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BP gives Gulf states $1 billion for restoration, Florida to get $100 million

by Dara Kam | April 21st, 2011

The day after the first anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion, British Petroleum announced it is giving $1 billion to the five Gulf Coast states – Louisiana, Texas, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida – and federal agencies for early restoration efforts.

Florida will get $100 million to spend on environmental projects related to damages caused by the oil spill.

The $1 billion will fund projects including rebuilding of coastal marshes, beach replenishment, ocean conservation and restoration of barrier islands and wetlands that provide natural protection from storms, according to a press release issued by the National Resource Trustees for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a coalition of state and federal agencies.

“One year after the largest oil spill in our history, we take a major step forward in the recovery of the Gulf of Mexico, for the environment and the people who depend on it for their livelihood and enjoyment. Today’s agreement is a down payment on our promise to protect and restore the Gulf,” said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator.

Each of the states, including Florida, will receive $100 million to spend on projects. NOAA and the Department of the Interior will each get $100 million. And the remaining $300 million will given to state proposals selected by the trustees.

Although Florida Panhandle beaches and waters are clean, submerged tar mats remain just offshore in Escambia County. The county’s chief scientist told Gov. Rick Scott and others during a promotional tour of the area yesterday that the mats have got to go.

Local officials have tried for months to get BP and federal officials to clean up the tar mats, fearing a storm could cause tar to wash up on shore and scare away visitors just as Northwest Florida is bouncing back from a dismal tourist season last year in the aftermath of the disaster.

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3 Responses to “BP gives Gulf states $1 billion for restoration, Florida to get $100 million”

  1. Jimbo Says:

    I like how Lubchenco, says that the $1 billion is a down payment on ‘OUR’ promise.
    I wasn’t aware that the federal government was committed to spending money on cleanup or restoration. Sounds more like the ‘OUR’ is the complicity of negligence between BP and our government.
    And why is some of the money going to federal agencies when BP owes billions in fines? In other circumstances like this, we call that PAYOLA!
    As usual we can expect government agencies to misappropriate the money for things unrelated to tourism and restoration. In fact one municipality in another state spent some of their money on a fleet of new cars, including a new $50k Tahoe for the mayor, tazor guns for police, and other items not related to tourism or restoration.
    BP is crooked and so is our government.

  2. Conch6th Says:

    that’s ok Rick Scott will just send it back, claiming we don’t need the handout…

  3. Matt Gasper Says:

    Is that enough money to build high speed rail now!! What a dopey governor.

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