According to a recently released study by the Everglades Foundation, the agriculture industry is responsible for 76 percent of the phosphorus pollution entering the Everglades. But despite passage of a “Polluter Pays” amendment to the state Constitution in 1996, the ag industry isn’t paying for even half of the cost of phosphorus removal, leaving the balance of the burden on the shoulders of taxpayers.
Posts Tagged St. Johns River
A week ago, the St. Johns River Water Management district released the results of a four-year study on the potential impacts of water withdrawals on the state’s largest river. Environmentalists are applauding the district for undertaking the project, but argue that many questions and legitimate concerns about the impact of water withdrawal on the St. Johns remain.
Earlier this month, a representative for the St. Johns River Water Management District gave a presentation to the Jacksonville Waterways Commission on a study analyzing water withdrawals from the river. The study, which will next be presented to the city’s Environmental Protection Board, aims to demonstrate how potential water withdrawals could impact Jacksonville. One environmental group worries that the study doesn’t fully address all of the problems.
Environmentalists and researchers have long felt fear when confronted with a proposed pipeline that will carry waste away from a Palatka paper mill and into the St. Johns River. For at least one scientist, it’s a fear of the unknown.
Yesterday, a coalition of environmental groups announced their decision to file a petition against the state Department of Environmental Protection’s “numeric nutrient criteria,” a set of water pollution standards they argue are not strong enough to fully protect Florida’s waterways. The Florida Independent spoke with both the St. Johns Riverkeeper, one of the plaintiffs in the suit, and Earthjustice attorney David Guest, who is representing the plaintiffs, to discuss the potential effects of the petition.
In an op-ed published in today’s Florida Times-Union, St. Johns Riverkeeper Neil Armingeon writes that Floridians “deserve answers” about a nearly four-mile pipeline that would carry waste from a Palatka paper mill owned by Koch Industries subsidiary Georgia-Pacific into the St. Johns River.
During a Jacksonville city council meeting Monday, state Rep. Lake Ray, R-Jacksonville, spoke out against a resolution that would delay the construction of a four-mile waste pipeline from Georgia-Pacific’s Palatka mill to the St. Johns River. Ray, who also acts as the executive director of a business association that represents Georgia-Pacific, said a decision to delay the pipeline could be detrimental to securing Gov. Rick Scott’s help with other Jacksonville needs.
At a press conference held today in downtown Jacksonville, leaders from the St. Johns Riverkeeper and the Jacksonville City Council again touted their firm stance against the construction of Georgia-Pacific’s hotly contested pipeline, which would reroute waste from the company’s Palatka plant directly into the St. Johns River.
An all-day public workshop on Florida’s hotly contested water pollution standards held Tuesday brought up several concerns about the efficacy, and accuracy, of the state’s proposed rule.
While intense community organizing and outreach effectively curbed the ability of private entities to withdraw water from the Wacissa River, a state bill filed last month would move to further protect an already strained Florida aquifer from corporate interests.