© 2022 All Rights reserved WUSF
News, Jazz, NPR
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Environment

EPA is facing a lawsuit over manatee deaths and Indian River Lagoon water quality

Manatee swimming
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
/
Environmental groups are suing the Environmental Protection Agency over an unprecedented manatee die-off in the Indian River Lagoon.

The groups say more than half of the manatee deaths were related to starvation in the Indian River Lagoon.

Environmental groups are suing the Environmental Protection Agency over an unprecedented manatee die-off in the Indian River Lagoon.  

The groups want the EPA to strengthen water quality standards to address nutrient pollution that has led to widespread harmful algae blooms and seagrass losses. 

A record 1,100 manatees died in Florida in 2021. The groups say more than half of the deaths were related to starvation in the Indian River Lagoon.

They say the nutrient pollution is related to wastewater treatment discharges, leaking septic systems and fertilizer runoff, among other sources. 

Earthjustice is representing the Center for Biological Diversity, Save the Manatee Club and Defenders of Wildlife in federal court in the Middle District of Florida. 

The EPA, the only defendant, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Copyright 2022 WMFE. To see more, visit WMFE.

WUSF 89.7 depends on donors for the funding it takes to provide you the most trusted source of news and information here in town, across our state, and around the world. Support WUSF now by giving monthly, or make a one-time donation online.