everglades

Amy Green / WMFE

Among the cow pastures and citrus groves of Florida's heartland north of Lake Okeechobee, patches of wetlands serve as kidneys for the Everglades.

"It filters out all of the impurities, in this case we're talking about nutrients, phosphorous in particular," says Ernie Marks of the South Florida Water Management District.

Marks steps through the grass framing the expanse of reeds and rushes. The vegetation sieves from the water the nutrient responsible for toxic algae blooms. Wading birds like egrets flap among the cabbage palms.

Kate Stein / WLRN

If you scoop a glassful of water from the heart of the Everglades, that water is as pure and clear as the water that flows from your tap.

That’s because chances are good your tap water comes from the Everglades.

One in three Floridians -- more than eight million of us -- gets drinking water from the Biscayne Aquifer a few feet below the southeastern Everglades. The ecosystem acts as a natural filter, removing excess nutrients and keeping out seawater.

Kate Stein / WLRN

Let’s start with what we’re losing: 

One of the most biologically diverse places on Earth, from sawgrass to cypress trees, apple snails to alligators. The historic home of Florida’s Miccosukee and Seminole tribes. A national park.

The ecosystem that ensures fresh drinking water for more than 8 million Floridians.

Everglades advocate Marjory Stoneman Douglas talked about all this in an interview in 1983.

Negron Tries To Boost Case For Water Proposal

Mar 3, 2017

It is "highly unlikely" Florida will get federal officials to turn over control of water releases from Lake Okeechobee, and the state will not get repaid if it advances money to fix the lake's Herbert Hoover Dike, Senate President Joe Negron advised senators on Thursday.

The Trump Administration is rolling back a federal rule that protects small waterways like wetlands and creeks. One expert says the move could leave more Florida farmers and conservationists stuck in court battles.

USGS, via Wikimedia Commons

A proposal to build a water storage reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee could create more than 39,000 jobs, according to a study released Tuesday by the Everglades Foundation.

Charles Trainor Jr. / Miami Herald

A quarter century after the state promised to clean up polluted farm water fouling the Everglades in a historic federal court order, water managers say its time to end the judicial oversight.

House Support Lukewarm For Negron’s Water Plan

Feb 24, 2017

It appears doubtful the House will take up, as written, a $2.4 billion proposal by Senate President Joe Negron to buy land south of Lake Okeechobee to ease the impacts of polluted water releases into estuaries on the east and west coasts.

Jessica Meszaros

This week on The Florida Roundup...

Miami is the second worst city in the Country, next to San Francisco, when it comes to finding affordable hosing. So if you're looking to buy a home in Miami-Dade, where do you go? The Miami Herald has a new tool to help people find homes to fit their price-range. We speak with the reporter behind the special report Nick Nehamaas. 

Everglades NPS via Flickr

A hidden military base. Python catchers from India. Galápagos tortoises and a world-renowned herpetologist. It sounds like an Indiana Jones movie.

But it's all tied to a mystery of the Everglades -- one that will be on display during an event in Homestead on Saturday, Feb. 25.

USGS, via Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Sugar Corporation could be required to sell land for a water storage plan proposed by Florida Senate President Joe Negron.

 

Senate Bill 10, filed last week, contains Negron's proposal to build one or more water storage reservoirs on 60,000 acres south of Lake Okeechobee. The reservoirs would help mitigate blue-green algae growth along Florida's coasts. Under the bill, the South Florida Water Management District would have until the end of 2017 to find a willing seller of 60,000 acres of land.

 

Florida has gone halfway around the world to get help with its python problem.


Everglades Water Quality Nearly At Acceptable Levels

Dec 19, 2016

After more than two decades of work to restore water quality in the Florida Everglades it’s now nearing federal and state standards.


Scientists Seek Re-Evaluation of Everglades Restoration

Dec 19, 2016

A committee of scientists is recommending a re-evaluation of a $16 billion restoration of the Florida Everglades, the largest in American history.


Central Everglades Plan Headed To President Obama

Dec 12, 2016
Carl Juste / Miami Herald

A bill that’s a major step toward restoring the Everglades’ natural water flow is on its way to President Obama.

 

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