MIAMI NEW TIMES: Environmental Group Blames Big Sugar for Dangerous Everglades Flooding

Miami New Times: Written by Jerry Ianneli. July 10, 2017.

Florida's rainy season began so slowly this year that farmers worried they would spend the summer under drought conditions. But then, in late June, a month's worth of rain suddenly poured on Florida in just one week. The deluge swelled the artificially managed water levels in the Everglades, flooding the habitats of deer, endangered birds, and other critical animals and plants.

The flooding grew so severe that the South Florida Water Management District was forced to pump more than nine billion gallons of water, enough to fill 14,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools, into Lake Okeechobee. Commissioner Ron Bergeron of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission even took local reporters wading through the Glades to illustrate how bad things had become.

But now one environmental group says the devastating floods are not simply an act of God: The real culprit, they say, is Big Sugar, which reroutes massive overflows to prevent its cane fields from going underwater.

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