In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) introduced this bill to ensure that coastal communities which might be negatively impacted by a foreign oil spill have a recourse to fund cleanup efforts:
“With the increasing probability of foreign nations drilling near our shores, American taxpayers across the country are at risk of footing the bill to bail out the mistakes of foreign oil companies. This bill ensures that won't happen and guarantees our coastal communities will have the resources they need for clean up and recovery if they are affected by a foreign spill.”
Lead cosponsor Rep. Darren Soto (D-FL) added:
"In Florida and around America, we must protect our beautiful beaches and coastal areas both now and in the future. This bill would hold foreign oil drilling companies fully responsible for spills near our shores."
This legislation has the support of 46 cosponsors in the House, including 28 Democrats and 18 Republicans. An identical version of this legislation passed the House during the last Congress on a voice vote, but the bill was never considered in the Senate.
Of Note: There are several Caribbean countries that have begun or are considering offshore oil extraction, including Trinidad and Tobago, The Bahamas, and Cuba. According to the Council on Foreign Relations, oil from a spill off the Cuban coast would reach Florida within six to ten days.
Media:Summary by Eric Revell(Photo Credit: greg0070 / iStock)