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Fri Jan 12, 2018, 02:42 PM

State leaders slam Zinke for letting Florida off hook on drilling

Gov. Jay Inslee and Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray fired off angry letters that Zinke is unlikely to answer. They are all Democrats while Florida Gov. Rick Scott is a Republican and backer of President Trump.

Inslee cited two past spills off the Washington Coast, notably the 225,00 spill by Nestucca oil barge in 1988. The spill fouled beaches from Olympic National Park toCanada's Pacific Rim National Park on Vancouver Island. The Tenyo Maru collision in 1991, 20 miles off Cape Flattery, sent oil ashore on Olympic Park's fabled Point of Arches and Shi Shi Beach.

Addressing Zinke, Inslee wrote to the Secretary: "You recognized the contributions that coastal tourism make to (Florida's) economy, and therefore the unique threats that oil and gas drilling activities provide to their economic sector.

"In Washington state, we also host a robust tourism and recreation economic sector, which is similarly dependent upon healthy marine and coastal ecosystems. Furthermore, Washington is home to the nation's largest shellfish industry . . ."


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