LISTEN LIVE

environment

A man who championed Everglades restoration and inspired decades of Florida conservationists died Wednesday during a fishing trip, according to his family.

Florida’s wildlife agency will be holding a lionfish summit in the Fall. The goal is to find more ways to get rid of the spiny invasive species plaguing state waters.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige is expected this week to sign the world's first ban on the sale of sunscreens containing the chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate. The state is banning the products because of concerns they may be harming one of the state's biggest attractions — coral reefs.

While it doesn't kick in until 2021, the move is already prompting pushback.

Beginning July 1st, Florida’s state waters will be open for bay scallop harvest. This scalloping season will be twelve times as long as 2017’s, thanks to healthier scallops in the Gulf.

Advocates are raising concerns about state plans for cleaning up Florida’s ailing springs.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott wants discharges of polluted water out of Lake Okeechobee redirected elsewhere.

The U.S. Navy is dropping live bombs in a national forest in Florida this week.

The Orlando Sentinel reports the bombs began falling in the Ocala National Forest Monday. The bombing by Jacksonville's Naval Air Station jets at the Pinecastle Range Complex will continue through Thursday.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

A red tide algae bloom is persisting along Sarasota County beaches. Background concentrations of the toxic organism Karenia brevis are typical in Gulf waters, but very low to medium concentrations have been recorded across parts of Florida's west coast. 

The American Petroleum Institute wants to expand oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Atlantic coast.  API says safety isn’t a concern this time. 

Environmental officials are investigating a freshwater turtle die-off in Florida.

Sea-level rise is going to cost Broward County -- and leaders don't know yet how they're going to pay.

A roundtable meeting in Davie on Thursday brought together more than 40 elected officials, city staff and business leaders from across Broward. Many expressed concern over a lack of funding for sea-level rise adaptation projects.

Ron Wallace, the city engineer for Parkland, said he's concerned about drainage in South Florida's current system, which moves water from west to east.

A gigantic $4 billion retail and entertainment complex won government approval Thursday after years of debate, greenlighting what promises to be the largest mall in North America, just a few miles from the environmentally sensitive Everglades.

Scott, Cabinet Eye Land Conservation Projects

May 9, 2018

Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet are expected next month to consider whether to spend nearly $11 million to help limit future development on four ranches and farms in four counties.

The proposals would add 8,388 acres to the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program, which through the use of “conservation easements” restricts future development but allows owners to continue using land for such things as agricultural operations.

Wikipedia.org

Florida’s nearshore waters would be off limits to future oil and gas drilling under a measure that moved closer Tuesday to appearing before voters in November. 

Citizens' Climate Lobby

Environmental advocates from around the country will be gathering at the University of South Florida for the Climate Action 2018 conference.

The goal of the event is to inform both lawmakers and the general public about the consequences that climate change has on the nation and how people may be able to stop it.

In South Florida, they all have alligators. But there are some key differences between national wildlife refuges, national parks and national preserves. Here’s a snapshot:

The state’s lawmakers are hard at work in Tallahassee as the 2018 legislative session continues. This week on the latest edition of our monthly Florida Matters news roundtable series we’re talking about some of their priorities and how they could affect residents.


After drawing widespread opposition from business and agriculture groups, a proposal to redefine legal standing for Floridians on environmental issues won’t go before voters in November.

The Judicial Committee of the Florida Constitution Revision Commission on Friday unanimously rejected the proposal (P 23), filed by commission member Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch, with opponents saying it was too broad.

Pixnio

Now that most of the holiday presents have probably been opened, you may be thinking about eco-friendly ways to get rid of the mess. There are plenty of great ways to recycle your holiday clutter, but it’s not always so simple as throwing it all in your recycling bin.


Business Group Takes Aim At State Environmental Proposal

Nov 21, 2017

One of state's most-powerful business groups is gearing up to fight a proposal at the Florida Constitution Revision Commission that the group argues would lead to increased litigation about environmental issues.

Associated Industries of Florida announced Tuesday it has hired attorneys from the Gunster law firm to battle a proposal filed by Constitution Revision Commission member Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch that would give Floridians more legal standing when environmental problems occur.

Florida lawmakers are advancing a plan to allocate $100 million a year to the land buying program Florida Forever. Last year the legislature zeroed out its funding.

Florida Governor Rick Scott stopped by the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens Monday extolling his proposal for $1.7 billion in environmental funding next year — a more than $200 million boost from the current year.

But some critics are questioning the governor’s motive for the funding increase. Environmental groups who’ve traditionally been at odds with Scott are tepidly supportive of the governor’s proposal.


Gov. Scott Calls For Boost In Environmental Spending

Oct 23, 2017
Photo Courtesy Florida Audubon

Spending on Florida's natural resources and environmental programs would grow by $220 million under a proposal by Gov. Rick Scott as he nears his final recommended state budget.

The $1.7 billion environmental package for lawmakers to consider in 2018 includes increased funding for the state's springs, beaches and parks, along with $355 million for Everglades restoration, $50 million to help the federal government speed repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dike around Lake Okeechobee and $50 million for Florida Forever, the state's most prominent land-preservation fund.

A Senate panel has approved a plan to appropriate new dollars for the St. Johns River and Florida’s springs.  But the proposal could wind up vying for funding with a beach restoration measure.

Sarasota County

Sarasota County planners will hear a request Thursday afternoon to rezone land for a scrap recycling center next to what has been called the best bird-watching spot in the county.

Florida Forest Service

State officials say Florida is having one of its worst wildfire seasons in years. This week on Florida Matters we're talking about the impact these fires have on the state's environment and economy, and whether there's an end in sight for this dry season.


Coffee-colored water gurgles near the W.P. Franklin Lock and Dam. It flows down the Caloosahatchee River, roughly 30 miles from Fort Myers.

Daylina Miller/WUSF

How do you teach kids about ecology when the natural world is shrinking around them?

In fast growing Florida, one solution is to take environmental studies outside the walls of a classroom.

The Legislature will begin its annual session early this year with the hopes of avoiding the chaos and dysfunction that marked the 2015 session and three special sessions that followed.

The 2016 Florida Legislative session starts Jan. 12, and this week on Florida Matters (Tuesday, Jan. 5 at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, Jan. 10 at 7:30 a.m.), we are previewing some of the bills lawmakers are proposing.

Pages