environment

Dike Repair Money Coming Amid Algae Woes

Jul 9, 2018

As calls grow for state action to deal with toxic algae blooms in Southeast and Southwest Florida, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced funding is in place to speed repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dike around Lake Okeechobee.

Smack in the middle of the Florida peninsula, Lake Okeechobee, one of the largest lakes in the U.S., has a nagging problem. Nearly every year now, large blooms of algae form in the lake.

On a recent visit, even Steve Davis, a senior ecologist with the Everglades Foundation, was surprised.

"Oh my gosh," he exclaimed, "look how thick this blue-green mat is right here."

Updated at 6:01 p.m. ET

Scott Pruitt will no longer lead the Environmental Protection Agency, President Trump announced Thursday afternoon via Twitter.

"I have accepted the resignation of Scott Pruitt," Trump tweeted. "Within the Agency Scott has done an outstanding job, and I will always be thankful to him for this," Trump also wrote.

Carl Juste / Miami Herald

If current sea-level rise trends continue, the ocean that makes many South Florida cities desirable places to live may become an existential threat.

Mark Hedden / markhedden.com

Is there anything more Floridian than a flamingo?

They’re everywhere. Pink plastic ornaments dotting lawns. On cocktail swizzlers and motel signs.

Scientists think they can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by tweaking the food that cows eat. A recent experiment from the University of California, Davis suggests that adding seaweed to cattle feed can dramatically decrease their emissions of the potent gas methane.

Jessica Weiss

Matthew Schwartz, the director of the South Florida Wildlands Association, stands in a patch of marshy grass on a large stretch of land in northwest Miami-Dade county. Cypress trees dot the landscape, which sits just a few miles from the Everglades. The water is about six inches high, enough to cover his shoes.

With hurricane season in full swing, staff at Florida's evacuation shelters are busy making preparations like what to do for specials needs evacuees and where to send victims of domestic violence. But this year they're practicing for a new issue — what to do if immigration officials want to take a look around.

Kate Stein / WLRN

This year, Miami-Dade County's arsenal of mosquito-fighting technology includes traps, spraying backpacks -- and mosquito-eating fish. 

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.

Kate Stein / WLRN

Most business owners in South and Central Florida think renewable energy makes economic sense, according to a recent survey from the Environmental Defense Fund.

The non-profit polled 1,200 business leaders and residents from South Florida and along the I-4 corridor in the central part of the state. Two-thirds of respondents said getting energy from sources like solar and wind is a smart business decision.

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

Worries Bloom Over Lake Okeechobee Algae

Jun 25, 2018

There are new fears about algae blooms in Lake Okeechobee.

Adamfirst via Wikimedia Commons

Traffic, sea-level rise and the Everglades are colliding after Miami-Dade commissioners voted Wednesday to advance a potential expressway extension to state regulators.

The proposal to extend State Road 836 aims to reduce traffic for commuters in the West Kendall area. Driving the 20 or so miles to downtown Miami during rush hour can take an hour and a half -- or more.

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