A Leap Day event in Tallahassee.
Tallahassee, FL -- Concerned Floridians used the extra day in 2020 to take to the streets of several cities and demand accountability from Governor DeSantis, who promised on his campaign trail to ban fracking. Clean water and community advocates brought light to the governor’s tendency to spend his time and attention with major corporate donors — rather than constituents — by offering Governor DeSantis an oversized $100,000 check, the amount Duke Energy recently paid the governor to play a round of golf with him.
Leap Day action in Tampa.
Florida is more vulnerable than nearly any other state to the hazards of fracking because of its delicate karst geology and the intricacies of its interconnected water networks and aquifer.
“Fracking not only has a devastating effect on our land and water, but the way legislators and others are willing to compromise our elements to make money is disturbing,” says Reverend Dr. Sylvia Sharps, a community advocate and participant in Saturday’s action. “I compare their pursuance of the approval of fracking to the effort that was put forth to make ‘private’ prisons ‘for people to make a profit from the caging of a human being’; Water becomes flammable and people have become objects to cage and prosper from. We will not understand the damage that has been done until we or our family is personally affected.”
Fracking ban advocates hold their signs at Saturday's Leap Day action in Spring Hill.
The constituents expressed their frustration that the governor has not responded to their calls for him to fulfill a major campaign promise to protect health and safety in their communities by passing a statewide fracking ban. The underlying call of today’s rally was that Governor DeSantis give the same attention to his constituents as he has to major corporate donors by explaining why he has not yet followed through with a ban. Despite multiple requests, the Governor’s office has not met with the Floridians Against Fracking coalition.
“We want Governor DeSantis to know that we’re holding him accountable,” said Brooke Errett, Florida Organizer with Food & Water Action, who took the lead on planning the demonstration in Tampa. “We think it’s unacceptable that he should favor the agendas of those who can pay him for his time over the needs of his constituents. He represents the people, not corporate interests. We hope that he takes note that this is how we’re using our extra day in 2020 — he needs to use his to ban fracking.”