VIDEO: The Army Corps must make LOSOM a system-wide win

"Cautiously optimistic." That's the way we're feeling as the process to write a new Lake Okeechobee management plan, known as LOSOM, continues into the optimization stage with Plan CC as the foundation. During today's Clean Water Conversation you heard from experts on the east and west coast as they tackled details about the differences in the impacted coastal ecosystems and the necessary modifications it will take to make sure the new LOSOM is a win for everyone. We'd like to extend a big thanks to Mark Perry of Florida Oceanographic Society and James Evans of Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation for sharing their knowledge and insight with us. If you missed the conversation today, you can find the full recording here. And if you [...]

2021-07-29T17:36:09-04:00July 29th, 2021|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations, LOSOM|

VIDEO: The latest on Florida’s toxic algae crisis

With toxic algae yet again plaguing Florida's water, residents are still left vulnerable due to inadequate warnings about the health impacts of exposure and retroactive "solutions" that focus more on temporary clean up than tackling the issue at its root cause. Today's Clean Water Conversation delved into the details of this worsening crisis. We heard input from Florida Gulf Coast University algae scientist Dr. Barry Rosen, Lake Worth Waterkeeper Reinaldo Diaz, and Stuart resident Becky Harris on the toxins in our water, the threats they pose to people and our pets, and how you can become an advocate for change. If you missed the conversation today, you can find the full recording below. https://youtu.be/1sI0f0DylFs Today's Clean Water Conversation was brought [...]

2021-06-25T16:38:49-04:00June 25th, 2021|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations, Toxic Algae|

VIDEO: Breaking down Florida’s 2021 Legislative Session

Florida's 2021 legislative session left much to be desired for those worried about environmental issues. Today's Clean Water Conversation dived into a number of bills that did damage this session. We heard input from Rep. Anna Eskamani (even as she dashed between our event and potential House floor votes happening simultaneously during special session in Tallahassee!), from Executive Director of Florida Conservation Voters, Aliki Moncrief, as well as from our own Policy Director, Gil Smart and Executive Director Eve Samples. Each of them reminded us of the need to remain vigilant. Our voices matter, and together we have the numbers to impact environmental policy in Florida. If you missed the conversation today, you can find the full recording below. For more information [...]

VIDEO: Recapping Florida’s knack for preventable disasters

"Piney Point is a pre-existing condition," Craig Pittman joked with us during today's Clean Water Conversation. The statement exemplified Pittman's easy humor in the face of Florida's complicated and often disturbing lack of environmental concern. But it also carried weight coming from the guy who first wrote about the impending disaster that's playing out now at the phosphate plant in Manatee County in 2003. It's a poignant example of Florida's regrettable tendency towards preventable environmental disasters. During today's Clean Water Conversation, we enjoyed a few laughs but then got down to business discussing the state's many pressing environmental issues. We covered the latest at Piney Point, the possible toxic algae summer ahead, the repealed M-CORES toll roads, the threat of Aquifer Storage and Recovery wells [...]

2021-04-30T15:47:53-04:00April 30th, 2021|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations|

VIDEO: Putting a stop to the Roads to Ruin

During today's Clean Water Conversation, we heard a multi-faceted case supporting the urgent need to repeal M-CORES in full, removing the threat of all three proposed toll roads. We'd like to extend a big thanks our guest representatives from the No Roads to Ruin coalition — Amber Crooks, Ryan Smart, Barbara Byram, and Lilly Rooks — for sharing their expertise. The fight continues to halt these roads, which threaten rural communities, natural springs, and water supply, and put pressure of some of Florida's most loved and endangered wildlife. Friends Executive Director, Eve Samples said it well: "So much of what we all do is defense, and we've got our defensive work cut out for us in the remaining weeks of [...]

2021-03-26T15:16:59-04:00March 26th, 2021|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations|

VIDEO RECORDING: Protecting the Everglades from oil drilling

When asked during today's Clean Water Conversation what everyday people can do to help stop the threat of oil drilling in Big Cypress, Miccosukee activist Houston Cypress, had this to say: “I’m a fan of nonviolent direct action, meaning, let's make a colorful ruckus." As an organization that strives every day to live by Marjory Stoneman Douglas' famous words, "Be a nuisance where it counts," that's advice that we can get on board with. Today's Clean Water Conversation made a powerful case for the urgent need to take action against Burnett Oil Company's proposed oil drilling in Big Cypress. We'd like to extend a big thanks to Jacki Lopez, Alison Kelly, and Houston Cypress for sharing their wealth of knowledge and [...]

2021-02-25T13:39:30-05:00February 25th, 2021|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations|

Protecting the Environment Protects Human Health

“One thing I know in my bones as a scientist is that protecting the environment protects human health. There’s no question that there’s a link between environmental health and human health.” - Dr. Paul Alan Cox Today's Clean Water Conversation made a powerful argument for safeguarding the health of Floridians by taking care of our natural environment. We owe a big thanks to Toxic Puzzle's lead researcher, Dr. Paul Alan Cox, and president of Cleveland Clinic Martin Health, Rob Lord, for reminding listeners that this issue transcends political party lines and for speaking to the urgency of leaders in public health and government working together to address this situation now--not down the road. As Rob Lord put it, "In our local political [...]

2021-01-21T15:46:10-05:00January 21st, 2021|Clean Water Conversations, Toxic Algae|

Join our next Clean Water Conversation: Revisiting the Toxic Puzzle

2018 is a year that most Floridians will never forget. That year, widely recalled as "Toxic18," put toxic algae and its link to serious public health concerns on the map in South Florida. That year, we saw devastating consequences after another summer of toxic Lake Okeechobee discharges. People got sick, dogs died, businesses suffered, and the most destructive red ride in years persisted with help from the constant source of nutrients. Samples collected during significant cyanobacterial blooms of 2016 and 2018 and tested by Dr. Paul Alan Cox's team from the Brain Chemistry Labs in Jackson, WY found concentrations of microcystin 10,000 times greater than that allowed by the state of Ohio for recreational waters. In the years since then, [...]

Recording available now! Clean Water Conversations: Northern Estuary Waterkeepers’ Toxic Discharge Update

We are grateful to all of you for joining us for our latest Clean Water Conversation: Northern Estuary Waterkeepers' Toxic Discharge Update. Today we were joined by Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani, Indian Riverkeeper Mike Conner, and Lake Worth Waterkeeper Reinaldo Diaz to get an update on the damages inflicted onto each of these northern estuaries by the recent start of Lake Okeechobee discharges. The impacts of Lake Okeechobee discharges on each of these ecosystems are devastating and far-reaching. Each time the flood gates open, local environments suffer, and the people that call these areas home are faced with exposure to dangerous cyanobacteria and tremendous economic loss. We are thankful to each of these Waterkeepers for serving as critical sources of local [...]

2020-11-03T12:20:18-05:00October 23rd, 2020|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations|

Recording Available Now! Clean Water Conversation: Stop the Burn

We are grateful to all of you for joining us for our latest Clean Water Conversation: Stop the Burn. Today we covered the environmental and health injustices of sugarcane burning. As our guest Patrick so poignantly emphasized, the history of Everglades restoration is scattered with instances where the reckless pursuit of short term profit was allowed to outweigh that of longterm human health and dignity. This outdated pre-harvest practice is another shocking example of a way that this shortsighted thinking still prevails to this day. Our guests today reminded us of the importance of collectively raising our voices against injustices and lifting up each other's individual experiences, as real human stories are often the most effective tool for fostering change. We can't say enough about the [...]

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