Friday, March 20, 2009

Florida environmental and wildlife news for the week ending 3-20-09


Florida growth watchdog might lose fangs in legislative assault
By Kevin Spear
Orlando Sentinel
The watchdog agency that has overseen growth in Florida for decades could be dismantled as state lawmakers look for ways to cut the budget and revive an ailing construction industry.

Threat arises to dismantle agency controlling growth in state
By Lloyd Dunkelberger
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
A serious threat has emerged in the Legislature to dismantle the Department of Community Affairs, the agency that has for decades regulated growth in the state.

Environmentalists fight DCA Merger Plan
By Whitney Ray
Capitol News Service
A plan to merge the Department of Community Affairs with the Department of State to save money has environmentalists outraged.

We're dying from plague of vacant buildings, homes
By Mike Thomas
Orlando Sentinel
This is like watching an emphysema patient try to cure himself by smoking more.

State of the Birds Report 2009
Related Lakeland Ledger article: Florida species prospects mixed in national bird study
Related statement from National Audubon Society: U.S. birds report sends environmental wake-up call
This report makes clear the need for urgent individual, collective and government action, and leaves little doubt that taking action can make a difference.

Editorial cartoon by Jim Morin, Miami Herald


$9 billion estimate for Everglades work has 'no credibility,' supporter of U.S. Sugar deal says
By Paul Quinlan
Palm Beach Post
Related: Water manager: Financial changes may allow involvement by Wall Street hedge fund manager in U.S. Sugar deal
Forget $3 billion, $4 billion or even $5 billion. It could cost the South Florida Water Management District as much as $9.1 billion to make use of the 180,000 acres of farmland that Gov. Charlie Crist has proposed buying from U.S. Sugar Corp. to save the Everglades, according to a consultant's report commissioned by opponents of the deal.

State defends its plan to buy U.S. Sugar land
By Kate Spinner
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
The battle over Gov. Charlie Crist's Everglades restoration legacy landed in court Monday, as the state defended its plan to purchase 180,000 acres of U.S. Sugar land from challenges by Florida Crystals, a Clewiston citizens group and the Miccosukee tribe.

Everglades visit reinforces Gov. Charlie Crist's stance for land deal
By Andy Reid
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Darkening financial clouds over Gov. Charlie Crist's blockbuster Everglades land deal couldn't compete Friday with the vast number of birds the governor said he saw on a visit to the famed River of Grass.

State wildlife panel proposes ban on Fla.’s wild turtle trade
By David Fleshler
Bradenton Herald
A round-the-world trade in Florida’s wild turtles would be shut down under a proposal by the state wildlife commission to protect them from the demand for their meat in China, Vietnam and other Asian countries.

U.S. Navy to Put Endangered Whales at Risk Via Sonar
By Natural Resources Defense Council
Opposing Views
There's been a lot of press about the sighting of 11 North Atlantic right whales off the Florida coast.

Revamped springs bill passes committee
By Bruce Ritchie
Florida Environmental News
A bill that would require advanced septic systems and sewage treatment plants in counties with major springs was approved by a Senate committee on Tuesday.

Dancing in the Light of Florida
By Alan Farago
Last weekend, the spiritual advisor to the Dalai Lama visited Florida, a state that does not lack for religious affiliations.

Controversial Mirasol project gets nod from Collier planning commission
By Eric Staats
Naples News
Environmental advocates lost a second vote Thursday on whether a controversial golf course community should be allowed in a flowway in northern Collier County.

DEP offers mid-week closures of 58 state parks
By Bruce Ritchie
Florida Environmental News
Visitors to 58 Florida state parks could see closed gates three days a week under a budget-cutting proposal requested by Senate leaders.

Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park, where rare wild things live
By Barbara Behrendt
St. Pete Times
One recent, sunny day, a group of observers gathered around the newest exhibit at the Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park.

March 21 is Save the Florida Panther Day
Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has issued a proclamation, extending greetings and best wishes to all who observe Save the Florida Panther Day March 21.

Proposed nuclear plant, funds spark protest
By Amanda Welch
Central Florida Future
Higher energy bills for Orlando Utilities Commission customers could help fund a controversial nuclear power plant, spurring demand for more public input by nuclear energy opponents.

The Sunshine State Is Going Solar
By Armando J. Olivera and Debbie Harrison
Tampa Tribune
A power company CEO and the head of a leading environmental organization will never agree on everything, but on one essential element of Florida's future we are absolutely united: the need to bring more solar energy to the state.

Lakeland utility first in Florida to use purchase agreements for solar power
By Asjylyn Loder
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
When it comes to solar power, it isn't the sunshine holding Florida back. It's the money.

Wildwood Preservation Society is a non-profit 501(c)(4) project of the Advocacy Consortium for the Common Good. Click here to learn more.

"it's all connected"

No comments: