St. Johns Riverkeeper Provides Recent Articles about Florida's Waters
Evangelicals in Florida turn to climate change and call on Gov. Scott to act, Tampa Bay Times 5.20.14
“We are failing to keep our air and water clean for our children, contributing to a changing climate that most hurts the world's poor, and putting Floridians at risk as temperatures and sea levels continue to rise. To meet these challenges, we need leaders who understand our duty to God’s creation and future generations. That's why we are calling on Gov. Rick Scott to create a plan to reduce carbon pollution and confront the impacts of a changing climate.”
Are we drinking drugs? Florida Today 5.14.14
“Drugs with various purposes and names such as Prozac, Paxil, Lipitor or Zoloft, to name only some, can proceed virtually unhampered from humans into their water supplies and the animals that inhabit them. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1,800 drugs are available to consumers, each of them potentially a pollutant…Those include not only pharmaceuticals, but personal care products and ‘endocrine disruptors’ such as ‘synthetic estrogen, PCBs, dioxin and some pesticides that may interfere with or modify hormone processes within an organism.’”
Littlepage: Don't take the Corps view on dredging as gospel, Florida Times-Union 5.13.14
"Science is not perfect,” Taylor said. “Models are not perfect.” In other words, it’s an almost $700 million roll of the dice on creating more jobs and on the health of the St. Johns. This project indeed deserves robust questioning.
Tom Swihart: The political climate, Watery Foundation 5.11.14
You may have heard that U.S. Senator Marco Rubio opined on ABC that scientists were wrong about the pace and importance of climate change. And, even if it were happening, it would cost too much to fix. In addition to taking a more sustained look at the new National Climate Assessment, I hope he will review the first page of the May 2009 economic analysis from the Florida Energy and Climate Action Team:
The results indicate that the majority of the recommended greenhouse gas mitigation and sequestration policies individually have positive impacts on the State’s economy. When combined, the Action Plan recommendations would, on a net present value basis, increase Gross State Product by about $37.9 billion and increase employment by 148 thousand full time equivalent jobs by the Year 2025.
Try explaining inaction on springs to our young people, Ocala Star-Banner 5.11.14
"'What!?' his cheeks turning bright pink now, 'They wanted to wait another year to bring up water for action?'
No amount of thoughtful clarification was going to help James understand the theory of politics. I’m not certified to teach that, anyway....Sometimes, all I can say to the students is, let’s not talk anymore about the springs right now and return to quantum mechanics and molecular bonding. Something less complicated than saving the springs, if you don’t mind."
Hope for springs dies, Herald Tribune 5.11.14
"None was bigger than House Speaker Will Weatherford, who stated flat out he did not want to deal with water policy this year. Wait till next year, he said. Why? With big businesses' big donors working behind the scenes -- it is an election year, after all -- the bill began being watered down."
"I still don’t believe climate change is real, and you shouldn’t, either. Don’t be impressed just because 240 “experts” contributed to this melodramatic report. The tea party has experts, too, and they assure me it’s all hogwash."
Inexcusable delay on springs, The Daytona Beach News-Journal 5.10.14
"For decades, Florida’s unofficial policy toward its troubled springs has embodied one word: Wait.
Wait — for the state to start measuring the levels of pollution and unhealthy nutrients in the once-pure spring flows.
Wait — for environmental officials to set minimum flow rates for springs, and craft rules to restore the most troubled. Wait — for state and local leaders to establish common-sense protections that acknowledge springs’ crucial role in Florida’s overall hydrological welfare."
Littlepage: More action, less talk needed on water conservation, Florida Times-Union 5.9.14
"In 2009, the St. Johns River Water Management District was developing rules that would have put teeth into the talk about water conservation...All were good rules that Gov. Rick Scott assigned to the trash bin when he took office. If DEP wants to show it’s serious about conservation to help restore the health of our rivers and springs, it will restore those rules."
Killer in the water?, The Florida Keys and Key West Daily Online News 4.23.14
“But an emerging body of science has also raised the specter that eating seafood from bloom-stricken waters increases one's chances of contracting ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, as well as other neurological disorders.”
Tapped Out, Folio Weekly 5.8.14
“There’s all these ways for us to live within our water means,” Rinaman adds. “We’re not getting serious about doing so. Until our elected officials start focusing on aggressive conservation, it’s going to force these extremely expensive infrastructure projects that are going to damage our rivers and springs.”
Accusing the port of public records violation, environmental group files suit, Jacksonville Business Journal 5.7.14
Without the information, there's no way to know if the job estimates are correct, said Andrew Miller, executive director of the Public Trust. Martin Associate reports on other port projects have been castigated for overly rosy employment projects. "If we're going to spend $733 million, we need to know the assumptions, calculations and facts are correct," Miller said.
Editorial: Pollution sources, Ocala Star-Banner 5.7.14
"Essentially, the study found that — as many have long suspected — septic tanks are the leading cause of nutrient pollution, contributing 40 percent of the nitrate pollution...The next biggest polluters of the springs are the county's horse farms, according to the study, which found them to be responsible for 14 percent of the tainting of the springs water. Agriculture fertilizer, 7 percent, and cattle farms, 4 percent, also were measured in the analysis."
Lee Thomas: Florida already feeling effects of climate change, Tampa Bay Times 5.6.14
"Climate change is one of the greatest risks facing our society, and Florida is already feeling its effects. It's time to follow the facts and take a sensible approach to address this urgent problem."
Lee Thomas served as Environmental Protection Agency administrator under President Ronald Reagan from 1985-89. He recently retired as CEO of Rayonier Corp.
Florida squarely in the cross-hairs of climate change, new report says, Tampa Bay Times 5.6.14
"Given Florida's porous limestone geology, a rising sea spells bad news for the drinking supply. Salty water pushing inland will invade the aquifer, tainting it and forcing local and state officials to find other, more expensive sources, the report says...However, Gov. Rick Scott has said he does not believe climate change is real. As a result, the state Department of Environmental Protection has no specific programs aimed at dealing with climate change."
Editorial: Springs failure, Gainesville Sun 5.5.14
"Environmental advocates should temper their disappointment. The Senate bill was a shell of the original proposal, which would have created protection zones around the state's most significant springs and dedicated about $365 million a year from an existing real-estate tax to projects to cut pollution in those areas. The measure was gutted as the session progressed. Regulatory measures were delayed years or even decades. The recurring funding was removed, replaced with one-time money that was whittled down to $30 million."
Estus Whitfield: How a good springs bill died, Tampa Bay Times 5.5.14
"So, despite a group of courageous senators, our springs and water resources continue to decline, while the House and governor and a handful of lobbyists breathe a sigh of relief. Everyone else — those who care for our natural treasures — should thank those senators who went to the wall for our springs. At the end of the day, however, the people of Florida got hoodwinked, well-intended senators got misled and Florida's environment lost again."
Springs' aid 'doomed from the start' by House decision, advocate says, Tampa Bay Times 5.5.14
"A cadre of business groups, including the Association of Florida Community Developers, the Florida Home Builders Association, the Florida Fertilizer and Agrichemical Association and the Florida Chamber of Commerce, opposed making any changes at all in state law to help springs, arguing the laws already on the books are sufficient."
Editorial: The springs debacle, Ocala Star-Banner 5.4.14
"Florida lawmakers had a rare opportunity during the just completed legislative session to take significant steps toward cleaning up the state's magnificent natural springs, only once again to cave to special interests and suffer policy myopia."
"Five powerful senators, a unanimous vote in the Senate, widespread public support, yet no springs protection bill — all because of a failure of leadership by Weatherford and Scott. All because, once again, special interest concerns matter more in the state capitol than the future of Florida's water supply. How sad."
Lone voice questions canal's impact on water table, Ocala Star-Banner 5.4.14
Lessons to be learned from the 1930's: "The official was Herman Gunter, Florida state geologist, whose voice should have carried some impact but was lost in the beat of the drums to get construction started immediately, even though plans were not complete but were being put together “on the fly,” so to speak."
Money flows into Indian River Lagoon, but not Florida springs, The Daytona News-Journal 5.3.14
But, she added, “here you have springs — a statewide priority — that they’re kind of nickel and diming.”
Springs and Legislature are in a sorry state, Tallahassee Democrat 4.25.14
"Ask yourself which is in a sorrier state — springs or the legislative process that is supposed to protect our interests but unashamedly caters to special interests whose activities have destroyed our springs and who now oppose their restoration?"
Stop making excuses: Save state's springs now, Orlando Sentinel 4.27.14
Roger LinvilleVolunteer and Events Coordinator
St. Johns Riverkeeper
2800 University Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32211
St. Johns Riverkeeper
2800 University Blvd. N.
Jacksonville, FL 32211