Lake level expected to continue to drop

Water managers predict that the level of Lake Okeechobee, at 14.37 feet on Friday, will continue to drop and could reach 12.5 feet by June. If it happens, that dry-season drop would be beneficial to the lake’s ecology, according to biologists. “It’s dry. In the near term, it is going to stay dry,” said Cal […]

FDEP approves plan for EAA reservoir project

The long-awaited Everglades Agricultural Area reservoir project moved closer to realization on March 5, when a secretarial order was signed by Florida Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Noah Valenstein. This project was the subject of Senate Bill 10, Audubon Florida’s top 2017 legislative priority. During the development of the project, which occurred on a speedy […]

Herbert Hoover Dike protects much of South Florida

The safety of the Herbert Hoover Dike is vital to the people of the Glades. Those who live around the Big O’s southern shores in South Bay, Belle Glade, Moore Haven and Clewiston know the danger they could be in if the dike failed. The dike also protects the farms of the Everglades Agricultural Area […]

High lake levels prevent recovery

In other areas of the country, people pray for rain. Okeechobee fishermen are praying for a drought. In September, 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 […]

Lake bottom muck inspires many theories

The muck at the bottom of Lake Okeechobee is believed to contain more than 50,000 metric tons of phosphorus. That “legacy” phosphorus contributes to the high levels of phosphorus in the lake, especially during periods of high water levels and turbidity. Where did the phosphorus in the lake bottom muck come from? There are a […]

EAA reservoir plan presented to Florida senators

TALLAHASSEE – “We cannot forget the urgency that we felt last session in addressing the toxic algae blooms. Warm temperatures and heavy rains will put us right back in that situation,” said Senator Rob Bradley. The Senate Appropriations Committee heard Jan. 18 from South Florida Water Management Executive Director Ernie Marks, who assured the committee […]

Lake bottom muck adds to lake phosphorus

Any search for the truth about Lake Okeechobee must include the problem with the muck on the lake bottom. It’s a problem that scientists and environmentalists have known about for a long time. The Lake Okeechobee Sediment Management Feasibility Study prepared by Blasland, Bouck & Lee, Tetra-Tech Inc., Environmental Quality Inc. and Haymar Inc. was […]

EAA reservoir options sent to state legislature

A Jan. 9 report to the Florida Legislature from the South Florida Water Management District lists two “best buy” options for the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) reservoir required as part of Senate Bill 10. SB 10 was signed into law on May 9, 2017 by Governor Rick Scott. “Since its passage, SFWMD’s staff of professional […]

EAA reservoir plan draws heated debate

The public comment period at the Dec. 21 South Florida Water Management District meeting about the Everglades Agricultural Area reservoir brought out emotions and some accusations. While the SFWMD meeting presented EAA reservoir alternatives that can be built on state-owned land, many in the audience were more concerned about State Sen. Joe Negron’s recent statements […]

SFWMD plans EAA reservoir on state land

Sen. Negron wants modeling to use more EAA land Can the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) reservoir be built on land the state already owns? South Florida Water Management District officials are moving ahead with a plan to do just that. Florida State Senator Joe Negron has expressed doubts and asked for computer modeling to use […]