Add your name and be a citizen co-signer to our open letter to William White, the CEO of environmental non-profit, Charles Mott Foundation and the Chairman of the Board of US Sugar Corp -- a mega polluter of the Everglades.
Dear Mr. White:
Try as we have over the years, Everglades advocates have been unable to secure a meeting with you to discuss the Mott Foundation’s unique opportunity to assist in restoring and preserving the Everglades – an inestimable national resource that is essential to Florida’s economy, health, and recreational vitality.
The Mott Foundation claims it is committed to preserving freshwater ecosystems as part of its espoused mission “to maintain an ethic of respect, integrity and responsibility,” while recognizing that “each individual’s quality of life is connected to the well-being of the community, both locally and globally.” I couldn’t have said it better myself, especially when considering that the Everglades is one of the world’s largest, most complex freshwater ecosystems – the primary source of drinking water for the nation’s third most populous state and home to more than 70 threatened and endangered species, including the Florida panther. Given the recent crisis with contaminated drinking water in your hometown of Flint, Michigan, surely you understand the importance of protecting water supplies.
Despite the Mott Foundation’s publicly avowed commitment to preserving and protecting freshwater ecosystems, we remain deeply disappointed that U.S. Sugar Corp. – a company that is a major asset and source of income of the Mott Foundation – is a steadfast opponent of science-based public policies to restore the Everglades and is one of the largest sources of pollution to the Everglades. In fact, the company was convicted of knowingly dumping hazardous waste that went into the Everglades.
It is baffling and ironic that the Mott Foundation has demonstrated such a deep commitment to the environment and preserving freshwater ecosystems outside of Florida while controlling a company that is integral to the destruction of one of the most important freshwater ecosystems in the nation.
It is hardly an overstatement, Mr. White, to say that you have an extraordinary opportunity to significantly advance the restoration of the Everglades, given your leadership of both the Mott Foundation and U.S. Sugar Corp.
Restoring America’s Everglades, which means so much to so many, depends upon U.S. Sugar Corp.’s participation as a full and committed partner, as opposed to it remaining a steadfastly uncommunicative, unwavering obstructionist.
We hope you will change your position and meet with me soon. I look forward to hearing from you.
President, Everglades Trust