Satellite images show massive algal bloom on Lake Okeechobee

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is monitoring what they believe to be a large cyanobacteria bloom on Lake Okeechobee. According to Oceanographer Michelle Tomlinson of the NOAA National Ocean Service, they have been monitoring satellite photos of the lake since the start of June. Ms. Tomlinson shared the following information about the images. • […]

Algae testing takes time, says Department of Environmental Regulation

Algae is part of the natural ecosystem in lakes, rivers and streams worldwide. Algae is ever-present in Lake Okeechobee, even when it is not visible in a bloom; boaters and fishermen are used to seeing algae in the water column or blown about by the winds. Since the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began releasing […]

Flood control systems protect South Floridians

The Central and South Florida Flood Control Project had some unintended consequences, but the project did what the engineers set out to do, and because of that flood control project millions of people now live, work, play and farm in areas that would otherwise be underwater part of the year. The South Florida pioneers knew […]

FDEP, SFWMD, NASA watch for algae blooms to check for toxin levels

Report algal blooms by calling 855-305-3903 Images on the news of green water and coastlines choked with a thick green sludge are misleading, according to a South Florida Water Management District briefing on June 8. The images are from 2016 when a massive harmful algae bloom plagued the Treasure Coast. Scientists theorize the 2016 bloom […]

Will feds pay share of cost for planned EAA reservoir?

Will the federal government fund 50 percent of the cost of the planned Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) reservoir? At their June 14 meeting, members of the South Florida Water Management District Governing Board expressed concern that the federal government might not provide the expected 50-50 match to build the EAA reservoir. The reservoir is part […]

Algae coming from many discharge sources

Record rainfall in May and continuing heavy rains this month are causing ecological damage, according to a report given by South Florida Water Management District Water Resources Director Terrie Bates at the June 14 meeting of the SFWMD Governing Board. Algae found in the St. Lucie watershed is coming from many sources, not just from […]

Rep. Mast calls for halt to lake discharges

On June 7, U.S. Rep. Brian Mast (R-18th District) called on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to cease discharges from Lake Okeechobee “until the water quality is deemed safe or an imminent threat to life exists.” Rep. Mast also invited the assistant secretary of the Army for civil works (who overseas the Army Corps) […]

Federal funding for EAA reservoir could be delayed

Plans for a reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee could face funding delays. While Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Army (Civil Works) R.D. James found the Everglades Agricultural Area reservoir plan feasible, the review assessment submitted to the Office of Management and Budget also imposed conditions for implementation. “I have determined that the project identified in […]

District wants to increase water flow south

The South Florida Water Management District is using all of the tools in the box to deal with the runoff from May’s record-breaking rainfall. “Water levels throughout the district — which is made up of 16 counties in South Florida — are very high after record-breaking rainfall in May,” SFWMD spokesman Randy Smith said at […]

Heavy rainfall south of lake fills WCAs

The good news: Freshwater is flowing to Everglades National Park. According to South Florida Water Management District Chief District Engineer John Mitnik, since the rains started in May, water has been flowing steadily south from the water conservation areas (WCAs) north of the Tamiami Trail through the water control structures. All of the gates, however […]