Scott Maxwell writes for the Orlando Sentinel - “ Imagine for a moment that you see a guy slowly reaching toward a scalding hot stove. Everyone around screams: ‘Don’t touch it! You’ll hurt yourself!’ But the guy pays them no mind and places his palm flush upon the bright orange burner, only to scream in surprise and agony as his flesh begins to char...we are this man. This entire state. For the past eight years, we stood by as the state decimated its environmental and water-protection agencies and repealed checks on sustainable growth. Every step, we were warned: ‘Don’t do it! Things will go bad!’ But we paid them no mind. We watched as politicians shut down water-quality monitoring stations, stocked environmental boards with developers, slashed staff at the agencies that check for pollution and cut back on land-preservation programs. Then we re-elected them…” Read Florida’s great green algae disaster - we asked for it...us and Rick Scott.
Donna Sutton writes for the News-Press - “The proposed Troyer Bros. mine is proceeding through Lee County’s rezoning process. The applicant requests rezoning from agriculture to industrial. This land is located contiguous to Lee County’s Imperial Marsh and Conservation 20/20’s Imperial Marsh Preserve Galloway Tract. Both tracts are a valuable and environmentally sensitive mosaic of cypress swamps, pine flatwoods, oak hammock, freshwater marsh, and pasture lands that serve as important habitat for a variety of birds, mammals, especially Florida panthers, reptiles and amphibians. Most importantly, they are a key component of the conservation lands that help preserve our vital groundwater resources…” Read Proposed mine in Lee County a serious threat to environment.
Timothy Haab writes for Treasure Coast Newspapers - “Millions of Americans head outdoors in the summer, whether for a day at a nearby lake or a month-long road trip. For environmental economists like me, decisions by vacationers and outdoor recreators offer clues to a challenging puzzle: estimating what environmental resources are worth...Cost-benefit analysis has been so successful as a tool for policy analysis that every administration since Reagan has endorsed using it. However, it requires measuring benefits that are not ‘priced’ in typical markets. Fortunately, putting a price on non-market environmental outcomes, such as safer drinking water and fewer deaths from exposure to dirty air, has proved to be possible, and highly valuable. These estimates help to make the case for actions such as cleaning up beaches and protecting scenic areas as parks. According to a preliminary estimate from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, outdoor recreation adds $373 billion to the U.S. economy yearly. That’s 2 percent of our annual gross domestic product-more than agriculture, mining or utilities, and approaching the economic contribution of national defense...” Read What’s the value of a clean beach? Here’s how economists do the numbers.
Craig Pittman reports for Tampa Bay Times - “Mosaic Co., the world’s largest phosphate company, has spent two decades lining up a new mine in DeSoto County as part of a broader effort to move its operations south. But DeSoto County commissioners last week slammed the door in the company’s face, voting 4-1 against rezoning 18,000 acres from agricultural to mining. The commissioners voted down Mosaic’s zoning request Wednesday night after two days of impassioned testimony from hundreds of people opposed to the mine. The rejection- after their own planning director recommended approval - came as a surprise to many…” Read Mosaic spent 20 years planning new phosphate mine. DeSoto County has rejected it.
Rebecca Renner reports for SIERRA - “Reinaldo Diaz begins his search early, before the South Florida heat takes over the day. Diaz, the Lake Worth Waterkeeper, follows the path of the canals in his old VW Rabbit east toward the Lake Worth Lagoon. He’s looking for algal blooms. The worst blooms float on top of the water like a bright green carpet. More often, Diaz can only see the colonies of algae suspended in the water column. Algal blooms have increasingly threatened much of South Florida. As recently as early July, a putrid mat of toxic algae covered up to 90 percent of Lake Okeechobee’s 730-square miles. In response, Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency to address blooms he blamed on water discharges controlled by the Army Corps of Engineers. He called on the Army Corps to discharge contaminated water from locks down the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee rivers. But this ‘solution’ doesn’t solve the problem. It just relocates it…” Read Waterkeepers fight to save Florida from toxic algae.
From Our Readers
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Upcoming Environmental Events
Tidal Town Hall: Attend a Tidal Town Hall near you. These events represent a partnership between ReThink Energy Florida and First Street Foundation in an effort to provide voters with the opportunity to have an open conversation with Primary Candidates on the topic of sea level rise. Attending candidates are from both sides of the aisle and this is your chance to ask them how they plan on protecting the Sunshine State from climate change driven sea level rise:
July 30, 5:30-8:30 pm - Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association, 619 Vonderburg, DR #B, Brandon, FL. Facebook event here.
July 31, 5:30-8:30 pm - 635 Prosperity Farm Road, North Palm Beach, FL. Facebook event here.
July 31, 6:00- 8:30 pm- 2401 N Harbor City Blvd, Melbourne, FL 32935. Facebook event here.
August 1, 5:30 - 8:30 pm - 1951 NW 7th Ave Suite 600, Miami, FL 33136. Facebook event here.
August 6, 5:30-8:30 pm - 330 5th St. N, St. Petersburg, FL 33701. Facebook event here.
August 6, 5:30 - 8:00 pm - 12000 Alumni Dr, Jacksonville, FL 32224. Facebook event here.
August 7, 5:30- 8:30 pm - En Espanol - 1951 NW 7th Ave Suite 600, Miami, FL 33136. Facebook event here.
August 8, 5:30-8:30 pm- 3975 Fruitville Rd., Sarasota FL 34232. Facebook event here.
August 9, 5:30- 8:30 pm- 1000 Holt Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789. Facebook event here.
August 14, 5:00-7:00 pm - 6340 Napa Woods Way, Naples, FL 34116. Facebook event here.
August 14, 5:00 - 7:45 pm - 239 N Spring Street, Pensacola, FL. Facebook event here.
August 15, 5:00 - 7:00 pm - 2000 North Recreation Park Way, North Fort Myers, FL. Facebook event here.
August 1, 6:00 - 7:30 pm - Low-Impact Development Workshop. Join local experts in the discussion about how Low-Impact Development (LID) practices keep stormwater on site, can remove pollutants, prevent flooding, and benefit wildlife. Elected officials, residents, builders ,city planners, and concerned citizens are encouraged to attend. Lyonia Environmental Center - 2150 Eustace Avenue, Deltona, FL. For more information visit www.greenvolusia.org or call 386-736-5927.
August 4, 11:00 am- 1:00 pm - St. Augustine March Against Fracking: This is a family-friendly event, sponsored by multiple environmental and political organizations in Northeast Florida. Guest speakers will include Jen Lomberk (Matanzas Riverkeeper), Dr. Gary Bowers (Physician), V Miller (Campaign Director at Rethink Energy FL), and more! Nancy Shaver (Mayor of St. Augustine) will also be making an appearance. Parking is available on Anastasia Island. We will be gathering at the park on the east side of the Bridge of Lions. Marching will begin promptly at 11:30AM. For more information email Nick at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
August 7th, 12:00 pm - Springs Academy: Class 5 Springs Stresses. This Springs Academy class will be taught by Dr. Bob Knight, Executive Director of the Florida Springs Institute. Dr. Knight will be presenting an in-depth overview of Springs Stresses including groundwater pumping, fertilizers, wastewater disposal, and recreation. Held at the North Florida Environmental Center in High Springs, Florida. For more information email email@example.com or visit the website.
August 9, 6:00 - 8:45 pm - Big Bend Environmental Forum for Candidates of Primary Election- Citizens will be able to suggest questions covering environmental, energy, sustainability, and growth management issues to candidates of the county and city commissions for the Big Bend area. An open house prior to the forum will include displays by candidates and BBEF member organizations. King Life Sciences Building Auditorium, Room 1024, 319 Stadium Dr, Tallahassee FL. Facebook event here.
August 13-16 - Registration is now open for Florida Springs Institute Field School. The Springs Field School will take place in Silver Springs, Florida, and includes four days of lectures and field trips on springs biology, geology, chemistry, environmental laws and advocacy from leading experts. For info and registration, click
August 17, 4:30 pm- 6:30 pm (CST) - Apalachicola Riverkeeper Meet & Greet: Learn more about Apalachicola Riverkeeper’s current and upcoming projects, including this year’s RiverTrek launch. Enjoy Wine & Beer, Tea & Soda along with light snacks. There will be door prizes! Event will be at the W.T. Neal Civic Center in Blountstown.
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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.
For more information, visit https://www.wearefcc.org/