environment

Kate Stein / WLRN

Officials from four South Florida counties are collecting public input on an updated regional plan to address climate change and related challenges.

South Florida middle schoolers are folding paper to teach their communities about Florida’s River of Grass.

Origami Everglades is an art project creating life-sized sculptures of the region’s endangered species.

Hear how the project uses a technique called “modular origami” to create the animals.

Origami Everglades is a 2016 Knight Arts Challenge winner. The Knight Foundation is accepting ideas for its 2017 grants through Friday. For details, click here.

People around the world use more than a trillion plastic bags every year. They're made of a notoriously resilient kind of plastic called polyethylene that can take decades to break down.

But the humble wax worm may hold the key to biodegrading them.

It was an accidental discovery. Scientist and beekeeper Federica Bertocchini was frustrated to find that her beehives were infested with the caterpillar larvae of Galleria mellonella, commonly known as a wax worm.

Florida is making it easier for people to help remove invasive Burmese pythons from the Everglades.

A bill that looks to "un-muddy" the mission of Florida's main environmental land acquisition program could potentially affect the plan for an Everglades reservoir.

Red Huber, MCT via Miami Herald

Things are looking up for Florida's manatees.

The West Indian manatee has long been considered "endangered"-- a species on life support. But at the end of March, federal officials changed the manatees' status to “threatened,” which means their condition is less critical. In early 2017, officials counted more than 6,000 manatees in Florida’s waters.

No More Bear Hunt In Florida Until 2019

Apr 20, 2017
Amy Green / WMFE

It will be 2019 before Florida holds another bear hunt.

That’s how the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission voted Wednesday.

The state agency agreed instead to re-examine the state’s bear management plan over the next two years.

"A hunt is consuming. It is consuming to this agency all the way around. And the benefit that we get with this species at this moment at this time, I don’t know if it’s worth the consumption that our team is going to go through," said Brian Yablonski, the commission’s chairman.

Kate Stein / WLRN

Are you a South Floridian who's been meaning to explore the Everglades, ride a boat on Biscayne Bay or trek through Dry Tortugas... but just never gotten around to it?

Well, now you're out of excuses. This weekend (April 22 and 23), you can visit South Florida's three national parks for free. It's part of National Park Week, which goes through Sunday. And the celebration includes abundant activities to highlight these natural, national treasures.

Mark Hedden / WLRN

The end of the wet-foot, dry-foot policy, which allowed Cuban refugees who made it to U.S. soil to stay in the country, also means the end of another phenomenon in the Florida Keys: refugee boats that were abandoned in remote islands.

On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil well drilling platform exploded, spilling millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The spill is considered to be one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history. Fish and plants were killed and entire habitats were damaged, some destroyed.

Some Florida lawmakers want manatees back on the endangered species list.


Water Shortage Warning Issued For South Florida

Apr 14, 2017
J. Pat Carter / Associated Press

Stop sprinkling and washing so much. South Florida is getting dry.

On Thursday, South Florida water managers issued a water shortage warning, asking more than 8 million residents from Orlando to Key West to follow lawn-watering rules and conserve water. If the shortage persists, South Florida Water Management District officials say the agency may consider mandatory restrictions.

Rudiger Bieler, The Field Museum

A sea snail with spider-like abilities.  Sounds like a sci-fi movie monster.

But the creature recently discovered in the Florida Keys is causing some very real anxiety for scientists worried that it could become a particularly troublesome exotic invader.

Kate Stein / WLRN

Sen. Bill Nelson, D-FL, is trying to fill in fellow U.S. senators on climate change. So it makes sense that he invited members of the Commerce Committee — of which he's the ranking minority member — to West Palm Beach to learn about increasing temperatures and rising seas from the experts who know it firsthand.

But whether those committee members will ever hear the testimony from the hearing on Monday is unclear. None of the other 26 senators on the Commerce Committee attended.

Kate Stein / WLRN

A controversial plan to build a reservoir that would help address damaging water discharges in the Everglades ecosystem is one step closer to being enacted — thanks to revisions that take into account the concerns of farmers in the Everglades Agricultural Area.

On Wednesday, Florida’s Senate Appropriations Committee approved a revised version of Senate Bill 10. The bill aims to alleviate blue-green algae on Florida’s coasts by reducing the amount of water that's discharged to the coasts from Lake Okeechobee.

Pages