Nathaniel Pryor Reed- 1933-2018
It is with tremendous sadness that we share the news that Nathaniel Pryor Reed passed away earlier today as a result of a fishing accident last week. He left an incredible and lasting legacy - in Florida, across the nation, and internationally - and each of us has benefited from his life-long passion for and commitment to protecting our fragile natural lands and waters.
His passion for nature was set when, as a child wintering with his family in Hobe Sound, he waded "every inch of the Indian River." He was larger than life, with a booming voice, brilliant mind, and unbridled enthusiasm for all things environmental. A true visionary, he realized sooner than most why conservation was so important and what was needed to achieve it. He also could be blunt with those who did not move with sufficient alacrity to resolve problems, be they large or small.
When serving as Assistant Secretary of the Interior under President Nixon and President Ford he helped draft and secure passage of major legislation including the 1972 Clean Water Act and 1973 Endangered Species Act and successfully pushed for banning DDT. While holding federal office he still maintained his commitment to his beloved Florida, among other things securing protection and federal funding for the Big Cypress National Preserve.
His public service in Florida is legendary, as was his devotion to the Everglades, clean air and water, wildlife, fishing, and managing Florida's booming growth. A respected adviser to Governors from both parties, he played an instrumental role in envisioning and advocating for some of the state's most respected conservation initiatives.
He served on boards and committees too many to number, and his leadership produced results. He was appointed to the South Florida Water Management District Board by Governor Bob Graham and then subsequent governors, serving for 14 years. He used this platform to continue his career-long push for a plan and state and federal funding for Everglades restoration. Governor Bob Martinez appointed him to chair the Commission on the Future of Florida's Environment which called for bonding to acquire environmentally sensitive lands, leading to Florida's landmark program which has resulted in millions of acres of conserved lands.
In addition to playing a key role in the passage of Florida's 1985 Growth Management Act he also co-founded 1000 Friends of Florida and remained an actively involved guiding force as Chairman Emeritus up until the day of his accident. Most recently, he asked 1000 Friends to edit and publish a white paper he had spearheaded on the most critical environmental issues facing Florida. That paper will come out in August.
He was a one-of-a-kind, passionate and enthusiastic advocate for Florida's environment. He leaves a tremendous legacy. We all will miss him and extend our sincere sympathy to his wife, Alita, children Nathaniel Jr., Adrian and Lia, and five grandchildren.
-1000 Friends of Florida
Craig Pittman writes for the Tampa Bay Times - “In a long career spent both in and out of government service, Mr. Reed co-wrote the Endangered Species Act, helped stop the construction of the world’s largest airport in the Big Cypress Swamp, and later founded the group 1,000 Friends of Florida...Mr. Reed stood 6 feet 5, and his beak-like nose and slender build made him resemble a wading bird in repose. In defending the environment, though, he could roar like a lion. While he was a staunch Republican long before that was a popular affiliation in Florida, he had also been radicalized by Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring….” Read Nathaniel Reed, Florida environmental advocate and co-author of the Endangered Species Act, dies at 84.
Melissa Bill reports for LeHigh Acres Citizen - “Residents and businesses owners voiced their views, protesting the proposed rezoning of the 1,790-acre Troyer Brothers property on SR82 for limerock mining...Prior to public comment, hearing examiners heard from a list of environmental witnesses who spoke against the rezoning of the land, claiming that it would impact sensitive wildlife habitat. Among the groups were the Sierra Club, National Audubon Society and Conservancy of Southwest Florida…” Read Residents, businesses speak out against rezoning.
Jeryl Olson, Patrick Smith, and Craig Simonsen for Lexology - “ The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) current regulations implementing Clean Water Act (CWA) section 404(c) allow the Agency to veto at any time during the permitting process a permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) under CWA section 404(a) that allows for the discharge of dredged or fill material at permitted sites…” Read USEPA Administrator Pruitt issues memo to update agency use of Clean Water Act Section 404(c) veto power.
Ali Schmitz writes for the TCPalm - “ The White House Office of Management and Budget has approved the EAA Reservoir Project, Gov. Rick Scott announced in a tweet Tuesday. The plan now gets sent back to the Corps, which will then submit it to Congress for authorization….The South Florida Water Management District claims the project's 10,100-acre reservoir and 6,500-acre man-made marsh will be able to reduce discharges to both rivers by 63 percent and send more than 120 billion gallons of clean water south to the Everglades each year…” Read Lake Okeechobee reservoir project gets thumbs-up from White House budget office.
Ocala Star Banner Staff report - “The St. Johns River Water Management District’s board has agreed to pay $907,000 for a 240-acre parcel in Southeast Marion County. Purchase of the land, which is south of County Road 42 near the Lake County line, allows the district to ‘protect water resources by eliminating an outparcel near the center’ of its Sunnyhill Restoration Area, according to a district news release…” Read Water management district buys conservation land.
Craig Pittman writes for Tampa Bay Times - “ A federal judge’s ruling has cleared the way for reviving construction of the controversial Suncoast 2 toll road in Citrus County, even though the road that would connect it to Interstate 75 has been put on the back burner. Work on the road had been halted last month because of a temporary injunction from a federal judge. Thanks to the new court ruling, a spokeswoman for a consultant working on the road for the Florida Department of Transportation said Tuesday that construction on the Suncoast 2 ‘will resume by the end of the week.’ The plaintiffs in the case say that this means nothing stands in the way of the DOT destroying the Etna Turpentine Camp, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places…” Read Judge allows Suncoast 2 construction to proceed, paving over historic site.
Rachel Ravina writes for Wink News - “Sanibel mayor Kevin Ruane asked his constituents to contact elected representatives to take action on the algae plaguing Southwest Florida waterways, according to a letter. Ruane requested such urgency due to the potential health and safety ramifications associated with the issue. Read SWFL feeling effects of blue-green algae; similar to east coast 2016 issue.
From Florida Spring Life - “Facebook’s most popular Florida Springs Group, Springs Hunters conducted a poll from their group in 2017 and came back with comprehensive results. They took 29 activities and asked their 20,000+ group members what they thought. We took their results, brainstormed a little, added some code…” See Florida Springs Rankings.
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