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API: Explore Offshore Kicks Off Florida Campaign For Affordable and Reliable Domestic Energy

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TALLAHASSEE, August 15, 2018 – Today, Explore Offshore national co-chair Jim Nicholson, who served as Secretary of Veterans Affairs during the George W. Bush Administration, and state co-chairs, Dr. Miriam Ramirez and Former Lieutenant Governor Jeff Kottkamp, held the first event in Florida of Explore Offshore, a bipartisan national coalition to promote responsible access to domestic offshore natural gas and oil resources to help supply reliable, affordable energy for all Floridians.

Former Secretary of Veterans Affairs Jim Nicholson, Explore Offshore Co-Chairman: “Our American way of life and the freedoms we enjoy are undoubtedly linked to access to affordable, reliable energy. At the same time, 94% of America’s offshore energy resources are completely off-limits to natural gas and oil development, disallowing hundreds of thousands of American jobs and abundant domestic energy supply, and keeping us reliant on foreign sources.

“As we plan ahead as a country, access to our offshore energy resources is a key part of the nation’s economic future and national security, and that is why I am pleased to chair the national Explore Offshore USA coalition. Uniting supporters from Virginia to Florida, we will continue to work to ensure access to our offshore energy resources to support reliable, affordable energy, boost national security, and assure a strong United States economy.”

Jeff Kottkamp, Former Florida Lieutenant Governor, Explore Offshore Florida Co-Chairman: “Affordable energy is critical to the quality of life in the Sunshine State. We are speaking with our local leaders throughout Florida to discuss ways to maintain our state’s natural beauty and meet the energy needs of our growing population of over 20 million residents and 110 million annual visitors.”

Dr. Miriam Ramirez, Former Puerto Rico State Senator, Explore Offshore Florida Co-Chairman: “We can support thriving tourism industries here in Florida all while developing offshore energy resources that could create high-paying jobs in our state. We cannot take access to reliable, affordable energy for granted.” 

Florida Petroleum Council Director David Mica: “Explore Offshore is a united, bipartisan voice and we are working to ensure that Florida has all options available for boosting job creation and its economic and energy future. As Florida remains one of the largest consumers of energy in the country, offshore development is critical to our energy security and our economy.”

Florida is one of the largest energy consumers in the United States and is the nation’s third largest consumer of motor fuels and third largest consumer of electricity. In addition, two-thirds of Florida's net electricity generation is fueled by natural gas – almost all of which is imported from other states. Offshore development in the federal waters off Florida’s coast is projected to create more than 56,000 jobs by 2035 and could result in more than $2.6 billion in private investment per year in state revenues. Development of these offshore energy resources can contribute not only to U.S. energy security but to Florida’s own economic future.


Explore Offshore, a project of the American Petroleum Institute, is a bipartisan coalition dedicated to safe and environmentally responsible access to America’s offshore energy resources to help supply affordable energy for consumers, small businesses, and manufacturers. In addition to meeting the growing energy demands of America’s families and businesses, America’s geopolitical interests and national security interests are tied to access to domestic oil & gas. This broad coalition of business organizations, community leaders and local associations comes together to voice support for reliable, safe, and affordable energy. Our mission is to unite supporters of offshore energy development and promote its benefits and its importance to our economy and U.S. energy security. This coalition will give a voice to diverse supporters of offshore energy development, educate the public about the benefits of offshore energy development, and ultimately aim to provide a favorable public opinion climate for the beginning of energy exploration in the Mid and South Atlantic and Eastern Gulf. Learn more at

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 10.3 million U.S. jobs and nearly 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 600 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 47 million Americans.