DeSantis Signs Florida Bill Making Climate Change A Lesser State Priority

Climate change will be a lesser priority in Florida and largely disappear from state statutes under legislation signed Wednesday by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis that also bans power-generating wind turbines offshore or near the state’s lengthy coastline.

Critics said the measure made law by the former Republican presidential hopeful ignores the reality of climate change threats in Florida, including projections of rising seas, extreme heat and flooding and increasingly severe storms.

It takes effect July 1 and would also boost expansion of natural gas, reduce regulation on gas pipelines in the state and increase protections against bans on gas appliances such as stoves, according to a news release from the governor’s office.

DeSantis, who suspended his presidential campaign in January and later endorsed his bitter rival Donald Trump, called the bill a common-sense approach to energy policy.

“We’re restoring sanity in our approach to energy and rejecting the agenda of the radical green zealots,” DeSantis said in a post on the X social media platform.

Florida is already about 74% reliant on natural gas to power electric generation, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Opponents of the bill DeSantis signed say it removes the word “climate’ in nine different places, moves the state’s energy goals away from efficiency and the reduction of greenhouse gases blamed for a warming planet.

Read full story at ABC News.