environment

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced Tuesday that he wants the Senate to vote on a massive plan to fight climate change.

Patrick Farrell / Miami Herald

A judge rejected efforts by South Florida water managers to end federal oversight of Everglades water quality on Monday, telling their attorneys the move was “premature” so soon after a new governor took office.

Everglades
Roberto Koltun / El Nuevo Herald

A long time Florida developer who was recently appointed to the South Florida Water Management District by Governor Ron DeSantis violated county policy when he built a fence in a wetland, according to Broward County documents.

Ron Bergeron, who is known as "Alligator Ron," was issued a six-count violation signed Feb. 7, 2019, related to wetlands in Southwest Ranches.

The South Florida Sun Sentinel reports the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will vote Feb. 20 on a plan to limit the practice and protect swimmers.

For a nonbinding resolution with an uncertain future, the Green New Deal is getting a lot of attention, along with a decidedly mixed reaction.

Dozens of Democrats on Thursday introduced the measure, an ambitious framework for future legislation designed to eliminate the U.S. carbon footprint by 2030.

TIFFANY TOMPKINS / Bradenton Herald via Miami Herald

Florida’s coastal waters are entirely free of red tide algal blooms, according to the latest round of tests conducted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The report marks a new low for red tide levels in Florida since the most recent bloom began in October 2017.

The Karenia Brevis algae that causes red tide was only observed in four Southwest Florida water samples over the past week. The samples contained extremely low numbers of algae cells per liter, far below concentrations that would cause a harmful bloom.

Environmental Protection Agency

When Key West city commissioners approved a ban on the sale of some sunscreens, some said it wasn't just to protect the reef that has protected the island for centuries.

Commissioner Jimmy Weekley said Key West is leading the continental U.S., and is already receiving global attention for its action.

"Key West, the 3-by-5-mile island, is going to take a major step to help preserve our environment — the environment of every citizen of the world," he said.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Key West has become the first place in the mainland U.S. to ban the sale of sunscreens containing two chemicals that have been found in some studies to harm corals.

"There are thousands and thousands of various alternative sunscreens that can be used. But we only have one reef," said Commissioner Jimmy Weekley, one of the sponsors of the ordinance.

It won final approval by a 6-1 vote Tuesday night.

Court Clears Way For Drilling In Everglades Oil Well Near Miramar

Feb 5, 2019
Tom Hudson / WLRN

Overturning a decision by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, an appeals court Tuesday ordered the state to issue a permit to a major Broward County landowner that wants to drill an exploratory oil well in the Everglades.

A three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal ruled the department improperly rejected a recommended order by an administrative law judge, who said in 2017 that a permit should be approved for Kanter Real Estate LLC.

A rare whale was found dead in the waters of Florida's Everglades National Park. 

More Oil Drilling Proposed For Southern Florida

Feb 3, 2019
Courtesy Sun Sentinel

The boom in U.S. oil production may one day extend to southern Florida, where several companies have proposed operations to extract the valuable black liquid from some of the most sensitive habitats in the state.

No drilling is imminent, since these projects require extensive permitting and preparation. And the plans come as the state looks more likely to pass a ban on fracking, a technique that has unlocked vast oil deposits at what many environmentalists see as an unacceptable cost to water supplies.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

The Miami Blue is the Rasputin of butterflies.

But biologists are hoping for a happier ending for the Miami Blue than the early 20th Century Russian mystic who survived one assassination attempt after another … before he was eventually killed.

Miami Blue butterflies were once common throughout coastal South Florida. But by the early 1990s, you could only find them on Key Biscayne. Then Hurricane Andrew came through in 1992 and that colony disappeared. People thought they were extinct.

Roberto Koltun / El Nuevo Herald

The environment has marked much of Governor Ron DeSantis’s first month in office.

 

He signed a sweeping executive order that pledges $2.5 billion over four years for Everglades restoration and improving water quality. To that end, he’s demanded the entire board of the South Florida Management District to resign.

Ron DeSantis Unveils $91.3 Billion Budget. It Boosts Spending For Education, Environment

Feb 1, 2019
Al Diaz / Miami Herald

Gov. Ron DeSantis is proposing a boost in per-student spending, an overhaul in how the state rewards teachers, improvements to the state’s aging transportation network and more money to save the Everglades.

plastic straws
Fairywren/Flickr Creative Commons

Local governments wouldn’t be able to regulate single-use plastic straws under a measure filed Thursday in the House.

The proposal (HB 603) by Rep. Anthony Sabatini, R-Howey-in-the-Hills, says “a municipality, county, or other local governmental entity may not adopt, enforce, or implement any ordinance, rule, or law that would further restrict a food service establishment from distributing single-use plastic straws to customers.”

Pages