the monitoring and spill response activities (seagrass scarring, destruction of sand dunes, sea turtle nests, beach nesting bird colonies, the closing off of dune lake ocean outfalls in the central Panhandle). Further, the ripple of the oil and dispersants as they echo through the food web will have long-term effects Gulf-wide. Restore Act funds will be used to help with both ecological and economic restoration. BP’s fines are penalties for damage done in the Gulf. Those dollars should be reinvested in the Gulf region, rather than spent on bridges in Alaska or battleships in Virginia. This RESTORE Act language will make sure the money is spent to right the spill’s wrongs.

    Comment by Julie Wraithmell — March 9, 2012 @ 9:27 am

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