Tag Archives: St. Johns Riverkeeper

Florida Waterkeepers United visit FDEP 2018-08-01

Seven of the fourteen Florida Waterkeepers visited the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) to express our serious concern and a sense of urgency to protect and restore Florida’s rivers, coast, bays, estuaries, lakes, springs, and aquifer, especially about resiliency after hurricanes, harmful algal blooms, BMAPs, and phosphate mines. I congratulated Noah Valenstein on his meteoric rise: only two and a half years ago he was just starting as head of the Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD), and now he’s the head of FDEP.

L-R: Andy Hayslip (Tampa), Georgia Ackerman (Apalachicola), Marty Baum (Indian), Jen Lomberk (Matanzas), Drew Bartlett (FDEP), Whitney Gray (FDEP), Rick Frey (St. Marys), Lisa Rinaman (St. Johns), Noah Valenstein (Sec., FDEP), Shannon Blankinship
L-R: Andy Hayslip (Tampa Bay Waterkeeper), Georgia Ackerman (Apalachicola Riverkeeper), Marty Baum (Indian Riverkeeper), Jen Lomberk (Matanzas Riverkeeper), Drew Bartlett (Deputy Secretary for Ecosystem Restoration, FDEP), Whitney Gray (Administrator, Florida Resilient Coastlines, FDEP), Rick Frey (St. Marys Riverkeeper), Lisa Rinaman (St. Johns Riverkeeper), Noah Valenstein (Secretary, FDEP), Shannon Blankinship (Advocacy Director, St. Johns Riverkeeper), John S. Quarterman (hat, Suwannee Riverkeeper), Tom Frick (back, Director, Division of Environmental Restoration, FDEP); Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS

Press Release: Florida Waterkeepers Unite at FDEP

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Judge rules Florida Amendment 1 funds must be used for land acquisition 2018-06-14

Acquiring lands in a springshed is one of the best ways to protect springs and rivers, and a judge just said the Florida legislature can’t divert funds from that purpose of Florida Amendment 1, which was passed by 75% of the people of Florida.

St. Johns Riverkeeper, blog, 14 June 2018, Legal Victory for Conservation Lands,

On June 15, 2018, Florida Circuit Judge Charles Dodson ruled in favor of environmental organizations that the land conservation constitutional amendment overwhelmingly approved by voters in 2014 requires funding to be used for land acquisition, restoration and management, not for other purposes.

Map of county vote ranges on Florida Amendment 1

Earthjustice, Joe Litte of Florida Defenders of the Environment and the plaintiff organizations— Continue reading

A Resolution Against Phosphate Mines in Florida –Florida Waterkeepers 2017-12-18

Update 2018-11-13: Miami Waterkeeper has signed, bringing it to a round dozen Florida Waterkeepers.

Signers, Resolution

Update 2018-08-18: Calusa Waterkeeper has also signed, bringing it to 11 of the 14 Waterkeepers in Florida. (See also PDF.)

Update 2018-08-01: Five additional signers: Suncoast Waterkeeper, Tampa Bay Waterkeeper, Indian Riverkeeper, St. Marys Riverkeeper, and Collier County Waterkeeper. Seven of us delivered this resolution in person to FDEP Secretary Noah Valenstein.

Delivered via email as PDF to the Union BOCC before their phosphate mine workshop of Monday, December 18, 2017.


A Resolution
Against Phosphate Mines in Florida

WHEREAS, Waterkeeper Alliance Members are obligated and dedicated to protect the water resources, citizens’ interests, and related benefits in their jurisdictions; and

WHEREAS, Resolution WHEREAS, phosphate mines have been shown to threaten and cause actual harm to these resources, interest, and related benefits; and

WHEREAS, there are several phosphate mine projects in various stages of permitting in local, state, and federal agencies including county and city governments, Water Management Districts (WMDs), Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE); and

WHEREAS, there seems to be no public list of current phosphate mines and related facitlities, which include at least

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St Johns Riverkeeper, Suwannee Riverkeeper

In Alachua, 2017 01 17: Lisa Rinaman, St Johns Riverkeeper, and John S. Quarterman, Suwannee Riverkeeper.

This was after SRWMD and SJRWMD passed the NFRWSP. Videos here of what we and many others said before the vote in that joint board meeting.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!

Spot Sabal Trail violations from the air: Indiegogo crowdfunding

To cover the entire 600+ mile length of the Sabal Trail and FSC pipelines Flight area rotated from Alabama through Georgia and Florida to Indiantown will require probably seven small plane flights, so we’ve started a crowdfunding campaign:

Spot Sabal Trail & FSC violations from the air

Flights will be handled by the participating Riverkeepers.

Please follow the link to learn more and to contribute.

If you have a small plane Continue reading

Videos: NFRWSP Plan passed at joint SRWMD-SJRWMD Board Meeting 2017-01-17

Pretty full The playwright could have added a bit more suspense. After listening to almost two dozen public comments, many recommending tabling the North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan (NFRWSP) or a moratorium on new water withdrawal permits, the boards of the Suwannee River Water Management District and the St Johns River Water Management District each voted unanimously to approve.

Here are WWALS videos of each of the speakers, with a few notes, followed by video playlist of the whole thing. Continue reading

Stop Florida ERC from raising water toxin levels 2016-07-26

FDEP could have stuck with U.S. EPA’s recomendations for water quality, but instead did a complicated statistical analysis to excuse raising the amounts of benzene and other toxins in Florida’s waters. Drinking, fishing, swimming: all are affected. The decision may be made 9AM this Tuesday morning, July 26th 2016, by the Environmental Regulation Commission (ERC) in Tallahassee. Please call or write its members, your newspaper or TV stations, or come to the meeting early for the demonstration and then attend (see below for details).

The ERC has cancelled all its other monthly meetings so far this year, yet Continue reading

Two strikes against eminent domain for Kinder Morgan’s Palmetto Pipeline

KMI was already trying to sell off its Palmetto petroleum products pipeline project across coastal Georgia before:

That’s two strikes in Georgia, and another in South Carolina. Three strikes, KMI!

But Florida, watch out. Continue reading

Riverkeepers v. Palmetto Pipeline

Kinder Morgan wants to run a 360-mile Palmetto pipeline from South Carolina through Georgia to Florida, but has found organized opposition in Push Back the Pipeline:

We oppose the Palmetto Project. Our coalition includes Savannah Riverkeeper, Altamaha Riverkeeper, Ogeechee Riverkeeper, Satilla Riverkeeper, St. Johns Riverkeeper, One Hundred Miles, and Environment Georgia. Kinder Morgan would build 360 miles of new pipeline across land and rivers in SC and on GA’s coast, a risk we just can’t take. Building another pipeline is a risk to Continue reading