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.
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.
Watch now: 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.”
“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.”
“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.
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.
“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.”
A simmering brew, almost exclusively of agricultural runoff, is pushing against the doorstep of millions of Floridians, as it is blocked by Big Sugar from moving south safely. All we can do is push to get these projects built faster.
We do not know how the Fanjuls of Florida Crystals and the heirs to the CSMott fortune of US Sugar sleep at night.
Kerry Kates, with the Florida Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association, said farmers are willing to participate in the clean-up process. "Agriculture is a part of the problem. Agriculture will also be a part of the solution."
Now, this is refreshing.
Environmental officials found cyanobacteria, a blue-green algae bloom, on Lake Okeechobee that is three times the toxic level. A recent test of the waters shows 29 microcystis per liter of water. This is a stark increase from eight microcystis, which is the beginning of toxicity, according to the EPA.
Continue reading: CBS12.COM: Lake Okeechobee blue-green algae bloom three times too toxic