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We Floridians love our coasts. We love our fishing. We love to swim and surf and eat seafood and build sand castles. Florida’s beaches are pure white stretches of bliss that feed our souls, a natural gift as important as the Rocky Mountains or the Grand Canyon.

Now, as we face the Gulf of Mexico's worst ever environmental disaster, the British Petroleum oil spill off Louisiana, we must ask: How could it possibly be worth it to risk the health of Florida’s number-one economic engine – its coasts – at the hands of the careless and unaccountable oil industry?

In this volume, 38 writers, scientists and students share their abiding love of Florida’s Gulf of Mexico coast and its sea life. Unspoiled reminds us that now is the time to shift from the oil dependent, industrial economy that is devastating our planet and driving climate change. It is time to transform our culture into a way of living in balance with the greater web of all beings, a culture based on truly sustainable lifestyles and clean, renewable energy sources.

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Edited by:
Susan Cerulean, Janisse Ray,
and A. James Wohlpart

Illustrations by:
David Moynahan



Doug Alderson
Marty Ambrose
Bill Belleville
Erin Canter
Susan Cerulean
Felicia Coleman
Jan DeBlieu
Connie May Fowler
Thomas Hallock
William F. Hammond
Lola Haskins
Julie Hauserman
Grace C. Jackson
Jeff Klinkenberg
Christopher Koenig
Ellie Alexandra Levy
Megan M. Melvin
Myra Mendible
Jono Miller
O. Victor Miller
Jesse Millner
Julie Morris
Riki Ott
Oannes Arthur Pritzker
Dawn Evans Radford
Mandie Rainwater
Janisse Ray
Diane Roberts
Jack Rudloe
Michael Savarese
Matt Smith
Linda Taylor
Crystal Wakoa
Jessica Wheeler
A. James Wohlpart
Kathryn Keene Wohlpart
Sasha Linsin Wohlpart
Edward C. Woodward

Unspoiled postcard image

“A lively assemblage of strong arguments for the environmental preservation of Florida’s wonderful wild coasts.”
– Peter Matthiessen, National Book Award-winning American novelist

“A lyrical volume to remind Floridians that our coastline is not just our greatest natural asset. It's our greatest asset, period. Unspoiled also evokes another state treasure: our writers. Florida's literary luminescence shines from these pages.”
– Cynthia Barnett, Senior Writer at Florida Trend magazine, and author of Mirage: Florida and the Vanishing Water of the Eastern U.S.

"The potential benefits to Florida of offshore drilling are modest; the risks incalculable. Thirty eight writers have drawn a line in the sand and joined a growing chorus of voices across the state in support of the best of what Florida represents, now and in the future.”
– John Moran, nature photographer and author of Journal of Light: The Visual Diary of a Florida Nature Photographer

Center for Environmental and Sustainability Education at Florida Gulf Coast UniversityPublication of this book was made possible in part by a subvention from the Center for Environmental and Sustainability Education at Florida Gulf Coast University. The Center works toward realizing the dream of a sustainable and peaceful future for Earth through scholarship, education, and action.


Connie Bersok · Bill and Rene Burnett · Kathryn Wohlpart Chou · Margaret and Tom Clark · The Cooper Brown Family · Florida Wildlife Federation · Roberta Isleib and John Brady · Linda Jamison · Mary Beth McBride and Tom Anderson · Ann and Don Morrow · Ellen Shapiro · Elise and Steve Smith · Shaw Stiller and Heidi E. Recksiek · Trudy Thompson · Martha Weinstein · Kimberly and Paul Wheeler · Meg Whitmer · Jack and Ellen Winchester · Al and Pam Wohlpart