Advertisement

Oil spill impact could hit Florida hard

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., June 8 (UPI) -- Oil gushing from BP's deepwater well in the Gulf of Mexico may cost the Florida economy $10.9 billion and erase 195,000 jobs, a university report said Tuesday.

The preliminary report by University of Central Florida economist Sean Snaith said that estimate is based on an assumption that the spill's impact is limited to counties along the gulf coast, The St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times reported.

Advertisement

Snaith is director of the school's Institute for Economic Competitiveness. He declined to discuss what the impact would be if the oil reaches the state's east coast along the Atlantic. "Let me deal with the Gulf Coast first," he told the Times in an interview.

The newspaper said the cost would rise sharply if the oil reaches the Florida east coast.

Meanwhile, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers toured the Florida Panhandle in search of oil, which is causing tar balls and "mousse mats" on beaches as far east as Panama City, the Palm Beach Post reported.

The newspaper said cleanup workers used hand-held nets and absorbent mats, scooping up a ribbon of pumpkin-colored tar nearly a mile long near Perdido Key Monday evening.

Advertisement

The Tallahassee Democrat said responders trained in cleanup efforts were trying to cope with dime-sized pieces of oil on the high tide line east of the pier on Pensacola Beach, while quarter-sized tar balls were located on Santa Rosa and Navarre beaches.

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement