FCC News Brief - November 14, 2018

Read Water woes impact home sales for October - “The end of Florida's water woes, at least for this year, seem to be finally here. "Glad to be back," Tracy Pascarella said about her return to the beach. Everyone seems to be happier about the water these days. Some realtors are definitely happy to see conditions improve. "Yes, Oh my gosh. First off my eyes and lungs feel better," said Realtor Holly Meyer Lucas with Meyer Lucas Real Estate in Jupiter. Her closings in October were not very good. The East Coast red tide started at the end of September into October. Today Meyer Lucas crunched her numbers for us. "Two-hundred and twenty homes," Holly said of her October condos under contract.  "Averaging about 900 transactions consistently. This year for the month of October we had 220," said Meyer Lucas as she looks over her numbers. She says it was the water issues, whether that's red tide, blue-green algae, or maybe even flooding issues in South Florida…” Alex Hagan reports for WPTV.

Read Court sets hearing in oil drilling dispute - “The 1st District Court of Appeal is scheduled to hear arguments Jan. 8 in a dispute about whether the Florida Department of Environmental Protection should allow a Broward County landowner to drill an exploratory oil well in the Everglades.The court last week agreed to hold oral arguments in an appeal filed by Kanter Real Estate LLC, according to an online docket An administrative law judge recommended in October 2017 that Kanter, a major landowner in western Broward County, should be allowed to drill an exploratory well. But under administrative law, the recommendation went back to the Department of Environmental Protection for final action. Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Noah Valenstein late last year issued a final order denying the drilling permit, saying the lands involved are “in the environmentally sensitive Everglades” and that the department had not issued such an exploratory permit in the Everglades since 1967.Kanter took the dispute to the Tallahassee-based appeals court in December.” The News Service of Florida.

Read St. Johns County’s cattle ranches dwindle as development encroaches - “Allan Roberts remembers the good old days of cattle farming in St. Johns County. Roberts, a 70-year-old with a long history of cattle ranching in St. Johns County, estimates that at peak production in the 1980s, there was at least 15,000 head of cattle in the county. The local Cattlemen’s Association meetings regularly drew 100 members. But like everything else in St. Johns County, times have changed. Now, according to USDA estimates, there are just 1,400 cattle in the county. The Cattlemen’s Association now has just a handful of members. Perhaps the best illustration of the change can be seen in the area of Mill Creek near World Golf Village. Roberts said he once had more than 500 head of cattle roaming on various patches of grassy wide open spaces in the area. These days, in order to get to 40 of the 150 certified Florida Cracker cattle he still has, he has to drive through the Bannon Lakes subdivision. Just three years ago, Roberts had cattle where a Burger King now stands. “I started cutting back a couple years ago when we got the first boom in development,” Roberts said Thursday. “The boom we are in now is really squeezing me out. I don’t own enough of the land to support cattle.” Land in St. Johns County has become so valuable, Roberts said, that many farmers are choosing to sell to developers instead of continuing the costly and time-consuming cattle farming route. The examples can be seen all around the county, most recently along County Road 16...” Travis Gibson reports for the St. Augustine Record.

Read China, after outcry, reinstates ban on rhino and tiger parts in medicine - “ The Chinese government, bowing to pressure from environmental groups, said on Monday that it would temporarily reinstate a ban on the use of rhinoceros horns and tiger bones in medicine. Making a rare concession, the State Council, China’s cabinet, said that it had decided to postpone an order made last month to undo a 25-year ban on the trade. “The Chinese government has not changed its stance on wildlife protection and will not ease the crackdown on illegal trafficking and trade of rhinos, tigers and their byproducts,” Ding Xuedong, a top official with the council, said in remarks published in the state-run news media on Monday. Environmentalists celebrated the change, though some warned that it might be temporary. “Keeping these products banned is the only way we stand a chance of protecting the future survival of these incredible animals that are already in decline,” said Gilbert M. Sape, a campaigner with World Animal Protection, an advocacy group based in London.” Javier C. Hernandez

Read How a project in the Orlando area is making reclaimed water drinkable - “We all know reclaimed water is not drinkable, but one Central Florida city is making it possible through an innovative project that could potentially get results for cities dealing with a water crisis. The city of Altamonte Springs was recently named the best in the world among cities in 45 countries for its PureALTA water treatment project, a technology that could help cities across the nation and globally. "PureALTA is about the future and it's about our kids. We were recognized as the most innovative water project and we beat 45 other countries, including China," City Manager Frank Martz said.  Martz said the project is so unique that people are traveling from other places to learn about it. "There are cities that have traveled here that are saying to us, 'We're gonna have a future water crisis. If there's a way to create new water and reuse the water, we'd like to be a part of that,'" Martz said…” Carolina Cardona reports for Click Orlando.


From Our Readers

The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

 

Job Openings:

Executive Director - Friends of Gumbo Limbo

Retail Manager- Friends of Gumbo Limbo

Organizing Representative for Sierra Club Florida’s Clean Energy for All Campaign

Upcoming Environmental Events:

November 14 - 5:30pm-7:30pm - Walton Solar Co-Op Information Sessions (Santa Rosa Beach) - Join Earth Ethics, Inc to learn more about how you can go solar! Meeting at the Coastal Branch Library, 437 Greenway Trail, Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459. Learn more here , or contact Mary Gutierrez at earthethicsaction@gmail.com

November 14 - 12:45pm-2:45pm - Villages Environmental Discussions Group (The Villages) - Villages Environmental Discussions Group will hold its next meeting Wednesday, Nov. 14. at the Belvedere Library, 325 Belvedere Blvd., The Villages, FL. Two fabulous guest speakers will be visiting us: Melissa Hill of Alachua Conservation Trust (ACT) will describe the work of this organization who recently celebrated its 30th Anniversary! Melissa will also describe the work she performs as project coordinator of Nesting Sea Turtle Conservancy. Our next speaker will travel to The Villages from St. Augustine, FL. Maia McGuire, Ph.D., UF/IFAS Sea Grant Extension Agent, will give an update on the Florida Microplastic Awareness Project. This program is FREE and open to the public.  Bring along a friend. Please send an r.s.v.p. to  resourcewisdom@gmail.com.

November 17 - 9:00am-4:00pm - Highlands County Master Gardeners Festival (Sebring) - Join the Highlands County Master Gardeners for the inaugural Garden Festival. Kicked off at 9:00am by Shannon Reed singing the National Anthem, there will be live music, vendors, food, a kids zone, and plant classes. Where: Bert J Harris Agricultural Civic Center in Sebring: 4509 George Blvd.

November 17, 9:00am-11:00am - National Take a Hike Day (Naples) - Join Conservation Collier to celebrate National Take a Hike Day at either Gordon River Greenway (1596 Golden Gate Parkway, Naples FL) or the Nancy Payton Preserve (1540 Blue Sage Drive, Naples FL). Meet at the Parking Area/Trailhead. Pre-registration required. Call 239-252-2961 or email at conservationcollier@colliercountyfl.gov .

November 27 from 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. – FREE WORKSHOP -- Palm Beach County 2070:  What’s Next?  (Palm Beach Gardens) - Join 1000 Friends of Florida and the North County Neighborhood Coalition on Tuesday, November 27 to identify the steps needed now to promote a more sustainable future for Palm Beach County. We want to hear from you about what you think the biggest obstacles are to sustainability and what needs to be done, both short- and long-term, to overcome them.   The workshop is at Nova’s Palm Beach Campus, 11501 North Military Trail, Palm Beach Gardens.  This event is free, no registration is required, and light refreshments will be served.  Visit  www.1000friendsofflorida.org/pbco2070plan to find out more.

November 28 from 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. – FREE WORKSHOP – Martin County 2070:  What’s Next? (Stuart) - Join 1000 Friends and The Guardians of Martin County on Wednesday, November 28 to share your thoughts on steps needed now to promote a more sustainable future for Martin County. We want to hear from you about what you think are the biggest obstacles to sustainability in Martin County and what needs to be done, both short- and long-term, to overcome them.  The workshop is at the Susan H. Johnson Auditorium, Wolf High-Technology Center, 2400 SE Salerno Road, Stuart.  This event is free, no registration is required, and light refreshments will be served.  Visit www.1000friendsofflorida.org/mco2070plan to find out more.

December 1, 9:00am-4:00pm - 2018 Florida Solar Congress (Miami) - The 2018 Florida Solar Congress is a free public conference. It brings together solar supporters from across the state to learn and discuss the current solar landscape and future for solar energy in Florida. The day will include a series of presentations about solar technology and policy, as well as ways to get involved with helping to grow solar in Florida. Topics will include: solar 101, solar + battery storage for homes, grassroots solar advocacy, electric vehicles, ways to get involved, and much more! The event will conclude with a participatory open forum discussion for all attendees to discuss priorities and opportunities that solar supporters in Florida should focus on in the coming year. Breakfast and lunch will be provided for all attendees! RSVP here. Interested in volunteering at this event? Email Heaven Campbell at heaven@flsun.org.

December 1, 12:00pm-4:00pm - NFLT J.J. Grey Concert- (Jacksonville) - The North Florida Land Trust presents Jacksonville-hailing J.J. Grey, singer and songwriter described by his fans as ‘the North Florida sage and soul-bent swamp rocker’ who has gained worldwide acclaim with his band, JJ Grey and Mofro. This December’s concert brings Grey back home to his beloved roots and will feature JJ Grey in a solo performance. Grey shares a commitment to the land of his north Florida home that fits perfectly with North Florida Land Trust’s mission to protect special places in the region. Grey often sings about the changing landscape in northern Florida and his soulfulness and deep beliefs come through in his music. The concert will be held at Congaree and Penn Farm & Mills: 11830 Old Kings Road, Jacksonville, FL 32219. For more information and tickets, visit the NFLT site here.

December 6, 12:00pm-1:30pm - Free Recycle Right to Meet Industry Challenges Webinar - Florida has made great strides in increasing its recycling rates but shrinking global markets for recycling materials and increased “contamination” or non-recyclables in the stream are presenting daunting challenges for the industry.  Join Karen Moore, Recycling Manager for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection; Dawn McCormick, Chair of the Florida Recycling Partnership and Waste Management Director of Communications; and a County Recycling Manager as they discuss these challenges and cost implications for Florida’s counties, cities and businesses.  This event has been approved for 1.5 AICP CM for planners (#9162164) and .15 CEUs for Florida Environmental Health Professionals. 1000 Friends has applied for professional certification credits for Certified Floodplain Managers, Florida attorneys, and Florida DBPR Landscape Architecture but cannot guarantee credits will be approved.  Register at www.1000friendsofflorida.org/webinar/.

January 22, 2019 - 12:00pm-1:30pm - Free 2019 Florida Legislative Preview Webinar - The 60-day 2019 Florida Legislative Session starts on March 5 and is scheduled to end on May 3 of 2019.  The actions taken during the session likely will have significant public policy impacts for planning, conservation, transportation, community design and other issues of concern to many Floridians with myriad impacts for concerned citizens, professionals, local elected officials and others.  1000 Friends President Paul Owens, Policy and Planning Director Thomas Hawkins, and Board Member Emeritus and Past Chairman Lester Abberger will discuss key growth management, design, conservation and related bills including budget recommendations that may be up for consideration during the 2019 Florida Legislative Session and will discuss how this could impact state and local governance and planning in Florida. This event has been approved for 1.5 AICP CM LEGAL CREDITS for planners (#9162191) and .15 CEUs for Florida Environmental Health Professionals. 1000 Friends has applied for professional certification credits for Certified Floodplain Managers, Florida attorneys, and Florida DBPR Landscape Architecture but cannot guarantee credits will be approved.  Register at www.1000friendsofflorida.org/webinar/.

March 27, 2019 - 12:00pm-1:30pm - Free 2019 Florida Legislative Update Webinar - This free webinar is scheduled for a little more than three weeks into the 2019 Florida Legislative Session. The actions taken during the session likely will have significant public policy impacts for planning, conservation, transportation, community design and other issues of concern to many Floridians with myriad impacts for concerned citizens, professionals, local elected officials and others. 1000 Friends President Paul Owens, Policy and Planning Director Thomas Hawkins, and Board Member Emeritus and Past Chairman Lester Abberger will discuss key growth management, design, conservation and related bills including budget recommendations that are being considered during the 2019 Florida Legislative Session and other legislation that may surface as the session progresses. This event has been approved for 1.5 AICP CM LEGAL CREDITS for planners (#9162194). 1000 Friends has applied for professional certification credits for Certified Floodplain Managers, Florida attorneys, Florida Environmental Health Professionals, and Florida DBPR Landscape Architecture but cannot guarantee credits will be approved. Register at www.1000friendsofflorida.org/webinar/.

Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

Petitions

End collection & removal of tropical marine life from Phil Foster Park

Stop the spraying of glyphosate herbicide in Florida waters

Stop Development on Fish Island along the Matanzas River

Thinking of going electric? Nextcar Pledge

Another Gulf is Possible

Save the Serenova Tract in Pasco – Say NO to the Ridge Road Extension

Florida Solar Bill of Rights

Protect Florida’s Gulf Coast from Offshore Drilling

Protect Weeki Wachee Springs; Stop the 7 Diamonds Mine in Pasco County

Tell Congress to Stop Sabal Trail

Stop New Phosphate Strip Mining in Florida

We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest and most relevant environmental news for Floridians. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

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About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 80 conservation-minded organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.  

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