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VIDEO: The injustice of sugarcane burning continues

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXeXCzpMCBQ Stop the Burn campaign leader Christine Louis Jeune painted a vivid picture today as she described what its like to race around the house closing windows and doors against smoke and ash when the smell from nearby sugarcane burns permeates the air. There are no formal warning measures in place to communicate health risks to residents — despite the experience being a common occurrence in Christine's hometown of Belle Glade during the sugarcane burn season which can span up to 8 months of the year. In other words, "after you've already been exposed is when you try to protect yourself," Friends of the Everglades Executive Director Eve Samples put it. Today's Friends of the Everglades LIVE featured important [...]

2023-10-25T17:01:41-04:00October 25th, 2023|Friends of the Everglades LIVE, Sugarcane Burning|

VIDEO: Is the Florida Legislature really doing the people’s work in Tallahassee?

https://www.youtube.com/live/VkKWZJcSTqY?feature=share There was a lot to unpack from this legislative session that ended on May 5, and not a whole lot of it was good news for Florida’s fragile environment. Today’s Friends of the Everglades LIVE focused on what went down and the ways you can still help us kill some of the worst bills that came out of this “Session of Sprawl.” As our Executive Director Eve Samples put it, “Our future as a state is at stake. We are on the front lines of climate change, we’re implementing the most complex and expensive ecosystem restoration effort on the planet in Everglades restoration, and we are not doing ourselves any favors if we allow more reckless development to [...]

WATCH NOW — Last call: SB 540 VETO requests

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9eCeQIy86M From the desk of our Executive Director, Eve Samples, your Voice of the Everglades update: The clock is ticking. Last Thursday, May 9, state lawmakers sent “Sprawl Bill” 540 to the desk of Gov. Ron DeSantis, triggering a 15-day deadline for him to either sign or veto this environmentally reckless bill. If approved, the legislation would be the death knell for responsible growth-management in Florida — putting citizens at huge financial risk if they challenge changes to local comprehensive plans, which are the blueprints for growth in cities and counties. Much is at stake. Florida is the fastest-growing state in the country; it's ground zero for the climate crisis; and it’s undertaking the largest ecosystem restoration effort on [...]

VIDEO: Stop the Florida Legislature from disempowering citizens on growth

https://youtube.com/live/kNiMSwBqu9g?feature=share Florida's legislative session can mean playing a lot of defense against bad legislation, and this year has been no exception. As this "session of sprawl" continues to take shape, we are reminded of the imperative role that citizen action plays in combatting bad bills and how important it is that we maintain our ability to speak out without fear of retribution. We're grateful to our featured guests Jane West, Matt DePaolis and Gil Smart for sharing their extensive knowledge of the many bills moving through the legislature right now and the recurring acknowledgement expressed throughout that smart, intentional development is tied directly to water quality. Florida has a vested interest in getting this right. We remain cautiously optimistic [...]

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. [...]