6,300 Acre Wetland Area Opens To Protect St. Lucie River From Algae
Governor Ron DeSantis announced Friday another rescue for Florida’s waterways from toxic algae.
He celebrated the flow of water east of Lake Okeechobee into a new wetland aimed at cleansing the water before it reaches the delicate St. Lucie estuary.
DeSantis says the 6,300 acre wetland will cleanse some 46 billion gallons of water annually.
The vegetation will draw the nutrient pollution from the water as it flows from the state’s largest lake, staving off the toxic algae that has sickened Floridians and killed off marine life.
“Pumping water in today will allow plants to grow that will cleanse the water flowing through the treatment area reducing nutrient levels and improving water quality.”
South Florida Water Management District Board Member Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch says the project will improve the quality of life for residents who live along the river.
“This first water into the cells of the C-44 storm water treatment area represents a bit step forward for the St. Lucie.”
An adjacent reservoir is scheduled to be completed in 2021. The work is part of a multi-billion-dollar Everglades restoration plan, a federal and state partnership.