News and Announcements

FCC News Brief - June 29, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Wednesday, June 29th, 2016 @ 11:17am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 29, 2016

     

    Bill DiPaolo reports for the Palm Beach Post – “After listening for three hours of cantankerous, impatient and frustrated complaints from local residents, the Martin County Commission…wants the Army Corps of Engineers to close the locks between Lake Okeechobee and the St. Lucie River. ‘The smell is so bad it will make you gag. We have red eyes and scratchy throats…,’ said Mary Radabaugh, one of about 250 people that overflowed the Marin County Commission chambers for the early-morning emergency meeting. However, the Army Corps doesn’t expect to suspend the flow, spokesman John Campbell said…Asking Florida and the federal government to declare a state and federal disaster area in Martin County was also approved by the commission. ‘This is our Deep Water Horizon. It’s time the federal and state government understand how God-awful the problem is here,’ Martin County Commissioner Doug Smith said… ‘We’ve had rashes on our hands. We’re losing thousands of dollars. I want this fixed,’ Bruce Hrobak, owner of Billy Bones Bait & Tackle, demanded of the commission.” Read As smell, sight of algae persists in TCoast, public demands solutions

    Jennifer Sorentrue reports for my Palm Beach Post – “Concern about shorelines is on the rise…just days away from one of the most popular beach getaway weekends – the Fourth of July holiday. Some Martin County beaches are off limits due to a widespread algae bloom. The…algae…has been spotted in waterways and canals across much of South Florida…No swimming advisories were also placed on four beaches in the panhandle’s Okaloosa County…due to elevated bacterial readings in water quality tests. State officials also monitoring an algae bloom near Jacksonville.” Read Algae bloom, bacterial spike close several South Florida beaches

    Kevin Powers writes for the TC Palm – “Recent opinions published by this newspaper have suggested that purchasing thousands of acres south of Lake Okeechobee for water storage is the only viable solution for reducing the lake releases that have affected the St. Lucie River this year. However, storage all around the lake…coming from projects already in the works is the long-term solution…The South Florida Water Management District Governing Board is using the University of Florida Water Institute’s 2015 study to guide its efforts in creating more storage in the region’s water management system. The study estimates a need for 200,000 acre-feet of storage in the St. Lucie watershed and another 1 million acre-feet ‘distributed north and south of Lake Okeechobee.’” Read SFWMD board is ‘continually evaluating the best options’ for storing water

    Todd Wilkinson reports for National Geographic – “In the age of the Anthropocene, is it really possible, long-term, to sustain growing numbers of human beings and wildlife…on landscapes already crowded- and likely to be left literally shrunken in decades ahead…?...Fleming, senior Florida representative for Defenders of Wildlife…says strong evidence suggests that most (bear-human) conflicts come from bears wandering into the suburbs and becoming habituated to eating human trash, seed in bird feeders, and pet food. Bears that rely on unnatural edibles become more aggressive and can present a threat to people and property…(FWC Chairman) Yablonski agrees that with hunting temporarily taken off the table, the main focus should now be on how to decrease conflicts…[B]ears…endure in scattered sub-populations geographically isolated from one another and that increases the chances of small clusters of bears disappearing…Yablonski says there are still federal and state public lands in Florida suitable for bears and he believes that achieving connectivity between isolated sub-populations is possible…Within 30 years, Florida’s human population…is conservatively projected to add another seven million people…More than bullets, the real enemy of bears is sprawl…[I]f climate change scenarios play out, rising seas will force people to leave coastal areas and resettle in the Florida interior, squeezing the last bastions of sound bear habitat even more.” Read Dead Cubs, Illegal Baiting Lead to Bear Hunt Suspension

    Keith Morelli reports for Florida Politics – “The Southwest Florida Water Management District Governing Board…selected Brian Armstrong as executive director…He previously was the assistant director for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Southwest District, where he restructured the district’s operations by reducing costs, including staff layoffs, and improving internal operating performance. Armstrong is a licensed professional geologist who earned his Bachelor of Science degree and his master’s degree in hydrogeology from the University of South Florida.” Read Personnel note: SWFTMD announces new executive director

    Sara Ganim reports for CNN – “Eighteen million Americans live in communities where the water systems are in violation of the law. Moreover, the federal agency in charge of making sure those systems are safe not only knows the issues exist, but it’s done very little to stop them…More than 5,300 water systems in America are in violation of the EPA’s lead and copper rule…What’s worse…the EPA is also aware that many utilities ‘game the system,’ using flowed or questionable testing methods in order to avoid detecting high levels of lead. That means there could be many more communities violating the laws…And the public has no idea. Even Flint, a city with the most notorious case of lead in water discovered, is still not listed as having violated the EPA’s lead and copper rule.” Read 5,300 U.S. water systems are in violation of lead rules

    Kevin Spear reports for the Orlando Sentinel – “[S]everal South Florida utilities [are] among the largest in the nation that reported violations of the U.S. Lead and Copper Rule… ‘Lead exposure can decrease a child’s cognitive capacity, can cause behavioral problems and can limit a child’s ability to concentrate,’ said NRDC scientist Kristi Pullen-Fedinick.” Read Group raises alarm over lead in drinking water

    Laura Paddison reports for The Guardian – “Britain’s decision to leave the European Union was not a vote against climate change, nor was it a vote against the innovation key to fighting climate change, UN climate chief Christina Figueres told an audience of business and policymakers at the annual Business  Climate summit in London...” Read Brexit is not a vote against climate change says UN’s climate chief

     

     

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 16, 2:00 pm – Attend “Snakes of Florida,” a presentation by David Cook, an FWC biologist. This is part of the Wildwood Preservation Society Lecture Series. The lecture will be given at 3043 Capitol Circle NW in Tallahassee. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 2, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The August class will focus on springs stresses: groundwater pumping, fertilizers, wastewater disposal, and recreation.

    August 6, 2:00 pm – Attend “Using GIS for conservation, preservation, recreation and restoration in Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Dr. Christine Ambrose, a GIS specialist and biologist. This is part of the Wildwood Preservation Society Lecture Series. The lecture will be given at 3043 Capitol Circle NW in Tallahassee. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

    September 6, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The September class will focus on springs advocacy: local, state, national.

    September 30th- October 2nd – Attend the 2016 Florida Springs Restoration Summit. The deadline to submit posters is approaching and registration will open in July. The Summit will take place at the College of Central Florida in Ocala. For more information about the Summit and registration details, click here.

     

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 28, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Tuesday, June 28th, 2016 @ 11:55am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 28, 2016

     

    Jake Galvin and Dan Christensen report for Florida Bull Dog – “In an escalating effort to block the…Sabal Trail natural gas pipeline, opponents are asking the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to examine allegations that information about potential environmental hazards was overlooked… ‘There is significant evidence…of sinkholes, springs and the underground transmission of water for many miles that were not included in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Final Environmental Impact Statement,’ said U.S. Rep. Sanford D. Bishop Jr., D-Ga…Florida Gov. Rick Scott has been both a key Sabal Trail backer and a stockholder in the project’s majority owner, Spectra Energy. In 2013, Scott signed into law a pair of bills designed to speed up permitting for the project…[T]he Scott-appointed Florida Public Service Commission unanimously approved construction of Sabal Trail…[T]he Florida Department of Environmental Protection, which reports to Scott, decided that Sabal Trail…was ‘clearly in the public interest.’ In Georgia, however, Sabal Trail has met resistance….While a trio of north Florida counties…sent letters…requesting a…supplemental environmental impact statement, (U.S. Rep.) Yoho (R-Gainesville) believes Sabal Trail is safe and should move forward.” Read Push to block Sabal Trail gas pipeline looks to enlist U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

    State Sen. Jeffrey Brandes writes for the Pensacola News Journal – “This year, the Florida Senate and Florida House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation that will give voters the opportunity to clear the way for more solar energy in our state. This issue will appear as Amendment 4 on the August 2016 primary election ballot…Amendment 4 will expand an exemption that currently exists in law for residential properties to…commercial customers that choose to install solar. The passage of Amendment 4 will spur tremendous investments in renewable energy…The great news is that everyone will have the opportunity to vote on this amendment, regardless of their political affiliation. If you are registered to vote, you can support this important issue by voting early, absentee or at the polls on Aug. 40, 2016. Like most constitutional ballot amendments, the wording is complex but the effect is simple: more solar, more jobs, and more affordable energy options.” Read Florida should lead in solar production

    Jeff Gill reports for the Gainesville Times – “[A] trial in Washington over water sharing between Georgia and Florida may not mean the end of the decades long ‘water wars.’…The Army Corps of Engineers is working on a final version of operating plans for the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River Basin… ‘That can always be the subject of litigation,’ said Clyde Morris…Ralph I. Lancaster, a Maine lawyer appointed by the Supreme Court to oversee the case, would preside over the trial, which would be held in U.S. District Court. He ‘doesn’t have the authority to rule (in the case),’ Morris said. ‘He will make a recommendation to the Supreme Court, then it’s up to justices to actually render an order.’” Read Oct. 31 trial in DC may not end states’ water battle

    Maggy Hurchalla writes for the TC Palm – “The South Florida Water Management District Hazardous Algae Blooms site notes that in Lake Okeechobee monitoring indicates high toxin levels have been measured when there is no apparent bloom. The toxin doesn’t go away when the algae dies. Researchers measuring toxin levels in sediments in shallow eutrophic lakes (think Lake Okeechobee) found toxins persisted in sediments…We have [BMAA]. We don’t know how much. The state doesn’t test for it. It has been proven to cause a neurological disease…similar to…ALS…Those who are being exposed need to know what’s happening. We need to ask the governor and the president to immediately create a state/federal research team to explore the health threats from cyanobacteria in Lake Okeechobee and the St. Lucie River estuary. We need to ask the Legislature to require monitoring and treatment to reduce phosphorus flow to Lake Okeechobee from all directions. Voluntary “best management practices” have not worked. Untreated pumped discharges to the lake are still going on.” Read Don’t dismiss dangers of algae in our waterways

    Andrew Ruiz reports for WPTV – “Commissioners in Martin County will hold an emergency meeting Tuesday in response to the algae crisis. People are demanding answers, but the county is caught in the cross-hairs and says there isn’t much they can do about the discharges from Lake Okeechobee…It is likely the Martin County Commission will request that [Gov. Rick Scott] declare a state of emergency.” Read Martin County holding emergency meeting over algae Tuesday

    Wayne Washington reports for my Palm Beach Post – “Fritz, one of the five voters whose support led to the creation of Palm Beach County’s newest city, is being held in the Palm Beach County Jail on a battery charge for allegedly attacking his girlfriend…The Seminole Pratt Whitney address (owned by Minto Communities) is listed in elections records as being shared by Fritz, Rinaldi, Kara Crump, William Guevara and Phillip Everett, the five whose voters were all that was necessary to convert the Seminole Improvement District into Palm Beach County’s 39th city in an election made possible under a law passed by the Legislature in 2012. Westlake’s founding has generated anger from those who worry it means unchecked growth in an area known for horses and dirt roads…Fritz…agreed to serve as one of [the new city’s] transitional council members…[Locals] blame Minto for the incorporation of the new city, which they fear will bring more traffic and change to their rural lifestyle…Incorporation could open the door to a larger project than the one Minto laid out in plans it presented to the county.” Read Founding council member for new city of Westlake in jail

    Joanna Klein reports for The New York Times – “Algae changes snow’s albedo, or how much light, or radiation, its surface reflects back into the atmosphere…[A] new study estimated that blooms of snow algae can lead to an albedo decrease of 13 percent over the course of an Arctic melt season, compared with clean snow…Just how much melting this will account for, or how much that may affect sea level rise…is still to be determined…Current climate models take into account how soot from forest fires, dust from the Sahara or even increased water content (which slightly darkens snow to blue) affect albedo, but they have yet to measure biological effects, like that of algae.” Read Watermelon Snow: Not Edible but Important for Climate Change

     

     

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 16, 2:00 pm – Attend “Snakes of Florida,” a presentation by David Cook, an FWC biologist. This is part of the Wildwood Preservation Society Lecture Series. The lecture will be given at 3043 Capitol Circle NW in Tallahassee. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 2, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The August class will focus on springs stresses: groundwater pumping, fertilizers, wastewater disposal, and recreation.

    August 6, 2:00 pm – Attend “Using GIS for conservation, preservation, recreation and restoration in Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Dr. Christine Ambrose, a GIS specialist and biologist. This is part of the Wildwood Preservation Society Lecture Series. The lecture will be given at 3043 Capitol Circle NW in Tallahassee. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

    September 6, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The September class will focus on springs advocacy: local, state, national.

    September 30th- October 2nd – Attend the 2016 Florida Springs Restoration Summit. The deadline to submit posters is approaching and registration will open in July. The Summit will take place at the College of Central Florida in Ocala. For more information about the Summit and registration details, click here.

     

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 27, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Monday, June 27th, 2016 @ 9:45am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 27, 2016

     

    Sue Carlton writes for the Tampa Bay Times – “Nuisance bears? How about nuisance humans with their all-too available garbage? How about the nuisance paving over of too much wildlife habitat in this state?...The surprise reprieve (from the bear hunt) is good news for bears and also for people who want to keep as much of the good in our state as we can. It gives us a chance to talk solutions, like putting bear-proof garbage cans in places they’re needed to keep animals from scavenging too close to humans. It lets us consider ideas like buffer zones between places bears already roam and new housing or retail developments.” Read Carlton: Bears 1, Hunters 0

    Mona Shand reports for the Public News Service – “Without changes in the way electricity is produced and how it is used, Floridians will likely see a nearly 17 percent increase in their electric bills over the next 15 years, according to a new study…The report finds that implementing the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan could halt that increase, saving the average Florida household more than $2,600 over the same period…The report also finds that by reducing emissions, the plan…would improve the nation’s health, preventing thousands of illnesses, premature deaths and hospital admissions each year.” Read Report: Clean Energy Plan Will Cut Electric Bills

    Peter Schorsch reports for Florida Politics – “Shortly after Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio announced he would run for re-election, the environmentalist group League of Conservation Voters took him to task for his positions on the environment and said he was ‘wrong for Florida.’” Read Conservation group takes Marco Rubio to task, calls him ‘wrong for Florida’

    C.T. Bowen writes for the Tampa Bay Times – “Williams…was one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit against Pasco County that brought a settlement 16 years ago requiring the county to step up its environmental stewardship. Commissioners approved one of the final pieces…creating a wildlife corridor ordinance intended to let animals traverse protected land connecting existing preserves…[S]till a bone of contention is the ability to narrow the originally proposed 2,200-foot corridor…by as much as 75 percent. The corridor route also can be moved. It helped to appease objecting property owners. ‘Flexibility? That’s not a good thing,’ said Williams. ‘Especially for panthers. They travel huge distances, and there needs to be enough room.’… ‘Do we want to live in native Florida or in a state that is nothing more than a variation of cookie-cutter communities?’” Read Activist wonders: Native Florida or cookie-cutter communities?

    Fox 4 reports – “Officials say a Florida panther has been found dead in southwest Florida…A total of 27 Florida panthers have been found dead in 2016, with 21 road fatalities.” Read Panther found dead on southwest Florida property

    Christian Spiler, Mitch Hutchcraft, and Garrett Wallace, Alico Inc. write – “One element of the HCP that has been grossly distorted is the incidental take permit. Contrary to what has been said, an incidental take permit in no way allows for the intentional killing of an imperiled species…[A]s property owners, we believe that are many benefits that come with the HCP that strike the right balance between the need for future development and conservation.” Read Setting the record straight on what the HCP does do, and doesn’t

    Mary Ellen Klas reports for the Miami Herald – “With its future nuclear construction plans on hold, and plans to seek a major rate increase, Florida Power & Light has asked to take a break from charging customers for nuclear plant development next year. Meanwhile…[FPL] has said that the clean-up efforts (at Turkey Point) could cost about $50 million in the first year alone and could increase the typical customer bill 25 to 50 cents a month….[The] rate increase…could increase customer bills by 27 percent. If the PSC approves the full rate increase, a customer who uses 1,000 kilowatt hours a month will see base rates increase by $14.67 a month to $71.67 by June 2019.” Read FPL offers to skip nuclear fee- but rate hike is still looming

    Nicole Orttung reports for The Christian Science Monitor – “NASA just released designs for a plane that will test cutting-edge, zero-emission airplane propulsion technology…The global aviation industry is responsible for 2 percent of human-induced CO2 emissions, about the same as Germany’s total emissions, and the industry’s CO2 emissions are predicted to triple by the middle of the century if flight volumes grow as anticipated. But the aviation industry…in February agreed to the first binding limits on carbon dioxide emissions…Airbus hopes to be selling passenger planes powered by hybrid engines by 2030…and said it’s been spurred…by stricter European emission rules…Solar Impulse, a privately-finances solar-powered aircraft, completed a 5-day flight…relying exclusively on solar power…” Read Clean skies ahead? NASA unveils electric plane

     

     

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 16, 2:00 pm – Attend “Snakes of Florida,” a presentation by David Cook, an FWC biologist. This is part of the Wildwood Preservation Society Lecture Series. The lecture will be given at 3043 Capitol Circle NW in Tallahassee. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 2, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The August class will focus on springs stresses: groundwater pumping, fertilizers, wastewater disposal, and recreation.

    August 6, 2:00 pm – Attend “Using GIS for conservation, preservation, recreation and restoration in Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Dr. Christine Ambrose, a GIS specialist and biologist. This is part of the Wildwood Preservation Society Lecture Series. The lecture will be given at 3043 Capitol Circle NW in Tallahassee. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

    September 6, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The September class will focus on springs advocacy: local, state, national.

    September 30th- October 2nd – Attend the 2016 Florida Springs Restoration Summit. The deadline to submit posters is approaching and registration will open in July. The Summit will take place at the College of Central Florida in Ocala. For more information about the Summit and registration details, click here.

     

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 24, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Friday, June 24th, 2016 @ 11:52am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 24, 2016

     

    Angie Schmitt writes for Streets Blog USA – “Information about [TBX’s] finances is hazy, and Florida DOT has proven that its traffic projections for toll road projects are worthless…If the highway widenings are built, Governor Rick Scott’s state DOT will seize properties to ram through the new lanes. Of the residents who’ll be uprooted, 80 percent are black or Latino…Sprawling development is sure to follow. ‘You would see a weakening of the trend toward the revitalization of in-town neighborhoods and instead new housing stock farther and farther from the urban core,’ said Thomas Hawkins of the smart growth advocacy group 1000 Friends of Florida.” Read Massive Highway Expansion Threatens to Destroy Tampa Neighborhoods

    Caitlin Johnston reports for the Tampa Bay Times – “The Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization voted 12 to 4 shortly after 2 a.m…to keep the divisive $6 billion road project known as TBX…in its long-term funding plans…[There has been] mounting opposition from Central Tampa neighborhoods and groups like 1,000 Friends of Florida…An estimated 500 people flooded the county’s headquarters…[S]peakers opposed to the project outnumbered those in favor by a 2:1 ratio…Some of the challengers sported T-shirts and pajama pants, while many of the champions stood in suits and ties…[S]tudents, entrepreneurs and teachers spoke out against the project while executives and former DOT officials advocated for its continuation. ‘These are people who are paid to be here…,’ Seminole Heights resident and business owner Nikki Rice said… ‘It is time now to consider your constituents.’…[P]ublic comment lasted seven hours…TBX will add…toll lanes to 90 miles of previously free roads…When traffic in the main lanes is at its worst, it could cost…$2 to travel a single mile in the express lane…[T]he…vote allows the project to move forward, but in no way…prevents officials from opposing it in the future…DOT has told local officials that if they remove TBX from Hillsborough’s long-range plan, the billions the state would allocate for the project…would be used to add toll lanes to highways in other parts of Florida.” Read In wee hours, Hillsborough leaders approve Tampa Bay Express, keep it in long-term plan (w/video)

    Naples Daily News reports – “An endangered Florida panther [was] struck by a vehicle near Ave Maria…[P]anther deaths are on a record-setting pace. The FWC has found 21 roadkill panthers, mostly in Southwest Florida, out of a total of 26 overall panther deaths reported.” Read Florida records its 21st roadkill panther death for 2016

    Chad Gillis reports for News Press – “Florida will not allow black bear hunting in 2016…Human-bear conflicts are at the heart of the decision, although the state admitted prior to last year’s hunt that hunting bears does nothing to reduce the number of human-bear conflicts in an area…Maria Bolton-Joubert…said many FWC commissioners have a conflict of interest because they work in the real estate and development industries. She…added that she and others are working to change state laws to require FWC commissioners be elected instead of appointed by the governor…Whitey Markle with the Florida Sierra Club said he thinks the hunt is part of an overall plan to further develop Florida. Gov. Rick Scott, Markle said, wants to push out wildlife to make room for more gated communities and shopping malls… ‘When we hear estimates that aren’t final, I’m not sure that is good enough for the people of Florida,’ said Bergeron, the only FWC commissioner to vote against both the black bear hunt and the state’s equally controversial panther position paper.” Read No Florida black bear hunt this year

    Amy Coombs reports for EOS – “As climates change over the next century, many species of plants and animals will be forced to change their habitat ranges to survive. According to the first continent-wide geospatial study of climate connectivity- a measure of the migratory routes between warm and cool zones- only 2% of the eastern United States contain the connected green space needed for animals to find new homes… ‘The East Cost is in dire shape because habitat is already in very small patches,’ says study author Jenny McGuire… ‘By tracing connectivity across coastal and mountainous regions, we can see areas where restoration work would significantly expand connectivity in the East’ [said Ackerly of the University of California, Berkeley.]” Read Habitat Fragmentation Prevents Migration During Climate Change

    Robert Walton reports for Utility Dive – “Florida Power & Light has proposed purchasing a…coal-fired plant it has contracts with for the next nine years, shutting it down and saving customers $129 million in the process, SNL Energy reports…Closing down the…facility…would halt more than 657,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually, FPL said.” Read Florida Power & Light proposes buying and shuttering 330 MW coal plant

    First Post writes – “Under the Paris agreement, all parties, including regional economic organizations like EU and their member states, each member state individually and the EU as a whole, will be responsible for the allocated emission level. Brexit…[means] that EU, as well as Britain, has to notify its revised pledge. This would mean renewed consultations with the remaining 27 EU countries…[The Paris agreement will enter into force] when 55 parties to the Convention, accounting for at least an estimated 55 per cent of the total GHG emissions, have ratified the protocol…China and the US together account for nearly 40 percent of global GHG emissions. The EU, which has a 10 percent share, is therefore key to making the Paris agreement work. The process of revising pledges is likely to delay this at a time when urgency and ambition to address climate change is of paramount importance…[R]ight wingers who are doggedly fighting…immigration are not far from the likes of Australia’s Tony Abbott or Canada’s Stephen Harper- who had just walked out of the Kyoto Protocol- 15 years after its implementation began.” Read Brexit: Referendum results may impact Paris climate change agreement

    Sumter County Times reports – “At its June meeting the (Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation) Commission recommended staff move forward with efforts to establish a suite of new Critical Wildlife Areas and modify five existing CWAs. CWAs are established by the FWC…to protect important wildlife concentrations from human disturbance during critical periods of their life cycles, such as breeding, feeding or migration…All of the proposed CWAs would protect shorebirds, seabirds or wading birds except the Withlacoochee Caves, which would protect southeastern myotis and tricolored bats….Staff are working with landowners, stakeholders and partners like Audubon Florida to further develop the proposed boundaries and closure dates. The FWC will also hold public workshops…” Read FWC moving forward with statewide conservation effort

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 23, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Thursday, June 23rd, 2016 @ 1:01pm

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 23, 2016

     

    Craig Pittman reports for the Tampa Bay Times – “In a surprise move, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission voted 4-3 late Wednesday  to hold off on having a second bear hunt later this year…Leading the charge for the delay…was Commissioner Ron Bergeron, who was the lone no vote last year… ‘We have to do what’s best for the bears,’ he said, urging the staff to provide scientific answers to some of the questions raised during the hearing, as well as seeing how better garbage-can management and habitat protection may work out. He said he wanted to ensure the state was allowing the hunting of bears that were excess to the habitat, not just allowing hunting for the sake of hunting…Elizabeth Fleming of Defenders of Wildlife, who had urged commissioners to hold off on a second hunt for a year, said the way the first hunt went had hurt the agency’s credibility. By waiting a year, the commissioners showed that they are listening to the public and paying attention to the need for other measures to deal with the bear population, Fleming said…[She] said she’s sure that next year the commissioners will be even more determined to schedule a hunt for 2017.” Read Good News, bears! No hunting for you in Florida this year

    Gray Rohrer reports for the Orlando Sentinel – “There will not be a state-sanctioned bear hunt this year…The 4-3 vote came after more than eight hours of public testimony at the meeting in the Panhandle town of Eastpoint, with most speakers opposed to a second bear hunt in as many years. Opponents of the hunt said it isn’t necessary and although numbers are increasing in the state, bears are still an imperiled species in Florida… ‘The problem in Florida is not an excess of bears but an excess of trash,’ said Kate MacFall, Florida state director of the Humane Society…Other anti-hunt speakers insisted…more studies and examinations of bear population estimates are needed…FWC is providing grants to communities to help provide bear-resistant trash cans, banning harvesting palmetto berries…on state lands and increasing warnings for homeowners who fail to secure garbage cans…” Read No bear hunt this year, state officials say

    Jeff Gill reports for Gainesville Times – “A trial is set to begin Oct. 31 over allegations that Georgia residents are drinking up too much water before the resource reaches Florida…However, the case won’t reach that stage if the states settle out of court. Florida and Georgia have said they’re actively engaged in mediation efforts.” Read Oct. 31 trial date set in Georgia-Florida water wars case

    Tyler Treadway reports for the TC Palm – “Algae blooms in the St. Lucie River are getting more numerous, and a massive bloom in Lake Okeechobee apparently is getting more toxic.” Read Massive Lake Okeechobee algae bloom getting more toxic

    Nuclear Street News reports – “Florida Power & Light (FPL) said that it had reached an agreement with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection through a detailed Consent Order that finalizes a long-term plan to remove hypersaline water from underneath and near the cooling canal system at the Turkey Point Power Plant 20 miles south of Miami…The plan is expected to cost FPL $50 million in the first year alone.” Read Florida Power & Light, State of Florida, Have Plan to Refresh Canal System

    Susan Salisbury reports for my Palm Beach Post – “Florida Power & Light Co.’s $1.33 billion rate increase will come totally from its customers, and the company is seeking to raise various fees as well as the amount it charges for electricity to accomplish that.” Read FPL rate case: Customer service charge could increase 27 percent

    Tom Randall reports for Bloomberg – “The way we get electricity is about to change dramatically, as the era of ever-expanding demand for fossil fuels comes to an end- in less than a decade. That’s according to a new forecast by Bloomberg New Energy Finance that plots out global power markets for the next 25 years. Call it peak fossil fuels, a turnabout that’s happening not because we’re running out of coal and gas, but because we’re finding cheaper alternatives. Demand is peaking ahead of schedule because electric cars and affordable battery storage for renewable power are arriving faster than expected, as are changes in China’s energy mix…The costs of wind and solar power are falling too quickly for gas ever to dominate on a global scale…Already, in many regions, the lifetime cost of wind and solar is less than the cost of building a new fossil fuel plants, and that trend will continue. But by 2027…building new wind farms and solar fields will often be cheaper than running the existing coal and gas generators…Without additional policy action by governments, global carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector will peak in the 2020s and remain relatively flat for the foreseeable future. That’s not enough to prevent the surface of the Earth from heating more than 2 degrees Celsius...” Read The World Nears Peak Fossil Fuels for Electricity

    Richard Conniff writes for The New York Times – “[C]onservatives used to be almost by definition conservationists, focused on preserving our shared heritage from destructive influences...Theodore Roosevelt [and other wealthy big game hunters] went on to save the bison from extinction, greatly expand the national park system, and help establish both the National Wildlife Refuge System and the United States Forest Service. The Lacey Act, still our most important law against wildlife crime, was largely their doing…[M]ost of the credit for protecting [the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge] belongs to Dwight D. Eisenhower, who also signed the nation’s first air pollution control law. Richard M. Nixon…[established] the Environmental Protection Agency and [enacted] the Clean Air Act and the Endangered Species Act…George H.W. Bush…began to take conservation in a new market-based direction, pushing through a cap-and-trade system…that enabled industry to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions, which causes acid rain, far more quickly and cheaply than anyone imagined possible. So what does it take to bring conservatives back, after a quarter-century of their reflexively treating even the mention of environmental issues as a treasonous attack on business and the nation?” Read Dear Conservatives, You Can Go Green Again

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 23, 6:30 pm – Attend Tampa Climate Justice Committee Potluck & Politics Movie Night at 3105 W Waters Ave, Tampa, FL 3314-2865 Suite 107. The featured movie is “This Changes Everything,” which presents portraits from Montana’s Powder River Basin, the Albert Tar Sands lands, the coast of South India, etc. For more information, contact Debbie King at (813) 500- 1763 or debbie@organizeflorida.org

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 22, 2016

E-mail sent by Gladys Delgadillo, Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016 @ 6:05am

FCC News Brief

Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

June 22, 2016

 

Jim Turner reports for the News Service of Florida – “The recommendation to hold the state’s second bear hunt in the past 20 years expands on a proposal from state biologists without offering hard numbers of bears that could be killed or suggesting a number of permits that could be made available or the costs of permits. Tammy Sapp, a spokeswoman for the commission, said more specifics will be discussed when the commission begins a two-day meeting Wednesday in the Franklin County community of Eastpoint… ‘The upcoming meeting is most likely a dog and pony show to act like they care what the public thinks,’ the (Stop the Florida Bear Hunt) group said on Facebook. ‘There is no way they can enforce any of these rules. It is left up to the trophy hunter using the honor system.’…Based on a map that will be shown to the commission…hunting could be opened in 32 counties from the Panhandle counties of Bay, Jackson and Washington counties east to the Atlantic Ocean, omitting Nassau and Duval counties. In Southwest Florida, the hunt would be allowed in Collier, Lee and Hendry counties…” Read Florida’s new bear hunt plan would entail three four-day periods

TC Palm Editorial Board writes – “Just as this Editorial Board said last November, another (bear) hunt in 2016 is a bad idea that is unsupported by science. Furthermore, another hunt would fail to follow FWC’s own policy guidelines in a 2012 Bear Management Plan when the species was taken off the threatened list…The new state population numbers…scientists argue offer only a snapshot of the true situation rather than a detailed analysis…Some areas, such as the Big Bend bear management area and the South Central area…have vulnerable populations. It has been suggested that allowing more hunting in these areas could lead to the extinction of bears there. The 2012 Bear Management Plan recommended creating pathways to allow animals to move from area to area, thus building up the gene pool in low-population areas. This has yet to happen.” Read Bear hunt remains a bad idea for Florida

Ron Littlepage writes for The Florida Times Union – “Brevard County wants to put a garbage dump (a Class I landfill and a Class III landfill) in the floodplain and wetlands of the St. Johns River. I know this will come as a shock to you, but the Florida Department of Environmental Protection…has given its blessing to the project…A Class I landfill can receive household, commercial, industrial and agricultural waste. Yard trash, construction and demolition debris, waste tires, asbestos, carpets,…plastic and furniture can be dumped into a Class III landfill…[T]he St. Johns flows north, so whatever seeps into the river there would be headed for downtown Jacksonville…Two powerful landowners are challenging the DEP permit. One is the Deseret Ranch…The other is Deer Park Ranch…During last weekend, giant algae blooms spread across Doctors Lake and in parts of the river…” Read Is a landfill in our river’s future?

David Goodhue reports for FL Keys News – “Most experts agree that there is little to nothing that can be done to stop the seagrass die-off and resulting algae blooms this time, but groups like Florida Bay Forever, the Everglades Foundation and the Audubon Society of the Everglades say there are ways to prevent similar phenomena from happening again.” Read Seagrass die-off can’t be stopped

Mark Perry writes for the TC Palm – “There is a lot of misinformation – and missing information – about water flows and pollution in South Florida, including full-page advertisements from U.S. Sugar Corp. and the Economic Council of Martin County…[H]ere are the facts taken directly from the South Florida Water Management District.” Read Let’s set record straight on ‘discharge’ issue

The University of Alabama reports – “Drs. Gregory Starr and Christina Staudhammer, professors in the department of biological sciences, along with collaborators from Florida International University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Forest Service recently received $834,000 from the National Science Foundation to continue their study of greenhouse gases in the Everglades. They will specifically look at how changes in fresh- and sea-water levels are affecting the balance of carbon-dioxide and methane emissions in the Everglades. ‘Historically, the Everglades were a great sink for carbon – taking in a lot of carbon dioxide and holding it in the peat layers,’ Starr explained. ‘But over the course of the last decade, we have seen that this is no longer the case…’” Read UA Researchers Receive NSF Grant to Study Everglades’ Greenhouse Gases

Santa Rosa’s Press Gazette reports – “More than 1,000 acres of the Blackwater River, Pine Log and Point Washington state forests have increased in biodiversity during the past three years due to an ongoing Florida Forest Service reforestation project. The longleaf pine ecosystem is experiencing a rebirth after approximately 1,094 acres were restored in Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Walton, Washington and Bay counties’ three state forests.” Read Florida Forest Service restores, maintains Northwest Florida’s longleaf ecosystem

Susan K. Moran reports for Scientific American – “Globally, more than 90 percent of the nitrogen used to produce meat and dairy products, along with 90 percent used to grow plant-based foods, is lost to the environment. It contaminates streams, lakes and oceans as well as drinking water, and fuels the growth of algae and other organisms that can suffocate fish and kill plants. And much of the nitrogen that crops and livestock do absorb, and we thus consume, exits our bodies as sewage, a significant source of nitrogen pollution when it is not sufficiently treated…Nitrogen fertilizer also contributes to climate change…” Read Wastewater is Key to Reducing Nitrogen Pollution

 

 

From Our Readers

The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

 



Job Postings

The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


Petitions

Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

Save the Econlockhatchee River!

Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

Paynes Prairie in danger

Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

 

Making Connections

Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at .

 

Upcoming Environmental Events

June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

 

 

 

Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 21, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Tuesday, June 21st, 2016 @ 8:58am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 21, 2016

     

    Eric Staats reports for the Naples Daily News – “Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission biologists recommended…that the state hold another bear hunt in 2016 but with new restrictions…Under [the] recommendation, set for a June 22 vote by the FWC board, the state would reduce the area open to bear hunting to match areas where human-bear conflicts…are most common…New rules also would prohibit hunting a bear with any other bear present…further restrict hunting near game feeding stations; limit the number of bear permits; and improve enforcement by requiring hunters to tag bears immediately…The FWC did not release more specifics…about the new proposed number of permits or about whether the state would reduce the number of bears that could be killed…Instead of all the hunters being allowed to hunt for the length of the season, hunters would be divided into three hunt periods from Oct. 21-24, Oct. 26-29 and Oct. 31-Nov. 3…Hunters…would be allowed to hunt in only one hunt zone…Defenders of Wildlife Florida program director Elizabeth Fleming said Florida should take a one-year hiatus from bear hunting to more thoroughly evaluate bear populations and the 2015 hunt…Florida Wildlife Federation President Manley Fuller said bear hunting should be allowed in 2016 only in parts of the state where the FWC is able to complete a more detailed bear population sustainability analysis.” Read FWC biologists recommend ‘more conservative’ Florida black bear hunt for 2016

    My Palm Beach Post Editorial Board writes – “The basic problem with black bears isn’t a bear problem at all. It’s a people problem -1,000 people moving into Florida every day, needing more houses and stores and roads, and shrinking the bears’ habitat. No wonder that in certain areas, bears are poking around residents’ backyards. But the fix isn’t to give gun enthusiasts and trophy hunters another field day. It’s to spread the use of bear-resistant garbage cans and to create black bear sanctuaries…Heed the scientists. We want to be sure that black bears still exist in this state during our children’s and grandchildren’s lifetimes.” Read Heed scientists before forging ahead with another bear hunt

    Sun Sentinel Editorial Board writes – “[W]e strongly encourage the (Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation) commission to nix the idea of another hasty (bear) hunt…It’s…worth noting that commissioners in Seminole County, who oppose the hunt, said bear interactions have noticeably declined since they passed an ordinance in December that sets rules for trash containers and leaving food outdoors…[A]gainst the voices of elected leaders, come the calls of the National Rifle Association…which want another hunt and more hunting days, too…Florida doesn’t need another bear hunt, especially when the first did little more than shine a negative spotlight about bears being killed here, including mother bears that were lactating. The best way to reduce any problem with nuisance bears is to better educate the public and enforce the use of bear-proof trash containers. Rather than lock and load on another bear hunt, the FWC should hit the pause button, better assess the bear population and amp up public education. Before aiming to kill, let’s first try an ounce of prevention.” Read No need for another bear hunt

    News4Jax reports – “Conservationists, animal advocates, and other grassroots activists [gathered] in over 28 cities across Florida…on June 18 to protest the state’s bear hunts. The advocates insist that last fall’s hunt…proceeded despite widespread objection from citizens, scientists and local leaders…The FWC has released updated bear population data, but the information was collected prior to the hunt so it does not take into account bears…killed as part of the hunt. The Florida Wildlife Federation has stepped up and recorded its opposition to a 2016 bear hunt. In addition, six counties—Seminole, Volusia, Hillsborough, Pinellas, Miami-Dade and Alachua—and fourteen cities—…have all passed resolutions or proclamations opposing the bear hunt. But the authority of the FWC surpasses local ordinances. According to animal advocates, in addition to the 304 bears killed in the hunt last year, another 243 were killed by vehicles and 129 were killed by the FWC. They said those numbers do not include cubs orphaned by the hunt or deaths by natural causes. The advocates assert that bears need attractant control, not population control… ‘Instead of another bear hunt, we need beefed up enforcement and stiffer fines for people that feed bears directly or leave attractants such as unsecured trash, bird feeders, fallen fruit or pet food accessible to bears,’ the advocates said…” Read Protests of bear hunt planned in 28 cities

    The Tampa Bay Times Editorial Board writes – “The FWC should take heed of the outpouring of criticism, wait for better information about the bear population and reject another bear hunting season this fall.” Read No more bear hunts in Florida

    The Gainesville Sun reports – “The Alachua County Environmental Protection Department has three grants to help support local springs protection and water conservation efforts…Grants from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and the Suwannee and St. Johns River Water Management Districts will go toward two rebate programs. The first program provides $105,000 for incentives for the State’s voluntary Florida Water Star certification program…The second rebate program has a total of $300,000 for property owners who replace irrigated turf with Florida Friendly Landscaping.” Read New grants support water-saving efforts

    Melissa Ross reports for Florida Politics – “The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is out with a new report detailing the state, county, and local voting changes- proposed or implemented- during the past three years since the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder. The report…looks at how states and counties with a history of racial discrimination have responded since the high court decision, which essentially invalidated Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. That section required certain jurisdictions with a history of chronic racial discrimination in voting to submit all proposed voting changes to the U.S. Department of Justice for a federal court in Washington, D.C. for pre-approval…In 2014, Florida’s Governor sought to reinstitute a purge of purported non-citizens from the state voter database, as he attempted to do in 2012…The Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigated allegations that an appointed white city clerk in Sopchoppy...suppressed Black voters in a June 2013 election by questioning their residencies with no reasonable basis…In Jacksonville…the Board of Elections in 2013 relocated a polling place that served large numbers of Black voters in the City to a less accessible area…In 2013, Hernando County adopted a plan to close and consolidate voting locations, with a focus on the neighborhoods of the City of Brooksville.” Read ‘Democracy Diminished’ report outlines potential threats to voting in Florida

    Rosalie Chan reports for TIME – “Researchers in Iceland found a new way of tackling climate change by pumping carbon dioxide underground and turning it into stone. Other carbon capture and storage (CCS) methods store CO2 as a gas, but problems include a high cost and concern about leakage. This new method…is cheaper and more secure…Already, the project in Iceland has been increased in scale to buy 10,000 tons of CO2 each year. One potential difficulty is that for each ton of CO2 buried, the technique requires 25 tons of water. However, Juerg Matter of the University of Southampton in the U.K., who led the research, said seawater could be used.” Read Researchers Turn CO2 Into Stone in Climate Change Breakthrough

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 20, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Monday, June 20th, 2016 @ 10:10am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 20, 2016

     

    Janelle Irwin reports for the Tampa Bay Business Journal – “The group 1,000 Friends of Florida is joining the growing list of organizations and businesses rejecting the Tampa Bay Express transportation plan being considered next week. The statewide nonprofit, aimed at building better communities and saving special places, emailed a letter to the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization…cautioning the group against adding the plan to its list of annual transportation priorities. The letter…lays out three areas of concern: harm to existing neighborhoods, facilitation of sprawl and ineffective reductions to traffic congestion.” Read Statewide nonprofit asks officials to reject TBX transportation plan

    Kate Kowsh reports for The West Volusia Beacon – “Looking to gain more insight from the public on whether to hold another bear hunt, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission…released a…survey…Although FWC staff has already recommended a ‘more conservative and accountable hunt beginning in 2016,’ they say they will also take into account survey results before making a decision…Take the bear-hunt survey here.” Read Bear-hunt survey released for public’s input

    Bruce Ritchie reports for Politico Florida – “A state council [considered] whether to further study five new proposals to conserve more than 62,000 acres across the state… ‘We really must keep up with…constant growth with continued conservation,’ Cornell (Southwest Florida policy associate with Audubon Florida) said. ‘We need to finish the conservation already on the books.’ Among the proposals…is a conservation easement on 37,495 acres, much of it owned by the Weyerhaeuser Co., in eastern Alachua County. The county…voted down the company’s proposal to develop on 3,380 acres because of environmental concerns…Tim Jackson, a director within…Weyerhaeuser, said the company would consider an exchange of land for conservation as part of a larger deal involving a land swap for property with the county to develop a jobs center…In eastern Franklin County, the state [considered] the purchase of 17,042 acres along Ochlockonee Bay…The Ashleys…said…development along the Ochlockonee Bay would destroy habitat for black bears and other wildlife…Don Ashley told POLITICO…that the purchase would provide a conservation link between Bald Point State Park and Tate’s Hell State Forest…In Lee County, the state [considered] the purchase of 2,841 acres of farmland adjacent to Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuarty. Earlier this year, Gov. Rick Scott remarked during a Cabinet meeting on a visitor who recorded her encounter with Florida panther on a boardwalk in the…sanctuary, operated by Audubon.” Read Study proposed for large Alachua, Franklin conservation land buys

    The Gainesville Sun writes – “Even as Tropical Storm Colin bore down on our region this week, sprinklers could be seen watering lawns in the Gainesville area…Wasteful lawn watering might not be the biggest misuse of water…but it can be the most frustrating. The Alachua County Commission has taken aim at the problem with new irrigation rules. The new rules…cover new or substantially renovated irrigation systems on homes and businesses in the unincorporated county…Of course, some homes in the unincorporated county use wells that mean they pay for just the electric costs of running their pump rather than municipal water bills. That shows the need for additional measures that encourage water conservation in Florida…” Read Saving water and ultimately money

    Lauren Ritchie writes for the Orlando Sentinel – “Vicious fliers about Lake County Commissioner Jimmy Conner, fabricated and paid for by an unknown source, have been dropping into the mailboxes of voters, and more are expected from the cowards as election season heats up. Theoretically, residents ought to be able to learn the identity of the political heavy hitter behind the mailers. Theoretically. But thanks to lame campaign laws and enforcement that is focused on bureaucratic detail rather than the spirit of the statue, the cowards who mailed these…fliers are getting away with dumping tens of thousands of dollars anonymously into a local race…Conner was the deciding vote in a 3-2 split to deny Cemex permission to mine sand…The laws governing campaign finance in Florida need a tweak. No PAC should be able to contribute to another.” Read Whoever’s behind the Conner attacks should ‘fess up

    Jenny Staletovich reports for the Miami Herald – “ ‘Because we had so much rain, it should have been plenty of water to provide to the bay, but it just points again to the fact that the infrastructure is not there,’ said Audubon Florida biologist Jerry Lorenz. ‘It points to the inability of the Water Management District infrastructure to supply Florida Bay with its needed water supply.’” Read Florida Bay seagrass die-off sets stage for spiraling problems

    Kimberly Mitchell writes for the Naples Daily News – “[A]ccording to a 2012 report by RTI International, commissioned by The Everglades Foundation, about 76 percent of the phosphorus entering and polluting the Everglades is from agriculture, including sugar production. Meanwhile, only 24 percent of phosphorus cleanup costs are paid by agriculture- sugar producers included.” Read Everglades protection must prevail against sugar industry

    Jenna Buzzacco-Foerster reports for Florida Politics – “U.S. Sugar officials are pushing back after a guest editorial…said sugar producers are part of the reason why efforts to build reservoirs south of Lake Okeechobee have been postponed…Malcolm “Bubba” Wade, Jr., the senior vice president for corporate strategy and business development for U.S. Sugar [said,] ‘ We have and continue to support the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP)…’… ‘What we have said is that state scientists will not know how much additional storage will be needed until currently planned projects are built and operating…[T]he fact is, there are already 120,000 acres of formerly productive farmland that are now in public ownership for water storage and restoration efforts, and the use of these lands has not been maximized by the government yet.’…Draper (executive director of Audubon Florida) said environmental groups, like Audubon Florida, are just trying to encourage the South Florida Water Management District to begin planning storage projects south of Lake Okeechobee. The planning process would be the first step in a years long process, but Draper said agencies have said they don’t plan to begin planning until 2020.” Read U.S. Sugar pushes back over claims cane industry is to blame for postponed water projects

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

    August 6, 5:30 pm – Attend Grasssroots Summit to Stop Sabal Trail in Gainesville. Speakers will educate participants on the pipeline. For more information, click here.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 17, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Friday, June 17th, 2016 @ 11:52am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 17, 2016

     

    Peter Schorsch reports for Florida Politics – “Aliese “Liesa” Priddy, vice chair of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, was today unanimously cleared by the Florida Commission on Ethics of all conflict of interest complaints filed by three Floridians.” Read FWC commissioner cleared of all conflict of interest complaints by Florida ethics commission

    Teresa Stepzinski reports for The Florida Times Union – “Bear sightings aren’t science. They shouldn’t be used to determine whether Florida has too many bears, or to justify another hunt, said Kate MacFall, Florida state director for the Humane Society of the United States, which opposes the bear hunt. ‘…We as humans, our population, is growing and we are encroaching on bear habitat,’ MacFall said. ‘As we encroach on their habitat and remove some of their natural food sources, and build new developments and put out trash, which is like a buffet, we’ll see more of them.’…Parker (a spokeswoman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission) [noted] bears have been found just about everywhere in Florida over the years, including metropolitan areas…Meanwhile, bear hunt opponents plan a series of public rallies in several cities statewide leading up to commission” Read Bears roaming neighborhoods fuel hunt controversy as decision could come later this month

    Jeff Gill reports for The Gainesville Times – “A trial over Florida allegations that Georgia is drinking up too much of shared water is being eyed for October or November. The two states say they’re actively engaged in mediation, but just in case those efforts hit a wall, parties are rounding up witnesses and otherwise preparing for the trial, which would take place in Washington, D.C.” Read ‘Water Wars’ trial between Georgia, Florida being considered for fall

    Monivette Cordeiro reports for Orlando Weekly – “Zembower, representing the Lake Pickett Woods Homeowners Assocation…says he’s been fighting to keep the area rural for about 25 years and realized that whether he was on board or not, the area would be developed. He and a group of neighbors talked with Saathoff, the developer for the Grow. Saathoff was willing to discuss keeping the area rural, increasing buffers and reducing the density. Zembower says Saathoff agreed to a rare covenant and deed restriction on the project that goes with the land. Sustany declined to negotiate a similar agreement, he says.” Read East Orange County residents protest two housing developments near the Econlockhatchee River

    Madison Fantozzi reports for The Ledger - “[I]n the last decade or so, utilities departments have transitioned from flat rates to tiered structures – charging heavier water users more per gallon in an effort to decrease their usage. Data collected from Polk County, Lakeland, Winter Haven and Lake Wales show the tiered structures have done just that.” Read Water rates ‘significant’ in lowering usage

    Thomas St. Myer reports for the Pensalcola News Journal – “An Escambia County Circuit Court judge…ruled in favor of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and Escambia County in its motion for permanent injunctive relief and for assessment of civil penalties against South Palafox Properties…The Circuit Court ordered that South Palafox perform remediation of the groundwater contamination at Rolling Hills landfill…The County set up air monitors at Rolling Hills that showed elevated levels of hydrogen sulfide.” Read Judge rules on Rolling Hills landfill case

    Anne Lindberg reports for Saint Peters Blog – “Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority CEO Brad Miller has proposed buying five new buses to replace worn out buses in the system’s fleet…Under Miller’s proposal, the five new buses would be diesel unless funding is found to install charging stations. In that case,…three of the buses would be diesel, and two would be electric…But, the PSTA planning committee…nixed the idea. Members…said the new buses should be hybrids and, if funding is found for charging stations, then the PSTA should buy three hybrids and two electrics. Pinellas County Commissioner Ken Welch, who serves on the planning committee, said his group was concerned about the emissions from diesel buses. Hybrids, he said, have fewer emissions and that, for a county that’s facing the rise of sea water and other challenges from climate change, should be a major factor in decision making.” Read Ken Welch is ‘fairly optimistic’ electric buses will be in St. Pete next year

    Scott Powers reports for Florida Politics – “Clean Water Action has endorsed Democrat Susannah Randolph’s bid for Florida’s 9th Congressional District…” Read Environmental group Clean Water Action endorses Susannah Randolph in CD 9 race

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 16, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Thursday, June 16th, 2016 @ 11:54am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 16, 2016

     

    Ed Killer writes for the TC Palm – “An infamous milestone has been reached…The cumulative volume of water being discharged this year from Lake Okeechobee into the St. Lucie River…and the Atlantic Ocean at St. Lucie Inlet has surpassed the entire volume of water that was discharged in 2013. In 2013, 136.1 billion gallons of dirty water poured forth over 166 days…So far, in a mere 138 days…that much and more has damagingly entered the frail estuary. And the end date for the deluge to stop is, well, yet to be determined…This year…is WORSE than 2013, a discharge event so terrible that it was branded “The Lost Summer.”…Buy land from whomever owns it…Make the water go south again.” Read 2016’s discharges have surpassed the ‘Lost Summer’ of 2013

    Charlotte Nycklemoe and Judith Hushon write for the Naples Daily News – “Recently, nine landowners in eastern Collier County’s Rural Land Stewardship Area (RLSA) submitted a draft multispecies Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to support the landowner’s request for an incidental take permit under the Endangered Species Act…In preparing the HCP, the landowners assembled a team of panther experts to evaluate their plan for the RLSA and to recommend how to best protect the panther. The Panther Review Team recommended: 1- Preserve adequate corridors to allow panthers to move…3 – Direct development away from panther primary zone- an area essential for long-term viability of the panther…4 – Restore or enhance habitat in the primary zone and secure additional lands in the secondary zone when impacts are unavoidable. 5- Avoid construction of new roads and the widening of existing roads in all panther habitat…Existing roads should be retrofitted with crossings…These recommendations are entirely ignored in the HCP, which doesn’t identify where development should be allowed or disallowed, exact locations of panther corridors, or that development should be clustered to avoid fragmentation of habitats…[T]he landowners seek an incidental take permit for 50 years. This HCP does not call for regular and periodic re-evaluation of the health of the threatened and endangered species populations as development occurs so changes can be initiated and development-caused problems remedied. This HCP therefore does not protect or conserve these species, but rather does the opposite.” Read When conservation planning goes awry, species in danger

    Kate MacFall writes for the Orlando Sentinel – “On June 22, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will discuss whether to open another Florida black bear hunt. It was a bad idea last year, and it’s a bad idea this year…[S]cientists make the serious point that the state doesn’t have the information it needs to responsibly hold a black bear hunt without potentially harming the populations…Wildlife officials acknowledge that the scientific research shows-that bear hunting will not help reduce bear-human conflicts…A 2015 statewide Remington Research poll found that nearly two-thirds of Floridians oppose bear hunting. According to the poll, Floridians overwhelmingly favor educational outreach (84 percent) and bear-proof garbage cans (81 percent), and 87 percent of those polled agreed that neighborhoods located near areas where bears occur have a responsibility to avoid attracting bears by securing their garbage and other food…Allowing the hunt to continue as it did in 2015, coupled with roadkill numbers, the killing of nuisance bears and poaching, ‘may well plunge multiple subpopulations into sharp decline,’ the scientists warn.” Read Another bear hunt? No plausible reason for it, says Florida Humane Society

    The TC Palm Editorial Board writes – “The DEP is updating its standards for what is known as the Human Health Criteria, designed to limit exposures to toxins through drinking water or consumption of fish or shellfish…The proposed new standards could go before the Florida Environmental Regulation Commission as soon as this fall. In 2013, the seven-member board tabled a previous DEP attempt to revise its Human Health Criteria. Until DEP makes a convincing case, the commission would be wise to do the same this time around. Just because we can discharge more toxins doesn’t mean we should. Aren’t our waterways polluted enough?” Read Why do we need more chemicals in the water?

    Sam Fields writes for the Miami Herald – “The May 29 letter that supports Amendment 1 on the November ballot was from Keven Doyle, the executive director of the so-called Consumer Energy Alliance-Florida. This isn’t a Florida consumer group, but an oil industry group out of Houston…Three Florida Supreme Court justices unsuccessfully voted to keep Amendment 1 off the ballot because it is misleading…The thousands of home solar systems have not cost FPL customers one thin dime. To the contrary, we have saved them tens of millions. In November, vote No on Amendment 1.” Read Vote No on misleading Amendment 1 on ballot

    Mike Holliday writes for the TC Palm – “We know the water that flows into Lake Okeechobee needs to flow into the Everglades Agricultural Area…We know cancer, Alzheimer’s and a host of other diseases have environmental triggers. So why doesn’t the water flow south through the EAA? Two reasons: opposition from Big Sugar and the politicians who take their campaign donations in exchange for their vote…Florida’s marine environments are being systematically killed off in the name of short-term profit to the sugar farms that reside in the EAA. Our politicians are bought and paid for by the sugar lobbies and Big Sugar’s reluctance to help with the problem, to share in the costs, to sacrifice a token of their total acreage for the good of mankind is the only thing standing in the way of a solution…Land acquisition in the EAA needs to be a top priority. Hopefully, the owners of that land will understand the destruction, see the value of our ecosystems and be willing sellers. If not, we need to take the land through eminent domain…When you consider that Big Sugar wouldn’t exist without government supports, it’s more like a payment due on a loan rather than eminent domain.” Read How to end the cycle of destruction in our estuaries

    Fox 4 reports – “John Heim, who heads the Southwest Florida Clean Water Movement, was in a Lee County hospital…He said he checked himself in after being sickened by algae.” Read Clean water activist hospitalized

    Mary Ellen Klas reports for the Miami Herald – “The liberal advocacy group, Americans United for Change, is out with a new report highlighting the financial ties between Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, and other Republican attorneys general, and the oil, gas and utilities industries as they fight to block enforcement of the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan.” Read Group highlights financial ties between Pam Bondi and opponents of the Clean Power Plan

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 16, 6:00 pm – Attend the Friends of Lullwater Lake Monthly Meeting at 235 Lullwater Drive.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 15, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Wednesday, June 15th, 2016 @ 11:51am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 15, 2016

     

    Dinah Voyles Pulver reports for The Daytona Beach News Journal – “A controversial plan by the city of DeBary to put 102 acres of conservation land into a 300-acre transit-related development around the SunRail station appeared to come to an end…The St. Johns River Water Management District’s governing board voted 7 to 0 to transfer ownership of the 947-acre Gemini Springs Addition conservation area to Volusia County, including the 102 acres the city wanted. The agreement stipulates the property must remain in conservation and undeveloped and that the transfer first must be approved by state and federal officials…Speaking during a public comment period…Karen Chadwick with the Putnam County Environmental Council asked Miklos to resign.” Read Water district board Oks transfer of DeBary conservation land to county

    Mary Ellen Klas reports for the Miami Herald – “[The Florida Wildlife Federation, the St. Johns Riverkeeper, the Sierra Club, and the Environmental Confederation of Southwest Florida]…asked a court to accelerate its ruling in a lawsuit accusing the Florida Legislature of violating the state Constitution and misdirecting Amendment 1 environmental funds into salaries and inappropriate operating expenses. The groups…are asking a court to transfer $299 million [from] general revenue…and restore the money in the Land Acquisition Trust Fund… ‘It’s a wound that won’t heal because it was such a breach of faith with Florida voters,’ said David Guest, attorney for the environmental groups.” Read Environmental groups return to court over Legislature’s diverting Amendment 1 money

    Bruce Ritchie reports for Politico Florida – “Three biologists with experience in studying wildlife populations are urging the state to put off another bear hunt so more population studies can be conducted and bear sanctuaries can be established… ‘We are trying to help,’ Aresco, who has a doctorate in biology from FSU, told POLITCO Florida. ‘The purpose of this letter is to try to help the agency and guide the agency in making the right management decisions. So far, they have been resistant to that.’…Aresco said the scientists don’t object to the idea of hunting, but that the proposal to move forward with another hunt now is based on ‘very limited science.’ He said the scientists met with agency officials in January but they said doing the kinds of studies that are suggested in the letter are too expensive. ‘Knowing the number of bears in a population doesn’t tell you whether they can be hunted sustainably or what numbers can be taken out and still have a stable population,’ Aresco said. ‘They haven’t done that.’” Read Biologists call for bear sanctuaries and studies rather than another hunt

    Scott Williamson writes for the Tallahassee Democrat – “I am a hunter and conservationist, and my dad, Ben Williamson, served with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for over 30 years…The Sunshine State is growing at an alarming pace and Florida’s black bears- and all Florida wildlife- are facing significant habitat loss…How can FWC claim a successful hunt when clearly lactating bears, baited bears, and under-weight bears were all harvested in last year’s mismanaged hunt?...In a letter dated June 4, three wildlife biologists advised the commission to postpone further bear hunting. They stressed the need for better, more detailed studies on the stability of bear populations and the need for better habitat connections between bear subpopulations. I have spoken to friends in the hunting community and they too oppose another bear hunt in 2015…I do support better management at the city/county level as well as the state level – management that involves education…trash management and true wildlife conservation. It seems like focusing on trash management- and actually addressing human/bear conflicts- would be a better use of taxpayer resources.” Read Local hunter opposes another bear hunt

    April Warren reports for The Gainesville Sun – “The Alachua County Commission made its feelings clear on Tuesday – don’t hunt bears on our lands…Six Florida counties have passed similar resolutions in advance of the meeting including Volusia, Seminole and Hillsborough counties…[M]ore bears are being euthanized because FWC is now required to euthanize a nuisance bear the first time it is caught. Previously, FWC had to capture a nuisance bear, tag it and relocate it up to three times before it was euthanized.” Read Alachua County against hunting bears on its land

    Susan Davis writes for the Sun Sentinel – “The Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge…is the only remnant of the Everglades left in Palm Beach County. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service does an admirable job managing the refuge – also known as Water Conservation 1—through a 50-year lease agreement with the landowner, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD). Unfortunately, the [SFWMD] now wants to take management of the refuge away from the service. The mission of the National Wildlife Refuge system is to promote the conservation and restoration of wildlife with an emphasis on public outreach and education. If we lose management of the Loxahatchee refuge to the state, this area will go back to being a water conservation area…More than 300,000 people visit the refuge each year…Thanks to its excellent wildlife viewing opportunities, our Audubon Society hosts 11 field trips to the refuge each year…No one benefits from losing a National Wildlife Refuge; not the public and certainly not the state. In this time of dwindling resources, partnerships and collaboration among agencies is the key to doing more with less.” Read Don’t take away our refuge

    Brady Dennis reports for The Washington Post – “The Supreme Court…left intact a key Obama administration environmental regulation, refusing to take up an appeal from 20 states to block rules that limit the emissions of mercury and other harmful pollutants that are byproducts of coal.” Read Supreme Court rejects case challenging key White House air pollution regulation

    Gary Lytton writes for the Naples Daily News – “Coral bleaching was evident in many of the shallow reefs, a condition created when living corals expel algae, microscopic plants that, under normal circumstances, live in a symbiotic relationship with corals and help create the thriving underwater rainforest that we recognize as a healthy coral reef…As our oceans warm, we are losing living coral reefs across the planet at alarming rates…If we care…[we should] ask our elected officials in Florida to engage on this issue, and begin the critical task of planning for a future that takes into consideration what we are already seeing today. For all of us living in Southwest Florida, it’s not just about tourism and seafood. It’s about sustaining our quality of life, adapting to living on a changing coastline, and taking steps now to help ensure that our children, and their children, will not have to read on the Internet about coral reefs and what they used to look like.” Read Florida’s imperiled coral reefs reflect a global issue

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 16, 6:00 pm – Attend the Friends of Lullwater Lake Monthly Meeting at 235 Lullwater Drive.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com 

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 14, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Tuesday, June 14th, 2016 @ 9:05am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 14, 2016

     

    Susan Salisbury reports for the Palm Beach Post – “Deficient. That’s what a three-judge panel called a 2014 U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff environmental report on Florida Power & Light’s Turkey Point nuclear plant…But there’s no need for a do-over, the judges said…[T]he judges wrote that the NRC staff will not need to revise the environmental assessment because evidence developed in the proceeding held in Homestead in January identified the deficiencies. ‘This Initial Decision supplements the 2014 EA and thereby satisfies the NEPA obligation to take the requisite “hard look” and also justifies the finding of no significant environmental impact,’ the judges wrote…CASE’s (Citizens Allied for Safe Energy’s) president Barry White, said, ‘They say we made all of our points, but it leads to no action or change. Is this the way the NRC does things?...It really shows how powerless we are against a system where government supports big business,’ White said.” Read NRC Turkey Point environmental report was deficient, judges say, but…

    The News Press Editorial Board writes – “Recently, members of The News-Press were able to take an aerial tour of various state and federal water projects through south and central Florida. The water projects are critical to maintaining the integrity of the Everglades…[T]his was about collecting information, to view first-hand what was happening and to connect what we have written and what we hear from hundreds of people each day about the state of our water.” Read View of Florida’s water from 1,000 feet

    Monivette Cordeiro writes for Orlando Weekly – “Surprise! The National Rifle Association and the Unified Sportsmen of Florida have come out in a letter supporting Florida’s black bear hunt and asking that it be expanded. Marion Hammer, an NRA lobbyist, distributed the letter…to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission…The full letter, which the Tampa Bay Times put online, makes it sound like bears are roaming the streets of Florida while terrified people watch from inside their houses.” Read NRA wants Florida to continue, expand black bear hunt

    Sandra McClinton writes for News-Press – “Fracking is a danger to the state’s delicate ecosystem and shallow, interconnected underground waterways. It could increase global warming by releasing methane gas…and hurt property values and tourism business…I’ve bookmarked a great website ‘https://votesmart.org/candidate/’; that tracks how elected officials vote on bills…It is expected that pro-fracking measures will come up again next session, so it is up to you to contact the Lee Delegation and let them know you are going to hold them accountable. Ask them to totally ban fracking in Florida.” Read Totally ban fracking in Florida

    Cain Burdeau reports for the Associated Press – “Far offshore and a mile deep in the dark world below the Gulf of Mexico’s gleaming surface, the catastrophic BP oil spill of 2010 did untold damage on the ocean floor. But scientists are unsure they can do much to heal places in the deep that were hurt the most as they undertake what’s being called the largest ecosystem restoration effort ever…[D]eep-sea restoration has never been attempted, scientists said…BP’s out-of-control deep well spat oil for 87 days…Much of it never reached the surface… ‘The more we learn about the deep-sea, the more we learn about the connections between shallow waters and the deep water. Changes in the deep-sea have repercussions for the wider Gulf,’ Cordes (a Temple University coral expert who has studied the corals damaged by the spill and worked on the government’s restoration plans) said. ‘But the scary part is that we don’t know what the repercussions may be.’” Read Uncharted waters: Restoring the deep Gulf of Mexico fouled by BP’s Deepwater Horizon spill

    Scott Maxwell writes for the Orlando Sentinel – “As things go from bad to worse in DeBary…there is also growing pressure and attention on conflicts of interest with John Miklos, the chairman of the St. Johns Water Management District…[E]xperts like Estus Whitfield- co-founder of the Florida Conservation Coalition- told the News-Journal that Miklos’s conflicts seem like ‘the worst case I remember, and I’ve been around since 1970.’…A spokeswoman for Scott said that, if someone believes there’s a conflict, they should file a complaint. Well, consider it done. Government watchdog and legislative candidate Don Mair of Volusia County has filed a complaint with the state ethics commission…I previously said Miklos should either resign or end all his conflicts…I’m now, however, convinced he’s just in too deep. He needs to go…[I]t will be interesting to see what State Attorney R.J. Larizza…finds…[P]ay close attention to Florida Statue 112.313- which has a section that says: ‘No public officer or employee of an agency shall…hold any employment or contractual relationship that will create a…frequently recurring conflict between his…private interests and the performance of his…public duties…’” Read Ethics complaint, DeBary investigation amp up pressure on water-board chairman Miklos

    Melissa Nelson Gabriel reports for the Pensacola News Journal – “The endangered and reclusive [Perdido Key mice] live in the sand dunes and natural vegetation of the beach. ‘They are little engineers of the dunes…They disperse seed for sea oats…,’ said Kristi Yanchis, a biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Unlike some other mouse species, the Perdido Key mice mate for life. The mice stick close to home, avoid human contact and do not forage for food in trash….Since the species was listed as endangered in 1985, government agencies have spent millions on their protection, doing everything from creating tunnels under roadways for the mice to safely cross to setting aside dozens of acres for mouse habitat…McGehee estimated that she has spent at least $11,000 in mouse-related fees to build her beachfront home… ‘My husband has joked that maybe this is a good thing because it means we won’t have a lot of new development out here any time soon,’ she laughed.” Read Tiny Perdido Key Beach Mouse a big problem for developers

    Jordan Fisher Smith reports for TIME – “What Martin and Lee-Roney do in the course of managing a national park is still pretty hands-on, but with growing reliance on technology in the natural sciences, particularly in research, something big has happened to the old-time naturalist with his binoculars, notebook and broad-based knowledge of the names and habits of plants and animals: he’s all but extinct.” Read How Technology Affects Our Relationship with Nature

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 16, 6:00 pm – Attend the Friends of Lullwater Lake Monthly Meeting at 235 Lullwater Drive.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 13, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Monday, June 13th, 2016 @ 10:42am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 13, 2016

     

    Kevin Spear, Steve Hudak, and Martin E. Comas report for the Orlando Sentinel – “The eastern outskirts of Osceola, Orange and Seminole counties are Central Florida’s last frontier. The region, a mosaic of wild pasture, pine savanna, cypress swamp and retiree ranchettes, has been set apart from suburbia by a boundary established a quarter century ago that was designed to block growth from crossing the Econolockhatchee River. Many fear a flood of new homes that would spoil Seminole’s rural enclave,…leave Orange with crowded roads and plague the eastern span of Central Florida with water conflicts and spoiled environments. A key decision will come Tuesday (tomorrow) when Orange commissioners consider a pair of mega-developments that opponents say could spawn even more projects across the river’s protection zone.” Read East of Econ: The Story of land development on Central Florida’s final frontier

    Craig Pittman reports for the Tampa Bay Times – “Biologists for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission are recommending their bosses approve a second bear hunt, but one that is more limited in scope than what took place last fall. The commission meets June 22 in Apalachicola...For the upcoming meeting, FWC biologists are offering four options for the commissioners…Options include a repeat of last year’s hunt, banning all bear hunting or taking a break until 2017 to spend more time educating the public and managing garbage cans, which can lure bears into populated areas…The commission approved [last year’s] hunt after a series of four bear attacks on women…However, the commission staff acknowledged that scientific studies indicated a hunt would not curb future attacks.” Read Despite controversy, Florida wildlife officials recommend second bear hunt

    Jeff Burlew reports for the Tallahassee Democrat – “U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham…wrote Jon Steverson, secretary of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, voicing her ‘strong opposition’ to proposed new (water quality) standards and urging the agency to reconsider them… ‘I find it inconceivable that the department charged with protecting our environment would ease restrictions on dangerous chemicals that threaten the health of Florida’s waters and the people and industries that rely on them,’ she said in her letter to DEP. ‘We should be doing all we can to protect our most valuable asset, not make it easier to pollute.” Read Graham urges DEP to rethink water pollution limits

    Ray Judah writes for News Press – “Wade suggests that the (EAA), including 440,000 acres of surgarcane fields, south of Lake Okeechobee, is treated the same as other agricultural interests in the South Florida Water Management District’s jurisdictional boundaries. Nothing could be further from the truth, as the EAA enjoys tremendous leniency due to “grandfathered” surface water management systems and extended land leases. To prevent flooding in the EAA, the South Florida Water Management District manages ground water levels at 18 to 24 inches below grade, regardless of seasonal fluctuations, to provide optimum growing conditions for sugarcane to the detriment of the south Florida ecosystem. Government-owned Water Conservation Areas (WCA) south of the EAA are used extensively by the sugar industry for water storage and treatment, effectively displacing any potential storage for water from Lake Okeechobee. The EAA should be expected to provide storage for storm water runoff on their own property as is required for all other permitted developments instead of exploiting publicly owned lands.” Read Getting the water right should be priority

    David Fleshler reports for the Sun Sentinel – “After generating an uproar last summer over plans to drill for oil in the Everglades…the Kanter family of Miami has submitted paperwork for state permits that could result in decisions by late summer or early fall…Environmentalists have denounced the proposal, and city commissions throughout Broward County adopted resolutions in opposition. Members of the Broward County Commission, from which the family would need to obtain a zoning change, have said they would never support it…The applications are for an exploratory well only.” Read Controversial Everglades oil well plan moving forward

    Carl Hiaasen writes for the St. Augustine Record – “The floodgates are open. Here comes the slime…This is not a cheesy horror movie- it’s true-life horror on Florida’s Treasure Coast…[W]hat is essentially a biblical deluge of fresh water, laced heavily with fertilizer, is pushed straight to Florida’s east and west coasts, which are supposed to be saltwater habitats. The discharges go on day after day, week after week- perhaps the most massive, long-term act of pollution in the country, and it’s committed annually by the government.” Read It’s summer, and here comes the slime

    Lizette Alvarez reports for The New York Times – “Some of the Everglades die-hards trace back to the gritty pioneering Gladesmen who settled in the wilderness and survived off the land, much like the Miccosukees and Seminoles before them. Some of these settlers’ descendants live here still, holding tight to traditional habits and culture…They know what can be eaten (the hearts of saw grass leaves). They know how to read the savanna-like water trails (and not get lost). They even know how to…wrestle [alligators] down (at least some do)…They view themselves as stewards of the park, and say they will fight the law (phasing out private airboat use) as long as commercial airboats, which they argue are much larger and more damaging to the park, are allowed to remain.” Read In a Corner of the Everglades, a Way of Life Ebbs

    Fred Grimm writes for the Miami Herald – “So, according to Levine’s view of modern journalism, newspapers (or at least the Miami Herald) invent disgusting stories about Miami Beach, because Miami Beach is so sexy. We fashioned a mendacious hit piece just to glom onto Miami Beach’s worldwide fame…Apparently, the Herald conspired with researchers from Florida International University, the National Oceanic and atmospheric Administration, the University of Miami and Nova Southeastern University to conjure up the notion that when Miami Beach’s new water pumps flush away tidal floodwater during king tides, the fecal bacteria count spikes to more than 600 times the acceptable limits.” Read The stink Beach mayor smells isn’t a conspiracy, it’s fecal runoff

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 4:00 pm - Attend Green Hands Sustainability Fest at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Enjoy live music, food trucks, non-profit outreach, and kids’ activities. At 8:30 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    June 26, 4:00 pm – Attend Green Hands Sustainability Soiree at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall. There will be a wine and cheese reception and live music from Chelsea Saddler. At 6:00 pm, the documentary “Tapped” will be screened. This documentary discusses the economic and environmental impact of the bottled water industry.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at .

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 10, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Friday, June 10th, 2016 @ 11:44am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 10, 2016

     

    Tracy McManus reports for the Tampa Bay Times – “Pinellas County…became the first government in Tampa Bay and the 11th county in the state to ban hydraulic fracturing. The County Commission unanimously passed the ban, which also sets fine for violators, three months after a state bill that would have regulated fracking and prevented municipalities from prohibiting it failed in the Legislature. ‘This certainly makes a statement,’ Commissioner Dave Eggers said, ‘and it’s really set up to protect our water sources.’…Pinellas County joins 10 other counties…and three cities…to ban the practice outright.” Read Pinellas County bans fracking

    Neville Williams writes for the Tallahassee Democrat – “If you are pro-solar power…then vote ‘no’ on solar amendment No. 1 in November. It is a devious move by Florida’s regulated power monopolies to pocket future profits from solar power and prevent competitors from providing low-cost solar electricity to homeowners and businesses, as they are doing in 46 other states.” Read Support solar? Vote ‘no’ on Amendment 1

    The Gainesville Sun Editorial Board writes – “Few issues stirred the emotions of Floridians last year more than the state-sanctioned bear hunt…Now, maybe the only thing more unpopular than last year’s hunt is a second hunt state wildlife managers are considering for this year. So far, it appears Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission staff members and board members are leaning toward holding another hunt….[T]here were numerous problems with last year’s hunt that need to be corrected before another hunt is held. There also is growing and substantive opposition to continuing the hunt, at least until the FWC has a better bear management plan, better bear habitat and better enforcement…Last week, three noted scientists issued a paper calling for the FWC to postpone future hunts until better population analyses is done, better ‘connectivity’ is developed between bear sub-populations and the state establishes ‘a system of bear sanctuaries.’” Read Put brakes on second bear hunt

    Eric Draper writes for the TC Palm - “Let’s move past the delay and get together on a plan for storage and a southern outlet. The plan should be guided by two laws: The Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan and the Legacy Florida Act…The CERP EAA Reservoir plan calls for 460,000-acre-feet of storage south of Lake Okeechobee, which alone could store up to eight inches of Lake Okeechobee water. The Legacy Florida Act requires that preference for Amendment 1 funds be given to projects that reduce discharges to the estuaries.” Read Planning delay at state level bodes ill for Treasure Coast’s water problems

    Scott Maxwell writes for the Orlando Sentinel – “You wouldn’t want to drink too much benzene or swim in too much tetrachloroethylene. Benzene, after all, can lead to leukemia. And tetrachloroethylene has been linked to bladder cancer…Gov. Rick Scott’s environmental division has proposed increasing the levels of some carcinogens allowed in state waters…The amount of benzene allowed in the state’s pre-treated supply of drinking waters would more than double. The amount of tetrachloroethylene (PCE) allowed in recreational waters would go up by about 650 percent…[W]e have the state, which has had a shoddy environmental record, saying things are A-OK, and environmentalists saying this is dangerous. I went searching for expert advice and concluded things may not be quite as dire as they sound- but that there’s still reason for concern…If the governor wants to instill public confidence, he’ll…appoint an environmentalist to the board- one respected by other environmentalists….And the state will propose only levels that are well within the EPA’s recommended safety guidelines.” Read Florida wants to allow more carcinogens in your water

    Jacqueline Ronson writes for Inverse – “We have two choices- we could move back (away from the shoreline) now, and respond…in a planned fashion…Or we can respond (to sea level rise and climate change) in response to catastrophes- that is, big storms. And that’s what I think will happen.” Read The case for Abandoning Miami and the Rich Fools Building Mansions on the Beach

    Jenny Staletovich reports for the Miami Herald – “Miami Beach city leaders – smarting over a study that found water gushing from massive new pumps during king tides over the past two years carried bacteria from human waste-…grilled the team of scientists who authored the report…Some scientists worry the city’s response could have a chilling effect on researchers…. ‘They have such a serious problem and I understand that no elected official wants this as their prime focus. They all have other dreams for our community. But this is the reality that we have to deal with openly and honestly,’ said University of Miami geologist Harold Wanless…Scientists say the bay waters are safe now because pollution concentrations dilute quickly. But the impact could be a growing concern when Miami Beach adds dozens more pumps or, further in the future, when other coastal cities build similar systems.” Read Miami Beach attacks ‘sloppy science’ on human waste bacteria in bay

    Jac Versteeg writes for Florida Politics – “A politician is a guy who shoots you in the gut and then campaigns by bragging about the Band-Aid he put on the wound. The latest example: Just days after The Palm Beach Post’s John Kennedy documented how Gov. Rick Scott’s environmental policies had led to an explosion of huge developments in Palm Beach County and across the state, Scott showed up in the county to tout his environmental achievements.” Read Rick Scott Puts Band-Aid on Environmental Wounds

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com.

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 9, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Thursday, June 9th, 2016 @ 8:56am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 9, 2016

     

    Dinah Voyles Pulver reports for The Daytona Beach News-Journal – “Volusia County Council members voted unanimously…to oppose the city of DeBary’s controversial development proposal for 102 acres of conservation land near Gemini Springs. The…resolution…stated in part: ‘utilizing any portion of the Gemini Springs Addition to support development or redevelopment is contrary to the stated mitigation purpose of the property.’ The resolution also restated the county’s intent to accept ownership of the entire 944-acre Gemini Springs Addition conservation area from the St. Johns River Water Management District…[S]peakers supported the county’s resolution…including Charles and Saundra Gray, who sold the land to the county for Gemini Springs Park… ‘I will sit much more comfortably when this land is transferred to Volusia County,’ said Saundra Gray, a former water district board member…Environmental groups across the state have expressed concern about the possible precedent that could be created by the water district authorizing the use of publicly owned conservation land for private development.” Read Volusia council approves resolution opposing DeBary land deal

    Dinah Voyles Pulver reports for The Daytona Beach News-Journal – “Sierra Club Florida is asking a federal prosecutor to investigate a proposed land deal by the city of DeBary and its environmental consultant that club officials say has ‘shattered’ public confidence…. ‘The actions by Miklos at the SJRWMD present a classic case of “regulatory capture,” defined as: a form of government failure that occurs when a regulatory agency, created to act in the public interest, instead advances the commercial or political concerns of special interest groups that dominate the industry or sector it is charged with regulating,’ the letter (signed by Linda Carlton, Volusia Flagler Sierra Group chair) stated.” Read Sierra Club seeks federal probe, warns DeBary deal ‘smacks’ of ‘influence peddling’

    Stephen Hudak reports for the Orlando Sentinel – “Florida wildlife biologists want ‘sanctuaries’ established where black bears would be off limits to hunters. In a nine-page letter filled with research citations, the biologists also called on the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission to postpone future hunts until the agency re-evaluates its method to set the number of bears that can be killed in a hunt… ‘Population size and density estimates alone are insufficient metrics for setting harvest objectives…’ their letter said, suggesting the agency also examine gender, maturation rates and other characteristics in bear subpopulations.” Read Bears need ‘sanctuaries’ from hunters, biologists say

    Kevin Spear reports for the Orlando Sentinel – “One way to fix the ailing ecosystem of the Indian River…is to dig up residential septic tanks and replace them with sewer service. Such a job is so costly and disruptive that most local governments and neighborhoods want no part of the option…But the city of Rockledge…is months into the job…Rockledge officials know of no examples to draw from…For several years, Orange County sought to extend sewer service to nearly 400 homes near the polluted Wekiwa Springs. The initiative would have included several million dollars contributed by the state, but little progress was made and earlier this year the state money rolled back into a general fund…Rockledge and state officials calculate that removal of septic tanks will stop thousands of pounds of wastewater pollution from seeping underground each year to the Indian River…” Read City takes on septic tank removal

    Dan Tonsmeire writes for Florida Politics – “[T]his year…the Supreme Court and the Corps will set precedent over national policy that could provide clear guidance regarding how historically longstanding and costly decisions between states…over water can be resolved on an equitable basis…These two pending decisions are the last chance to reverse 60 years of water depletion and put the Apalachicola on a track toward recovery. Continuing Georgia’s unfettered water use and Corps management that ignores impacts to the river will result in lost livelihoods and the demise of this last great bay in the Northern Hemisphere. Its loss will be felt all across the nation.” Read Historic Florida, Georgia Water War Decisions Will Impact Entire Nation

    Marrillee Malwitz-Jipson and Jim Tatum write for The Gainesville Sun – “[T]he Federal Regulatory Energy Commission and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, accurately called ‘rubber stamp agencies’ by The Sun, did approve the (Sabal Trail) pipe…The commission’s environmental impact statement was based on Sabal Trail’s input, which was notoriously inaccurate and, we think, intentionally misleading…Sabal Trail owner and operator Spectra Energy has an abysmal safety record. As FloridaBulldog.org reported, ‘From 2006 to date, the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration recorded 25 incidents that caused more than $12 million in property damage along Spectra’s main line.’ Furthermore, Sabal Trail has no viable recourse plan in case of accidents. Its solution to breaking into a sinkhole is to fill it with concrete grout. This ignores the fact that sinkholes are often connected underground, making it difficult or impossible to fill and likely having the undesirable and illegal result of stopping underground water flow to the springs.” Read Sabal Trail pipeline threatens natural resources

    Kate Bradshaw reports for Creative Loafing – “After Tropical Storm Colin brought heavy rains to the Tampa Bay area, the city of St. Pete had a tough but familiar choice to make: let a nasty cocktail of stormwater and sewage tax the city’s waste water infrastructure to the point where it bubbles up out of manholes, or pump some of it out to sea.” Read St. Pete dumps partially treated sewage into Tampa Bay in the wake of Colin

    The Bradenton Times reports – “A proposal to change the status of West Indian manatees from ‘endangered’ to the less concerning ‘threatened’ has been repudiated by several scientists who were invited by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to give peer review to the proposal.” Read Peer Review of Proposal to Downlist Manatees Leads to Opposition by Scientists

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    July 5, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1stAvenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. The July class will focus on springs biology: algae, plants, wildlife. For more information, click here.

    July 25, 7:00 pm – Attend “Why Aren’t Florida’s Water Laws Protecting Florida’s Water?” led by two attorneys, Heather Culp (Associate Director of the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute) and Traci Deen (Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence at Barry University Law School). The event will be held at High Springs New Century Woman’s Club in High Springs and is FREE and open to the public. For more information, call (386) 454- 0415.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at .

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 8, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Wednesday, June 8th, 2016 @ 9:06am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 8, 2016

     

    Fred Grimm writes for the Miami Herald – “Hammer, the well-armed lobbyist for the National Rifle Association and Unified Sportsmen of Florida, fired off a letter to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission…urging the agency ‘to continue and to expand bear hunting season in Florida.’ (‘Urge,’ coming from Hammer, actually means ‘demand.’)…There’s…something bizarre about the NRA- the state’s most powerful gun advocate- railing about the danger to human life posed by black bears…Too bad Floridians won’t be allowed to vote on the issue in this fall’s general election. I’d bet that those scary black bears- the creatures that have so terrorized the NRA- would out-poll every politician on the ballot.” Read NRA urges Florida to declare another war on scary black bears

    Dinah Voyles Pulver reports for The Daytona Beach News-Journal – “Miklos’ company has represented clients in district permitting activities 117 times since he was appointed to the board in 2010…Bio-Tech’s permit activity before the district has more than doubled since Miklos became board chairman in 2013…Miklos also has a network of business connections through the eight corporations registered in Florida where he is an officer or director. His co-director in one of these corporations, Medjool Investments, is Kurt Ardaman, an attorney for the city of DeBary.” Read Bio-Tech business jumped after Miklos named chairman

    Jenna Buzzacco-Foerster reports for Florida Politics – “In a letter to DEP Secretary Jon Steverson, [Lizbeth Benacquisto] urges the agency to work with the South Florida Water Management District and others to modify regulation schedules…Benacquisto said a recent algae bloom in the Caloosahatchee River led Lee County to shut down its water treatment plant. However, she said the DEP’s sampling and reporting ‘was so limited that it found no risk of algae blooms despite contrary evidence.’… ‘Our state needs a Department of Environmental Protection that will strongly respond to releases from Lake Okeechobee,’ she said in her letter…Benacquisto also said the DEP should keep water quality standards ‘as high as possible’ to protect Floridians.” Read Lizbeth Benacquisto Addresses Water Quality Concerns in Letter to DEP

    Ron Cunningham writes for The Gainesville Sun – “Between periodic reports of massive fish kills in the Indian River Lagoon and giant algae blooms on the St. John’s, selling the region’s natural wonders is getting to be a tricky business…Rick Scott is not to blame for Florida’s water woes. We are. We knew what Scott was before we elected him. And his dirty-water legacy was a matter of public record well before we reelected him…Adam Putnam is an odds-on favorite to be Florida’s next governor…Putnam never met a Big Ag-supported dirty water standard he didn’t like. And what about all those legislators who ignored the overwhelming popular mandate to spend more money on land and water conservation? Think they’re worried about losing their jobs for spitting in their constituents’ faces? I keep reading that there are people like me all over Florida…folks who…are fed up…I’ll believe it when I see it. We know who the dirty water politicians are…And in six months we can show a bunch of them the door.” Read Selling Florida’s natural wonders is getting tricky

    Jenny Staletovich reports for the Miami Herald – “The dredging of PortMiami that killed more coral than originally estimated should serve as a warning that the U.S. Corps of Engineers needs to take a closer look at fragile reefs before it deepens Port Everglades, conservations said…[T]he groups – including the Center for Biological Diversity, Miami Waterkeeper, Earthjustice, the Florida Wildlife Federation and Sea Experience- said they would sue in 60 days if no changes are made…[G]roups warned that the same survey methods were used and could result in inaccurate results… ‘The Army Corps’ response is always that we learn lessons and we’ll do better next time. But…[their plan] doesn’t contain a single change after what happened at PortMiami,’ Silverstein (Miami Waterkeeper) said.” Read After Miami coral-killing, activists warn about Port Everglades work

    Drew Martin writes for the Palm Beach Post – “We see the Agricultural Reserve being destroyed by unnecessary development…This is because county staffers do not promote good planning…County planners are now simply told to present proposals to be approved. It does not matter whether the county can afford the projects because there is never any real discussion of how we will pay for these infrastructure costs…Members of the public don’t attend meetings because the commission no longer listens to them. Commissioners meet with developers before public meetings and have their minds made up when they come to the meetings.” Read Poor planning leading to catastrophic over development

    Sam Hananel reports for the Associated Press – “The Supreme Court is making it easier for landowners to bring a court challenge when federal regulators try to restrict property development due to concerns about water pollution…In a separate opinion, three of the court’s conservative justices renewed concerns about ‘the reach and systemic consequences’ of the Clean Water Act.” Read Justices rule for property owners in wetlands case

    Sam D reports for Science World Report – “Human degradation of the world’s natural resources is faster than the planet’s ability to absorb the damage or recover, according to a new and in depth environmental research conducted by the UN. The study results also imply that the deterioration rate of the environment is increasing globally, in spite of cooperative efforts to persuade nations to take improvement measures for essential natural resources such as seas, water and land.” Read Human Damage To Environment Faster Than Its Recovery, UN Study Reveals

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 8, 6:00 pm – Attend Ales and Wild Tails with The Sierra Club’s Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson at The Ale and the Witch in Saint Petersburg. Learn about Florida’s rivers and springs, and the pressing issues that threaten them. An additional presentation will focus on the Sabal Trail. For more information, click here.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at .

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 7, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Tuesday, June 7th, 2016 @ 11:11am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 7, 2016

     

    Ron Littlepage writes for The Florida Times Union – “It was one of those coffee-spewing moments…Gov. Rick Scott…said all of those mega-developments popping up across Florida during his reign are actually good for the environment…Our aquifer, which has been Florida’s lifeblood for centuries, is over tapped. A big reason- over development. Out wetlands, which help cleanse our water, are disappearing to be replaced by rooftops and asphalt. Yep, over development…Scott says plopping down new cities…is good for the environment because they produce tax dollars to help repair the environmental damage that development causes. How’s that for circular reasoning?...All of this development is possible because…[Scott] and his cronies in the Legislature have wiped out the state’s growth management laws…Here’s an idea: We will get voters to approve a constitutional amendment to set aside several hundred million dollars a year to buy environmentally sensitive land to protect it from being developed. Oh, wait…” Read Scott’s wacky take on the environment

    Cara Capp and Michael Baldwin write for News-Press – “U.S. Sugar has placed several full-page…advertisements reporting the “facts” about moving Lake Okeechobee water south. On behalf of the 61 organizations of the Everglades Coalition…we must set the record straight…U.S. Sugar’s ad ignored the consensus of expert opinion that more storage, treatment, and conveyance south of Lake Okeechobee is needed…Both CERP and the state-sponsored technical review by the University of Florida Water Institute indicate that achieving this goal will require additional lands…The important work to repair the Herbert Hoover Dike…will have a minimal impact on reducing lake discharges. Deepening lake levels…would only worsen ecological conditions of the lake and the quality of the water being discharged to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee…The Everglades Coalition calls on U.S. Sugar to step up as a restoration partner and immediately resume negotiations with state and federal leaders to sell a portion of its EAA lands to secure the missing piece needed to solve Florida’s water crisis and restore America’s Everglades.” Read U.S. Sugar ad ignores missing piece of the puzzle

    Peter Frederick writes for The Conversation – “As I complete my 30th year as an ecologist studying and trying to restore [the Everglades], it is increasingly clear that restoration can work and will benefit both wild spaces and people. However, that view rests heavily on the assumption that we will commit to fixing a central problem – water storage.” Read Restoring the Everglades will benefit both humans and nature

    Isadora Rangel reports for the TC Palm – “A coalition of environmental groups is pushing the state to expedite planning of a reservoir that could significantly reduce Lake Okeechobee discharges to the St. Lucie River, but water managers and Gov. Rick Scott haven’t jumped on board…Environmental groups are trying to gain momentum from a highly publicized new law that creates a dedicated fund for the Everglades with priority given to projects that reduce discharges…The reservoir…would hold water that leaves the lake and send it to treatment areas before it reaches Everglades National Park, said Eric Draper, executive director of Audubon Florida, one of the groups pushing to expedite the project…The hope is that if the reservoir is planned this year, the Legislature would allocate at least some of the money for it in 2018…Draper said planning for south storage…should happen before north storage.” Read Gov. Rick Scott noncommittal on water storage efforts to cut Lake Okeechobee discharges

    Tyler Treadway writes for the TC Palm – “Stopping the discharges for a week or two might forestall a bloom, say some scientists. Others say it’s at least worth a try…Stopping discharges, even for a week or two, would both raise the water’s salinity level and lower its nutrient levels…The corps has suspended discharges before.” Read Possible way to stop algae blooms: Stop discharges

    Stacy White writes for The Tampa Bay Times – “As a native Floridian and someone who is deeply rooted in rural Hillsborough County, I have always enjoyed hunting and fishing…Because of my belief that hunting should be sustainable and that vulnerable wildlife should be conserved for future generations, I oppose the hunting of the Florida black bear. There are about 4,500 black bears confined to fragmented ecosystems across the state. In fact, the Florida black bear was a state-listed threatened species until just three years ago…FWC approved of the hunt with the mindset that the black bear population has grown so high that the bears had become a nuisance to humans. This is clearly a smoke screen to the facts at hand. In reality, my analysis tells me that the hunt was about reducing the bear population because of a few select special interests that wish to further encroach on the bears’ native ecosystems….[N]uisance bears are best dealt with through efforts other than hunting…Some might say this is not a Hillsborough County issue, but if conservationists are successful in connecting the fragmented ecosystems through greenways, we might one day see black bears venture into some of our preservation sites…[T]his is an issue of critical importance to Florida. With the current population count and fragmented habitat that remains, we should be looking to preserve Florida black bears and their habitat, not hunt them.” Read No more black bear hunts in Florida

    Steve Contorno and Charlie Frago report for The Tampa Bay Times – “In a 6-0 vote, (Hillsborough County) commissioners approved a resolution and letter to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission opposing this year’s (black bear) hunt. The resolution came at the urging of Commissioner Stacy White, a self-described ‘avid outdoorsman’ and hunter who said he supported hunting as a conservation tool for other animals- but not for the black bear…Tom Graef, regional director for the FWC, said the bear population is…moving into residential areas. Hunting is the only way to stop that, he said. ‘More bears living among people means more human-bear conflicts and more vehicle accidents, putting more people and property at risk,’ Graef said…St. Petersburg City Council…also passed a resolution 8-0 opposing the bear hunt…Hillsborough’s resolution, spearheaded by an east Hillsborough conservative and backed by a Republican-controlled commission, was a pointed shot at the Republican administration in Tallahassee.” Read Hillsborough County, city of St. Petersburg tell Tallahassee to end black bear hunt

    The Miami Herald Editorial Board writes – “Given a string of setbacks regarding FPL’s plans to expand the nuclear energy plant at Turkey Point, the recent disclosure that it plans to delay construction for up to four years is a victory for common sense and for critics who worry about the project’s impact on safety and the environment…FPL says…recovery costs will decrease during the delay, but remain necessary as part of the licensing procedure and the need to learn from other nuclear energy projects around the country that have also experienced unforeseen delays…[T]he utility also wants the PSC to waive the requirement that it file a feasibility report that essentially states that the project it applied for nearly a decade ago is still viable…If the existing nuclear plant is causing problems, wouldn’t an expansion make matters worse?...[T]he PSC, which has been too cozy with those it regulates, should suspend charges to consumers until FPL can…reassure the public that the expansion will really take place. If prudent planning warrants a pause in the plant’s expansion, it also warrants a pause in recovery costs.” Read Consumers deserve ‘pause’ in FPL’s nuclear plant recovery costs

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 7, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1st Avenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. This month’s class will be on springs chemistry: General, nutrients, and trace contaminants. For more information, click here.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - June 1, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Tuesday, June 7th, 2016 @ 9:40am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    June 1, 2016

     

    John Kennedy reports for my Palm Beach Post – “Five years after Gov. Rick Scott scaled back Florida’s growth laws, massive development projects are underway across the state, boosting employment and tax collections but also sparking fears of traffic-choked roads and environmental calamities. Palm Beach County’s unincorporated western area is the site of almost 14,000 new homes planned in coming years, spread across four new communities…[S]imilar, multi-thousand-acre projects are also in the works…across remote stretches of scrub and wetland- virtually in every corner of Florida. Such mega-projects as Babcock Ranch, Plum Creek, Lake Pickett and Deseret Ranch, are poised to add thousands of houses, millions of feet of commercial space and swell the state’s population through the next decade by converting vast amounts of rural land…Scott…[guided the] Legislature through a rewrite of growth management standards first enacted in 1985. Under the changes, state oversight of local planning was limited mostly to projects with statewide impact. Standards for citizens challenging development projects also were toughened…Under the changes…, concurrency- a requirement that schools, parks and adequate roads be in place before development is completed- was reduced to an option…Scott and the Legislature also eliminated the state agency overseeing growth management, the Department of Community Affairs…Scott also cut $700 million from property taxes going to water management districts – forcing wholesale layoffs and further reducing state oversight…Last year, one of the state’s oldest processes for managing large-scale projects-the…Development of Regional Impact process…was eliminated…The building turnaround has come against the backdrop of a series of environmental failures that have endangered waterways across the state.” Read How Rick Scott’s regulations rollback led to today’s building boom

    The Orlando Sentinel Editorial Board writes – “It’s no exaggeration to say that Florida’s environment, economy and quality of life depend on clean, plentiful water. The state entrusts the critical responsibility of protecting and conserving this most precious natural asset to five regional public agencies. A controversial proposal for one of those agencies to hand over conservation land for development has highlighted the need to guard against obvious conflicts among those who run them…Most permit applications don’t…reach the board; they’re decided by the district’s staff who, unlike the board, don’t normally reach their decisions in public meetings. Former board members told the News Journal that district staff has been operating in fear of losing their jobs because of a wave of firings and forced resignations…In this atmosphere, how many staffers would dare stand in the way of a project pushed by the firm of the district’s chairman, a gubernatorial appointee?...The district’s reputation and responsibilities are more important than any one board member or his business. Miklos needs to take off one of his hats, for good; either rule out representing clients before the district, or quit its board.” Read Rid water agency of chairman’s conflict

    Scott Maxwell writes for the Orlando Sentinel – “Hottest mess of a city: That’d be DeBary. Any time your City Hall gets raided, you’re having a bad day…FDLE [wants] to know whether city officials illegally destroyed public records…Environmental official who most needs to resign: That’d be John Miklos, the chairman of the St. Johns River Water Management District, who is neck-deep in DeBary’s development deal…On May 1, I suggested Miklos resign or end all his conflicted business deals. Since then, the editorial boards at the News-Journal, Florida Today and Orlando Sentinel have all said the same.” Read Ugly day: DeBary City Hall gets raided

    Jeanne Rife reports for NH Voice – “Florida bear hunt has been criticized by several environmental agencies and local activists. Now, an emotional ad has been aired in Central Florida to urge Governor Rick Scott to stop the bear hunt…[P]ictures of Florida black bears [are] shown with soft music in the background. Suddenly, the music stops with a gunshot…Voice of a dying bear takes over music…[A]n original bear voice [was] used…which was recorded during last year’s bear hunt…Local activists desperately want to stop the hunt, while FWC hasn’t formally announced any bear hunt for this year.” Read Emotional Ad Urges Florida Governor to Halt Bear Hunt

    Virginia Barker writes for Florida Today – “In a recent FLORIDA TODAY, guest column entitled ‘Is the Indian River DOA?’ it was stated that ‘no coordinated, legitimate plan for recovery has been crafted yet.’ This statement is unfounded and insulting to the many dedicated and talented community members who, after more than 150 public meetings, developed the Indian River Lagoon Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan. The plan was adopted by the Indian River Lagoon National Estuary Program, the Governor of Florida, and the United States Environmental Protection Agency. It outlines 68 actions agreed to by more than 100 agencies and local governments with management responsibility for the Lagoon…In 2009, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection completed…The Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Report…Action plans for complying with recommended nutrient load limits were adopted in 2013 after numerous public meetings.” Read Yes, there IS a plan for the Indian River Lagoon

    Andy Reid reports for the Sun Sentinel – “While county officials have questioned the appropriateness of dumping sewage sludge in a farming region that drains water to the Everglades, they say because state law allows it, the cleanup agreed to with Dan Griffin Sod Co. was as far as they could go…Treated sewage sludge…is high in phosphorus and other potential contaminants and shouldn’t be dumped on land anywhere in South Florida, said Eric Draper, executive director of Audubon Florida…[T]axpayers are already spending billions to get phosphorus out of water that drains into the Everglades.” Read Fight over sewage-sludge dumping averted in Palm Beach County

    David Fleshler reports for the Sun Sentinel – “The Corps announced…it will more than double the amount of water discharged from the lake to the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico to give the lake enough room to absorb rain from future storms without overwhelming the Depression-era dike that protects lakefront towns.”Read Lake Okeechobee to discharge more harmful fresh water to ocean

    Craig Pittman writes for Flamingo – “Deep beneath the ground we stand on, below the strip malls and condos…under the…rumbling concrete highways and lush green golf courses, there’s a reservoir of water that makes life in Florida possible. The underground Floridan aquifer…roars through Swiss-cheese caverns of crumbling limestone, bubbling up to the surface in the springs, producing what environmental activist Marjory Stoneman Douglas once called ‘bowls of liquid light.’…The flows have slowed, in some cases stopping entirely…The culprit, say experts, is over-pumping of the water in the aquifer…Meanwhile…[f]orests have turned into suburban sprawl or a ranch or a row of crops, and fertilizer and sewer waste have begun leaching into the springs and causing blooms of noxious…algae…When Jeb Bush was governor…he launched an initiative to save the springs…A committee set up by Bush of springs experts and advocates…made a host of recommendations for dealing with the problems. But Governor Rick Scott…pulled the plug on the initiative shortly after he took office…So far, the legislature has adopted none of the suggestions.” Read The Ripple Effect: Why We Love the Florida Springs

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.

    Sierra Club is seeking an Organizing Representative based in Palm Beach County for their Everglades Restoration Campaign


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 4, 10:00 am – Attend Coastal Dune Lake Day. Learn about the coastal Dune Lakes and experience Western Lake from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm. Paddle to clean up the Lake from 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm. Clean up the park from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Meet at the Boat Launch Parking Lot at Grayton Beach State Park. Fore more information, contact Marlue Maris at localon30a@gmail.com

    June 7, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1st Avenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. This month’s class will be on springs chemistry: General, nutrients, and trace contaminants. For more information, click here.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in EastpointClick here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at floridaconservationcoalition@gmail.com

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief- May 31, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Tuesday, May 31st, 2016 @ 9:21am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    May 31, 2016

     

    Dinah Voyles Pulver reports for The Daytona Beach News-Journal – “State law enforcement agents descended on DeBary City Hall…with a search warrant. When they left…they took with them more than 37,000 emails between the city manager and council members. The emails included all correspondence related to the city’s dealings with the St. Johns River Water Management District over a proposed development on conservation land near the SunRail station…Circuit Judge Kathryn Weston found probable cause that City Manager Dan Parrott violated the Sunshine Law…Parrott asked the council members for their comments and suggestions on a draft letter he was sending to Ann Shortelle, [SJRWMD] executive director…Parrott hoped to prevent the district from voting to turn the land over to Volusia County, which the county has pushed for since learning of the city’s plans.” Read State agents raid DeBary City Hall

    Randall reports for Southeast Ag Net – “Considering the possibility of another bear hunt this year, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation commission will hold three webinars about bear-management issues…The commission will meet June 22 and June 23 in Apalachicola and is expected to discuss the possibility of holding another hunt… ‘We want public input and feedback, so that we can go to our commissioners with a fully informed option,’ Telesco (FWC’s bear management program coordinator) said. ‘That is our job, but the commissioners are going to make the decision…’” Read Florida Fish and Wildlife Holds Webinars on Bear Hunt

    Orlando Sentinel Editorial Board writes – “The state of Florida produces a helpful pamphlet “A guide to living in bear country” for those with homes near black-bear habitat…One method missing from the pamphlet is putting a bear in the cross hairs of a rifle scope and pulling the trigger…Now, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is considering another bear hunt despite the fact that the last one looked more like a bear slaughter. Before the state acts too hastily, it should listen to elected officials in Central Florida, the epicenter of human/bear interaction. The Seminole County Commission approved a resolution…asking the FWC to consider nonlethal bear-management methods first and to leave Seminole out of any future hunts…Wildlife viewing is the second-most popular outdoor recreation activity in the state and has an economic impact double that of the citrus industry.” Read Protect people and black bears

    James Call reports for the Tallahassee Democrat – “A Graham amendment to a water appropriations committee bill would pay for a $3 million study of the flow of water in the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint rivers basin.” Read Graham seeks $3M for Apalachicola study

    Associated Press reports – “[T]wo Florida panthers have been found dead from separate vehicle strikes…[A] 4-year-old female’s body was found…in Lee County, and a 2-year-old male was found the same day…in Highlands County…A total of 25 Florida panthers have been found dead in 2016, with 20 road fatalities.” Read 2 Florida panthers killed in separate vehicle strikes

    Brian Yablonski writes for the Tampa Bay Times – “With more than 20 million Floridians and nearly 100 million visitors annually, it is abundantly clear that our wildlife faces great challenges. Bold actions are needed to protect wildlife when and where it is most vulnerable…Critical Wildlife Areas can be designated…to manage access in order to protect wildlife…At Bird Island, where 17 different species have nested, wood stork nest productivity is up by 25 percent since the CWA was established.” Read Critical Wildlife Areas provide symphony

    Scott Callahan reports for the Daily Commercial – “A consulting engineer for a company seeking to pump 496,000 gallons of water a day from two springs…has conceded this could affect the spring flow of nearby Beltons Millpond, so the company has agreed to monitor the situation.” Read Pumping water may impact Beltons Millpond

    News Service of Florida reports – “Florida Power & Light’s plan to build a natural-gas power plant in Okeechobee County is close to getting a key approval, after state and local government agencies signed off…” Read FPL’s Okeechobee natural-gas power plant nears Florida DEP approval

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.

    Sierra Club is seeking an Organizing Representative based in Palm Beach County for their Everglades Restoration Campaign


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    June 4, 10:00 am – Attend Coastal Dune Lake Day. Learn about the coastal Dune Lakes and experience Western Lake from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm. Paddle to clean up the Lake from 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm. Clean up the park from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Meet at the Boat Launch Parking Lot at Grayton Beach State Park. Fore more information, contact Marlue Maris at localon30a@gmail.com

    June 7, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1st Avenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. This month’s class will be on springs chemistry: General, nutrients, and trace contaminants. For more information, click here.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 22, 8:30 am – Attend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Meeting where bear management and the possibility of another bear hunt will be discussed. The meeting will take place at the Franklin County School Gymnasium in Eastpoint. Click here, for the agenda.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

FCC News Brief - May 26, 2016

Posted by Gladys Delgadillo, Thursday, May 26th, 2016 @ 10:03am

  • FCC News Brief

    Florida’s best environmental reporting, editorials, and op-eds

    May 26, 2016

     

    Eliot Kleinberg reports for the Palm Beach Post – “The group fighting to overturn approval of the sprawling development now called Westlake said…it’s appealing last month’s ruling to dismiss its case. ‘We believe this ruling is inconsistent with numerous comprehensive plan policies regarding development and road design in and around rural communities,’ 1000 Friends of Florida attorney…said…After the county approved the project, formerly known as Minto West, environmentalists, preservationists and residents of The Acreage sued, arguing that the project violated state laws against sprawl and that the county had ignored its own comprehensive plan.” Read “1000 Friends of Florida” appeals rejection of attempt to block Minto West/Westlake

    The Naples Daily News Editorial Board writes – “The Southwest Florida ruling involves Corkscrew Farms, a planned 1,325-unit development east of Estero in the Density Reduction/Groundwater Resource area, a conservation region long considered important to wildlife and the water supply…The suit was filed by the Estero Council of Community Leaders and the Responsible Growth Management Coalition. Essentially, the ruling tells those citizen groups they don’t have a right to block a project based on concerns about traffic, the environment and wildlife because they aren’t directly affected property owners…For two years since 75 percent of voters backed Amendment 1, the Legislature hasn’t come close to allocating the $300 million yearly that went into the state’s Florida Forever land-buying program…A majority of seats are at stake on both the Lee and Collier commissions this year, giving voters a chance to find out where candidates stand on land acquisition.” Read Lee property rights ruling brings conservation lands into focus

    Ayn Marie Samuelson writes for Florida Today – “Some 20 years ago, FLORIDA  TODAY’s headlines informed readers that our Lagoon was sick. Over two decades later…the diagnosis is grave…[T]he layers of government and their bureaucracies, from the federal and state, to the counties and cities, have failed to properly diagnose and treat the “patient”…[T]he political and bureaucratic functions of government have become collaborators in failure, ultimately leading to taxpayer desperation and distrust. For example, after the most recent fish-kill, the county’s response has been to suggest a property tax increase, without first having proposed a plausible plan of action…We know from experience that higher taxes will not activate quality decision-making. Instead of a well-researched, coordinated plan of action that assesses both costs and benefits, and efficient allocation of our limited resources, residents encountered more government resolutions, committees and task forces.” Read Is the Indian River DOA?

    Isadora Rangel reports for the TC Palm – “(Incoming Senate President) Negron, R-Stuart, said he’s been talking to scientists, environmentalists and the agriculture industry and asked each group to give him their solutions to the (Lake Okeechobee) discharges. He said he expects to decide on the best plan by early fall, just before state lawmakers begin meeting in committees to prepare for the 2017 legislative session…He then will lobby his fellow lawmakers to accept the plan and allocate money…As Senate president…Negron will be in a powerful position to negotiate with Gov. Rick Scott and incoming House Speaker Richard Corcoran…The money for the proposal would come from a law…that creates a dedicated fund for Everglades restoration…[from] Amendment 1 dollars…Negron said he will use a 2014 University of Florida study to guide his decision.” Read Plan to cut Lake O discharges in pipeline, incoming Senate President Joe Negron vows

    Scott Maxwell reports for the Orlando Sentinel – “Florida is about to experience the wildest, most wide-open election season this state has seen in a generation…In past years, most Florida races were deadly dull with predetermined winners. One year, not a single incumbent in the entire state- for Congress, State House or State Senate- lost a bid for re-election. Not a one. This year, however, things will be different…I just want this election cycle to be what elections are supposed to be- opportunities for change and reckoning – which they haven’t been in a long time, thanks to gerrymandering.” Read Florida elections may be a bloodbath. Hallelujah!

    Bruce Ritchie reports for Politico Florida – “Guest, 64, is retiring after 26 years as managing attorney of Earthjustice in Florida, in a career that has put him at the center of many key environmental battles and earned him praise from allies and opponents alike. No successor has been named.” Read Environmentalists’ ‘Elvis’ reflects on a generation leading Earthjustice

    Eliot Kleinberg reports for my Palm Beach Post – “Broward County will soon reroute as much as 20 million gallons a day of treated wastewater to neighborhoods and golf courses west of Boca Raton…Broward has been dumping the wastewater into the Atlantic Ocean, but Florida gave it a deadline of 2025 to stop.” Read Broward wastewater soon heading to west Boca instead of ocean

    The Center for Biological Diversity writes for eNews Park Forest – “In a partisan vote, the U.S. house of Representatives passed the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, which, if enacted into law, would gut protections for several endangered species…and remove the Clean Water Act’s ability to control destructive invasive species. The must-pass legislation now moves to the Senate… ‘Republicans know that the overwhelming majority of Americans support the Endangered Species Act and our public lands, so they use ‘military readiness’ as a shield to advance their extreme agenda,’ said Brett Hartle, endangered species policy director at the Center for Biological Diversity…The Obama administration has threatened to veto the House’s bill.” Read House Passes Most Environmentally Destructive Defense Authorization Act in History

     

     

    From Our Readers

    The information in this section is forwarded to you at the request of some of our readers. Inclusion in this section does not necessarily constitute endorsement by the FCC.

     



    Job Postings

    The North Florida Land Trust is seeking a Land Protection Specialist

    The Community Power Network is seeking a Florida Program Director

    The Center for Biological Diversity is seeking a staff or senior attorney – Southeast Endangered Species.

    Sierra Club is seeking an Organizing Representative based in Palm Beach County for their Everglades Restoration Campaign


    Petitions

    Ask the SFWMD to deny the permit for the Crosstown Parkway that cuts through TWO State Preserves

    Save the Econlockhatchee River!

    Ask County Commissions to Pass Bear-Friendly Trash Ordinances

    Save Conservation Land Surrounding Gemini Springs

    Stop the Port Canaveral Rail Extension Project

    Ask the USACE to reject Harbor Sound application to fill wetlands

    Paynes Prairie in danger

    Save the Biggest Wetland Mitigation Bank in the U . S . A . from Development

    Deny Beruff’s Mitigation Bank Permit

     

    Making Connections

    Gulf Restoration Network’s Johanna de Graffenreid wants to help citizens/environmental groups interested in opposing the Sabal Trail Pipeline. Contact her at johanna@healthygulf.org.

     

    Upcoming Environmental Events

    May 26, 6:00 pm – Attend Santa Rosa’s Board of County Commission Meeting in the board meeting room at 6495 Caroline Street in Milton. Share your opinions on the proposed RIB station near Williams Creek. For more information on this issue, click here.

    May 28, 2:00 pm – Attend Friends of Lullwater Lake’s Board of Directors Meeting at 16423 E Lullwater Drive.  Participants will continue the planning and implementation process of restoring the Coastal Dune Lake.

    June 4, 10:00 am – Attend Coastal Dune Lake Day. Learn about the coastal Dune Lakes and experience Western Lake from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm. Paddle to clean up the Lake from 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm. Clean up the park from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Meet at the Boat Launch Parking Lot at Grayton Beach State Park. Fore more information, contact Marlue Maris at localon30a@gmail.com

    June 7, 12:00 pm – Attend Springs Academy Tuesdays at the North Florida Springs Environmental Center (99 NW 1st Avenue) in High Springs every first Tuesday of the month. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class to help support the efforts of Florida Springs Institute. This month’s class will be on springs chemistry: General, nutrients, and trace contaminants. For more information, click here.

    June 18, 2:00 pm – Attend “Karst Environments in Florida and Geology of Fred George Basin,” a presentation by Harley Means (FLGS Geologist), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

    June 25, 2:00 pm – Attend “The Beautiful Life of a Dead Tree: The Most Important Tree in the Woods,” a presentation by Jim Stevenson (Florida Springs Expert), at 2043 Capitol Circle NW, Tallahassee, FL. For more information, contact Michael Kelly at (229) 225- 6530.

     

     

     

    Do you know of an upcoming environmental event or meeting you would like to include in the FCC News Brief? Send us a quick e-mail and we will include it for you.

    We hope you enjoy this service and find it valuable. Our goal is to provide you with the latest environmental news from around the state. Our hope is that you will use this information to more effectively and frequently contact your elected representatives, and add your voice to the growing chorus of Floridians concerned about the condition of our environment and the recent direction of environmental policies.

    Please encourage your friends, family, and co-workers to join the FCC and subscribe to the Daily News Brief (both free).

    Also, check out our FCC Facebook page.

    If you wish to stop receiving these daily emails just reply with the subject "unsubscribe" and you will be promptly removed.

    Please send all suggestions, comments and criticism to Gladys Delgadillo at

    About the FCC: The Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC) is composed of over 60 conservation organizations and over two thousand individuals devoted to protecting and conserving Florida’s land, fish and wildlife, and water resources.   

    For more information on the FCC visit www.floridaconservationcoalition.org

** The Florida Conservation Coalition has included a “one-click option” to help those who want a convenient way to reach those who need to be contacted, but it is technically impossible to make this function with all email clients. There will also be a downloadable and printable text version that can be copied into your email, but you will have to also place the addresses individually.  We are sorry for the additional time that this second option might require but that is the state of current technology.**


Florida Conservation Coalition

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