NextGen Climate on Friday recrafted its attack on Gov. Rick Scott and began airing a second ad telling him to return the $200,000 in campaign cash he accepted from the Collier Family, which leased land that became the site for oil drilling near the Everglades.
Like the first ad, the ad is airing in West Palm Beach and Fort Myers television markets.
NextGen Climate is funded by hedge fund billionaire and environmentalist Tom Steyer who promises to be a player in Florida's governor's race if he follows up on his promise to spend millions to defeat Scott. Steyer has committed $50 million of his own money to oppose the use of fossil fuels.
After NextGen Climate released its first ad earlier this month, the Republican Party of Florida responded with its own attack on Charlie Crist in the same markets.
As PolitiFact Florida found, there are a few degrees of separation between Scott and the oil drilling. The ad nonetheless accuses the Collier family of profiting from drilling on their land near the Everglades and calls on Scott to return the cash. The family's company, Collier Resources, leased about 120,000 acres of mineral rights to the Dan. A. Hughes Company. Hughes received a state permit to conduct the controversial hydraulic fracking in the region.
After injecting the acid, Hughes workers injected a mix of sand and chemical gel under pressure to prop open the new fractures and let the oil flow out, a process not covered by the DEP permit. DEP fined Hughes $25,000.
The governor has tried to repair his environmental record in recent weeks in the face of Steyer's t announcements. launching a "Let's Keep Florida Beautiful Tour" and vowing to steer more money into environmental causes.
He also sat down with climate scientists this week in his office who urged him to act now to develop a plan for Florida to mitigate the impact of climate change. The governror, however, neither accepted their conclusion that the globe's warming is caused by humans, nor would he commit to doing anything to address their concerns.