Rødt tidevand i Florida

Fra naturens hånd flyder ferskvand fra Orlando i nord til Everglades i syd. Vandet fra Kisimmee floden ender i den store Lake Okeechobee, inden det fortsætter sydover.


Den resulterende “River of Grass” er nu bremset af  sukkerrørsdyrkerne, der tager ferskvandet og erstatter det med forurenet drænvand, som via kanaler ledes direkte ud i havet. 


Græsfloden selv er derfor ved at løbe tør. Floridas kyster lider samtidig under massiv algeblomst og fiskedød forårsaget af det næringsrige afløbsvand fra landbruget.


Illustrationer fra www.evergladestrust.org


Heldigvis ser der nu langt om længe ud til at blæse mildere vinde for Everglades og Kissimmi. Den af mange forhadte og i hvert fald miljøfjendske, republikanske guvernør Rick Scott har efter otte destruktive år på posten måttet vige pladsen for den nye, stadig republikanske, men langt mere miljøorienterede demokrat Ron DeSantis.

Herunder er hans dugfriske fyreseddel til de hidtil styrende myndigheder i South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD), som beskyldes for at have tildelt sukkerrørsproducenter i området ulovlige rettigheder til vandindvinding.

Det udsendte han på sin tredje arbejdsdag efter indsættelsen som ny guvernør:

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Dejligt, at man godt kan være republikaner og miljøvenlig på samme tid. Ron DeSantis sagde i samme forbindelse, at han ville annullere mindst 80 af sin forgængers Rick Scott’s sidste-øjebliks udnævnelser.

“For far too long the South Florida Water Management District has been more accountable to special interests than to the people of Florida”.

Eller på dansk:

“Alt for længe har South Florida Water Management District været styret mere af særinteresser end af hensynet til befolkningen i Florida.”

Ron DeSantis adresserede ligeledes klimaforandringerne, som hans egen præsident, Donald Trump, ellers konsekvent fornægter.


Ron DeSantis’ “executive order”

  • Dedicates $2.5 billion over the next four years for Everglades restoration and protection of water resources. It’s a $1 billion increase in spending over the previous four years and the highest level of funding for restoration in Florida’s history.
  • Creates a Blue-Green Algae Task Force, charged with focusing on expediting progress toward reducing the adverse impacts of blue-green algae blooms now and over the next five years.
  • Instructs the South Florida Water Management District to immediately start the next phase of the EAA reservoir design and ensure the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approves the project according to schedule.
  • Creates an Office of Environmental Accountability and Transparency, charged with organizing and directing integrated scientific research and analysis to ensure that all agency actions are aligned with key environmental priorities.
  • Appoints a chief science officer to coordinate and prioritize scientific data, research, monitoring and analysis of needs to ensure alignment with current and emerging environmental concerns most pressing to Floridians.
  • Expedites key Everglades projects including the C-44 reservoir and stormwater treatment area, C-43 reservoir, Tamiami Trail and additional projects necessary to protect waterways.
  • Directs the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to establish a septic conversion and remediation grant program with a local government match requirement.
  • Creates the Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection to help prepare Florida’s coastal communities and habitats for impacts from sea level rise by providing funding, technical assistance and coordination among state, regional and local entities.
  • Directs state agencies to take necessary actions to adamantly oppose all offshore oil and gas activities off every coast in Florida and hydraulic fracturing in Florida.

Få mere viden om problemerne og fiskeriet i Florida i artiklen “Florida’s Everglades