Thursday morning, the day after Hurricane Michael passed by to the west and north of the Suwannee River Basin, only Gopher River and the New River gauge near Lake Butler were in Action Stage.
The bigger they are, the harder they fall. Mosaic Co., market cap $11.5 billion, just lost to DeSoto County, Florida, annual budget $84.3 million. Maybe this will help Bradford County to do the right thing about phosphate mines.
Craig Pittman, Tampa Bay Times, 26 July 2018, Mosaic spent 20 years planning new phosphate mine. DeSoto County has rejected it,
Mosaic Co., the world’s largest phosphate company, has spent two decades lining up a new mine in DeSoto County as part of a broader effort to move its operations south.
But DeSoto County commissioners last week slammed the door in the company’s face, voting 4-1 against rezoning 18,000 acres from agricultural to mining.
A major concern: Continue reading
U.C. Berkeley student Alan Toth made a film about environmental concerns embroiling a small town in North Florida.
Mining Phosphorus explores the subject of phosphate mining in Florida. Phosphate rock is our main source of phosphorus, one of the most critical elements in modern agriculture, but the practice of mining phosphate produces significant environmental concerns, including literal mountains of toxic waste.
You will probably recognize many of the people in this trailer. In the first view of protesters, there’s Continue reading
The phosphate mine agenda item he expected for Gilchrist BOCC this afternoon is not there, Mike Roth, President of Our Santa Fe River (OSFR), called to say. So I’m not going. Instead I sent them the letter you see below (see also PDF).
June 18, 2018
To: Gilchrist Board of County Commissioners
Sharon Langford <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
“D. Ray Harrison” <email@example.com>,
Todd Gray <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
Marion Poitevint <email@example.com>,
Kenrick Thomas <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
Cc: County Administrator Bobby Crosby <email@example.com>
Re: Phosphate mines
Dear Chairman, Commissioners, and staff,
While I applaud your decision to discuss opioid litigation at your meeting today, I was a little surprised to find Continue reading
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.
Earthjustice, Joe Litte of Florida Defenders of the Environment and the plaintiff organizations— Continue reading
Mike Roth, president of Our Santa Fe River, requests:
On Monday, June 18, at the Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners meeting in Trenton which starts at 4PM, we will get the opportunity to appeal to the Board to issue a “letter of concern” regarding the phosphate mine applied for in Bradford and Union Counties. As you certainly know, OSFR has stood in opposition to this mine on the grounds that it is a substantial threat to the health of the Santa Fe River and to all those who live by the river and all those who use the river recreationally. Further, it threatens the aquifer that is recharged by the river and as such, anyone and anything that uses groundwater.
When: 4PM (hearing 4:45 PM), Monday, June 18, 2018
Where: Board of County Commissioners Meeting Facility,
210 South Main Street, Trenton, Florida
What: Letter of concern about HPS II Phosphate Mine in Bradford and Union Counties, Florida
Gilchrist County Commissioners from left to right: Sharon A. Langford, Kenrick Thomas, Todd Gray, D Ray Harrison, Jr., and Marion Poitevint
Gilchrist County is downstream Continue reading
Instead of giving Sabal Trail a five-month extension, FERC should revoke Sabal Trail’s Certificate of Convenience and Necessity, as the U.S. District Court already ordered. Sabal Trail no longer has the customers for 90+% of its gas on which that FERC’s February 2 Order depended, not since Sabal Trail dropped Duke Energy Florida (DEF) from its customer index on New Year’s Day.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) and Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz shake hands during a joint press conference after their meeting in Warsaw on January 27, 2018. / AFP / Wojtek RADWANSKI
It’s time to stop the fossil fuel industry using Sabal Trail as a political tool to undermine the overall energy stability and security of the U.S. southeast for the profit of a few companies from Texas and Canada. Just like the U.S. State Department recommends for Europe, FERC should seek to diversify energy supplies by getting on with solar power onshore and wind power offshore in the Sunshine State, Georgia, and everywhere else.
What’s that “one additional M&R facility,” Sabal Trail? Is it the one in Suwannee County to feed your fracked gas through Continue reading
Steve Pieczenik called the Union County Commissioners brave, honest, respectful, efficient, and transparent public servants. Jim Tatum said they had foresight and had taken appropriate steps. Both complimented the many mine opponents who showed up and spoke their piece briefly and effectively. Here are a couple of reports from Union BOCC’s Monday workshop about the HPS II phosphate mine.
Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS on Southwings flight, 17 Sep. 2017, N from New River across mine site: l. New River P. r. Beasley; left center prison; top left Lake Butler, 09:55:21, 29.9550800, -82.3183000
The next one is coming up 5PM Tuesday, January 16, 2018, at which Union BOCC is scheduled to vote on extending its moratorium against phosphate mining, as well as reviewing their proposed Comprehensive Plan changes.
Meanwhile, across the New River, Bradford BOCC Continue reading
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.
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, 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 leastContinue reading
Union County, Florida apparently takes its duties to the public seriously, with a series of meetings through the next year about mining (including phosphate mining) in its Comprehensive Plan and Land Development Regulations (LDR). People in Union County and everywhere who don’t want another phosphate mine leaching into groundwater, rivers, and springs and driving away other jobs, please show up at the meetings or write to the Union Board of County Commissioners (BOCC). For example, start by advocating the Commissioners extend their moratorium against phosphate mining.