EAA reservoir funding awaits Trump’s signature

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S Senate passed the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 Oct. 10, which included the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) Reservoir project. The bill will now go to President Donald Trump for approval.  “At long last the Everglades Agricultural Area Reservoir is finally authorized by Congress! We are making history for America’s […]

2018 washed high nutrient load into the lake

OKEECHOBEE — Water Year 2018 (May 1, 2017 through April 30, 2018) brought ten times the target phosphorus loads into Lake Okeechobee, with about 90 percent of that load coming from the watersheds north of the lake, Stuart Van Horn, SFWMD Water Quality Bureau Chief, reported to the Water Resources Analysis Coalition meeting in West […]

Lee County alternately demands no lake releases and more lake releases

LEE COUNTY — It’s no wonder Lee County residents are confused about Lake Okeechobee releases. Half the year, local officials tell them the Caloosahatchee estuaries are dying because they need more freshwater flow from Lake Okeechobee The other six months, they are told the estuaries are dying because there is too much lake water being […]

Coastal cities pump wastewater into the ocean

A running gag in the Disney move “Finding Nemo” was that “All drains lead to the ocean.” The reality isn’t so appealing as the story of little clown fish trying to escape from an aquarium. OKEECHOBEE — They call it “outfall,” a polite term for pumping treated wastewater into rivers or the ocean. In 1986, […]

Will dike repairs mean higher lake levels?

OKEECHOBEE — Will completion of the dike repairs mean higher lake levels? Repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dike will be complete by 2022, according to the report given by Col. Andrew Kelly of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at the Sept. 21 meeting of the County Coalition for Responsible Management of Lake Okeechobee, the […]

Agricultural BMPs ARE protecting water resources

Best Management Practices help reduce the nutrient load in runoff from farms and ranches.

Septic tanks contribute to nutrient overload in waterways

OKEECHOBEE — A potential source of water pollution could be in your backyard. Nationwide about 20 percent of American homes use Onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems (OSTDS), more commonly known as septic tanks. In most states, septic tanks are used in rural areas where it is not cost effective to run sewer lines to […]

Lake still suffering from Hurricane Irma damage

OKEECHOBEE — In September 2017, Hurricane Irma churned the waters of the big lake, ripped up aquatic vegetation and left the shoreline littered with uprooted plants. After the storm, drainage from the north caused the lake to rise rapidly, drowning the nearshore vegetation with high water. The lake’s ecosystem recovery can’t start until the water […]

‘Haters’ blame farmers for algae blooms

OKEECHOBEE — Political campaigns and social media continue to keep the summer algae blooms in the news and continue to confuse the public, according to comments at the Sept. 6, Water Resources Analysis Coalition meeting, held at the South Florida Water Management District Headquarters in West Palm Beach “The forums are wild. It’s crazy out […]

Irma sent phosphorus overload into lake

OKEECHOBEE — Lake Okeechobee is suffering from “weather whiplash,” thanks to Hurricane Irma. At the Sept. 6 Water Resources Analysis Coalition meeting at the South Florida Water Management District Office in West Palm Beach, Drew Bartlett, Deputy Secretary Florida Department of Environmental Protection Office of Ecosystem Restoration, said the phosphorus load into Lake Okeechobee for […]