Defense is Florida’s fourth largest industry, with a total
economic footprint of roughly $78.9 billion. The large area off Florida’s Gulf
coast – known as the eastern Gulf of Mexico – has a long history of providing
unconstrained access for military training and testing activities that are
essential to U.S. national security. Recognizing the importance of this area
for national defense training, Congress enacted the Gulf of Mexico Energy
Security Act (GOMESA) to protect this section of the Gulf from any offshore oil
and gas development in 2006.
For more information on how offshore drilling affects military readiness in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, click here.