It’s Now or NeverGlades
We are proud to have signed the Now or Neverglades Declaration with our client, Flood Tide Company because we “support the 200-plus Everglades scientists who believe that increased storage, treatment and conveyance of water south of Lake Okeechobee is essential to stop the damaging discharges to the coastal estuaries; to restore the flow of clean, fresh water to Everglades National Park, Florida Bay and the Florida Keys; to improve the health of Lake Okeechobee; and to protect the drinking water for 8 million Floridians living in Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.” (GladesDeclation.org)
If you are not familiar with what is going on, here is more information taken from www.GladesDeclaration.org:
Three nationally vital estuaries are in long-term collapse due to the damming, diking and draining of the River of Grass. The Herbert Hoover Dike that contains Lake Okeechobee prevents fresh water from following its historic path southward through the Everglades.
Today, Lake Okeechobee is treated as an impounding reservoir constantly at risk of overflow. To manage lake levels, too much untreated fresh water is discharged into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie estuaries. Consequently, the lack of fresh water flow through the Everglades makes Florida Bay, the largest contiguous seagrass meadow in the world and crown jewel of Everglades National Park and the Florida Keys, too salty.
The resulting salinity imbalances in all three estuaries cause seagrass die-offs, dangerous algal blooms, multi-year ecosystem collapse and economic hardship. Florida’s $9.7 billion fishing industry (129,000 jobs), $10.4 billion boating industry (83,000 jobs) and $89.1 billion tourism industry (1.1 million jobs) need healthy estuaries.
Additionally, sending water south would improve the water supply for 8 million people (1 out of 3 Floridians) by reducing the threat of saltwater intrusion into drinking wells and the Everglades.
On a personal note, I have been fortunate enough to have camped in the backcountry of the Everglades. I have camped on chickees, where I saw more stars than I ever have before, and that includes Montana. The amount of bird species alone is phenomenal, but the fishing is equally as impressive with everything from tarpon and snook to mangrove snapper. The vastness and wildness might need to be seen to be truly appreciated, but I think everyone can agree that it would be a huge mistake to gamble with something as beautiful and pure as the Everglades.
If you have not done so already, please sign the Now Or Neverglades Declaration so that future generations can continue to enjoy everything the wildlife, natural beauty, camping, fishing, hiking and boating opportunities that Everglades National Park and Florida has to offer.