Add the Florida Fertilizer and Agrichemical Association to the growing list of groups attacking the EPA’s implementation of a strict set of standards that would govern pollution in Florida waterways.
During the association’s winter meeting in St. Petersburg this week, President Mary Hartney expressed interest in filing suit against the EPA over the nutrient standards: ”For us, it’s all about water quality. … We have a recommendation coming forward to our Board of Directors today to join in to the lawsuit against EPA on its’ implementation of numeric nutrient criteria in Florida. So it’s water, water, water.”
Saying that the issue was “absolutely” one that crosses the board, Hartney said that her group was grateful to the state of Florida, Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam and Attorney General Pam Bondi for acting as “leaders in the effort” to fight water quality rules. Putnam and Bondi took part in filing suit over the standards in early December.
Others filing similar suits include city municipalities and utility companies, all of which argue they would be hit with high costs in adhering to guidelines that are much stricter than the current rules — but, many would argue, much more effective.
“I wish it was over with today,” said Hartney, when asked about her ideal timeline in filing suit against the EPA. “It was an activist lawsuit that got us into this mess, unfortunately. It’s a lawsuit that’ll, hopefully, get us out of it.”
Hartney also mentioned that her group was supportive of a bill concerning numeric nutrient criteria, currently being written by state Rep. Trudi Williams, R-Fort Myers.
Listen to the full interview with Hartney here: