New leadership brings new outlook. Refreshing.

A new breed of men and women have been appointed to the Governing Board of the most powerful agency in South Florida, comprising 16 counties – the South Florida Water Management District.

For the first time in the history of the agency, not one of the board members has ties to agriculture or big users of the public’s water. Each of them has a background that includes the environment. Thinkers and doers, they did not accept this assignment to be wallflowers or part of the “go along to get along” crowd.

The Board, along with agency leadership from Drew Bartlett, has the mandate to make generational changes to systems – environmental and political – that have been decimated over the past 30 years. They’ve been empowered by Governor DeSantis and the public to do it.

None of them is guaranteed anything. None have skin in the game financially. Each of them is accomplished in their own right but have agreed to stand up and usher in the change that is so desperately needed.

The Trust applauds each of them. We are grateful for their service, time out of their busy lives and away from their families, to do what no others have been willing to do before.

We will continue to work with them to ensure the big things are addressed and that the footdraggers and naysayers don’t swallow the conversation or get the Board off topic.

Stick with us!

Kimberly Mitchell
Executive Director 

A new breed of men and women who have been appointed to the board of the SFWMD, along with agency leadership from Drew Bartlett, have the mandate to make generational changes to systems – environmental and political – that have been decimated over the past 30 years. They’ve been empowered by the Governor and the public to do it.

SUN SENTINEL: Climate change denial ends at agency that protects waters in South Florida

The sugar industry has contributed to the demise of the Everglades for decades, using the ecosystem as a giant septic tank and blocking the natural flow of water from Lake O. To save them, and all the critters who call them home, we must reestablish the southern flow and get clean freshwater sent to the right place at the right time.

NATGEO: Meet the residents of the Everglades 

This is is reminiscent of Big Sugar’s ruse and push for Deep Injection Wells – shooting trillions of gallons of polluted agricultural runoff 3,000 feet down into the boulder zone, then out to the Gulf and Atlantic.

“This is no different than a get-rich-quick scheme. Let’s fix the problem of excess nutrients at the sources, not by flushing them temporarily.”

FLORIDA TODAY: An artificial inlet for the Indian River Lagoon is irresponsible | Opinion

“We shouldn’t think of that as a new normal, another reality of living in Florida that we can’t do anything about. We can and we should.

Gov. Ron DeSantis took a good first step by creating the Blue-Green Algae Task Force. But it can’t be window dressing. The task force needs to come up with practical solutions.”

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Algae blooms. Iguanas headed north. That’s climate change. | Editorial

“Best Management Practices” for agriculture are a joke (and voluntary). Failing municipal sewer systems are rampant statewide. Biosolids (human waste) from one part of the state are spread onto farmland in other parts of the state – adjacent to waterways.

The Governor is doing his job. Time for local governments and the Legislature to do theirs.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Four Florida beaches post health warnings for water quality 

Florida is defined by water. The abundance and diversity of coastal estuary habitat is what earned Florida its title as the sportfishing capital of the world.

Killer algae, too much water, not enough water – this hydrological disaster is killing Florida’s legendary inshore fishing. And much more.

OUTDOOR LIFE: Florida's Water Crisis Has Sport Fishing on the Brink of Collapse

“Natural-history filmmaker Richard Kern uses his work to educate people.

“For me, the greatest satisfaction I get is being able to see the effects on the faces of middle school kids in an auditorium. To show them how exceptional a place like the Everglades actually are.”

SUN SENTINEL: South Florida creatives showcase Everglades as a local treasure

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