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Young Friends Update: Miami Beach 4th Graders Discover the Magic of the Everglades!

When did you fall in love with the Everglades? For more than 50 fourth-grade students from Miami Beach, that moment occurred recently at the Royal Palm area of  Everglades National Park. With cameras, ID sheets and a tool bag of resources, students and leaders embarked on the first-ever Young Friends of the Everglades-led field trip to Anhinga and Gumbo Limbo Trails. “Why does that alligator have its mouth open?” “What makes the water so clear?” “What kind of fish is that? Is it native or invasive?” “Why does the Everglades need more water?”  Eager questions like these empowered South Pointe Elementary teachers to build on essential classroom [...]

Will this be another Lost Summer?

Friends of the Everglades Executive Director Eve Samples joined VoteWater Executive Director Gil Smart and TCPalm outdoors writer/columnist Ed Killer for a panel discussion in Stuart on Lake O discharges, the politics of clean water and the prospect of another “lost summer” in 2024. With high water levels in Lake Okeechobee and a busy hurricane season projected, the risk of harmful discharges to the St. Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon are looming. But the May 1 event, hosted by the Council on Aging of Martin County at the Kane Center, focused on short-term and long-term solutions that we can all help advance. Friends of the [...]

WATCH NOW — Floridians Deserve the Right to Clean Water

https://www.youtube.com/live/eC3CAq30C8M?si=tOQrO4sDJ8G0OCMG Thank you to Joe Bonasia, Matt DePaolis, Capt. Cody Pierce and Gil Smart for joining Friends of the Everglades today to discuss the herculean effort to put Florida's Right to Clean Water on the 2026 ballot. Simply put, elected leaders in Florida have not fulfilled their duty to enforce existing clean-water legislation. All too often, they've compounded the issue by introducing new bills that make things even worse. Gaining an enforceable, fundamental right to clean water would ensure this vital protection for the state's most valuable resource by going above our legislators' heads. As we heard today, it's an important movement that will require hundreds of thousands of signatures from registered Florida voters. Get involved today. Even if [...]

VIDEO: Stay engaged to keep lawmakers accountable this Legislative session

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKXCFA6ngkE There’s always a lot to track in Florida’s annual 60-day Legislative session. This year is no exception. During today's Friends of the Everglades LIVE, VoteWater's Gil Smart broke down the details of several bad environmental proposals looming, as well as the few silver linings that may emerge. Reps. Lindsay Cross and Anna Eskamani offered their takes on what to expect in the days ahead and praised the citizen involvement that they claimed necessary to encourage environmentally-successful outcomes. "Feedback does matter. If you have the ability to come up to Tallahassee to speak in support of good bills or against bad bills, it does make a difference," Rep. Cross said — a point that Rep. Eskamani enthusiastically agreed with. [...]

Floridians deserve the Right to Clean Water

Join us in demanding clean and healthy water in Florida! The "why" is simple and obvious. The current system has failed our most basic expectations, risking or harming our most basic needs. Clean water should not be vulnerable to state-sanctioned pollution. To correct this systemic flaw, the Florida Right to Clean Water movement is working to amend the Florida Constitution to include a fundamental right to clean and healthy waters, setting out clear standards, priorities and consequences should a state executive agency violate this right. Floridians must band together to demand responsible governance and accountability when it comes to our most important natural resource. The goal is steep and we need your help. More than 800,000 physically signed petitions must [...]

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