Court clears way for constitutional amendment that will protect Florida’s coast by banning offshore drilling

October 17, 2018
Contact: Alissa Schafer, SACE, 754-307-7451, [email protected]

Tallahassee, Fla. — Today, the Florida Supreme Court cleared Amendment 9 for the 2018 general election ballot in November. The constitutional amendment bundles two provisions: the first to place a ban in the Florida Constitution on offshore oil and gas drilling in state waters and the second to prohibit vaping — the use of vapor-producing electronic devices, such as e-cigarettes — in enclosed indoor workplaces.

Amendment 9 would ban drilling for exploration or extraction for both oil and gas in Florida’s state waters, which extend three nautical miles from the shore on the Atlantic coast and nine nautical miles on the Gulf coast.

Floridians across the state are rallying behind this effort to ban drilling in state waters to ensure a sustainable, clean water future for Florida. A growing, diverse list of organizations has endorsed Amendment 9, including nonprofit organizations, and business and public health groups.

“Tourism is Florida’s biggest industry, and drilling is just not worth the risk,” said Susan Glickman, Florida Director of Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. “Drilling is dirty business. Thousands of oil spills happen every year in U.S. waters, and increasingly intense hurricanes add to the risk of oil spills.”

Southern Alliance for Clean Energy Executive Director, Dr. Stephen A. Smith, added that this initiative is a crucial step to protect Florida’s future:

“While there is currently a ban for near-shore drilling in Florida’s waters, state lawmakers could easily lift that, and they tried before. Florida needs this constitutional amendment to ensure long-term protection of the state’s coasts, including its beautiful beaches and marine life, which help drive the state’s robust tourism economy.”

Several organizations, including the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy and the Center for Biological Diversity, have formed a Yes On 9 coalition to educate Florida voters about Amendment 9. The campaign website is To view the list of endorsements for Amendment 9, go here. Additional campaign resources are linked below:


About Southern Alliance for Clean Energy
Founded in 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization that promotes responsible energy choices to ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at