WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, N.C. (AP) - Gov. Roy Cooper is urging North Carolina residents to contact the federal government and express their opposition to expanding offshore oil and gas exploration off the state's Atlantic coast.

Cooper spoke at a news conference Monday near Wilmington to repeat his criticism of the proposal by President Donald Trump's administration to open more waters to drilling.

The governor wants the North Carolina coast exempted, like Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced earlier this month that the government would do for Florida. Another administration official said last week nothing had been finalized.

Cooper says North Carolina has the same concerns about protecting the tourism industry as Florida does. He urged those watching the news conference to call the Interior Department or mail or send online formal comments to the agency.