Friday, March 27, 2009

Florida environmental and wildlife news for the week ending 3-27-09


Gov. Charlie Crist to downsize Everglades-U.S. Sugar deal
By Curtis Morgan and Mary Ellen Klas
Miami Herald
His hand forced by a failing economy, Gov. Charlie Crist is poised to dramatically downsize his proposed Big Sugar buyout -- and his vision for Everglades restoration.

Alliance urges action on renewable energy
By Bruce Ritchie
Florida Environmental News
A coalition of environmental groups and businesses today urged legislative leaders to take action on a proposed renewable energy requirement for utilities.

DCA Could Be On The Chopping Block
By Gary Pinnell
Tampa Tribune
Take action: Click here to sign on to Progress Florida's letter to the Florida Legislature.
Jim Polatty has fought for decades with the Department of Community Affairs. But Highlands County's chief planner doesn't want the state agency dismembered.

Bill would limit state's ability to stop wetlands destruction
By Craig Pittman and Matthew Waite
St. Pete Times
A bill that would drastically limit the state's ability to stop wetlands from destruction has passed a legislative committee.

Bill making it easier to pave over Florida's wetlands called 'recipe for fraud'
By Paul Quinlan
Palm Beach Post
Developers who want to fill in wetlands would find getting the necessary permits much easier under a bill working its way through the legislature.

Editorial Cartoon by Andy Marlette, Pensacola News Journal


Gov. Crist promotes polices to curb gases but trips leave big carbon footprint
By David Fleshler
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
In March 2007, Gov. Charlie Crist took a 45-minute flight on a state-owned Cessna Citation Bravo from Tallahassee to Bradenton, where he congratulated a school district for purchasing hybrid-electric buses.

Lawmakers power down Crist's climate proposals
By Jim Saunders
Daytona Beach News-Journal
Gov. Charlie Crist's proposals to fight global warming are gasping for air.

Jailed Activists Seek to Free Enslaved Environment
By Howard Lisnoff
Looking east from the top stories of the Palm Beach County Courthouse, the sea is singular and impressive, filling the entire horizon and appearing to play teasingly with the land.

Bill introduced to have nuclear power included as "clean" energy
By Asjylyn Loder
St. Pete Times
So what is "clean" energy? Sen. Charlie Dean, R-Inverness, thinks nuclear power should count.

Florida's Bright (Green) Idea: Renewable Standards
By Russell Ray
Tampa Tribune
Thirty-one states have one. Florida may be the next state to adopt a standard for generating electricity from renewable resources.

As Florida shifts to solar, a fight looms
By Zac Anderson
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Billions of dollars are at stake in a battle under way in Florida over who profits from the pending expansion of solar energy: Big energy companies or individuals and businesses with extra roof space.

The Rooftop Revolution
By Mariah Blake
A little-known policy is turning sleepy central Florida into a green energy hub. Could it do the same for America at large?

Florida Celebrates Oceans Day
Press Release
Florida Oceans Council via
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) joined a host of public and private partners today to celebrate Florida Oceans Day at the Capitol.

Revised U.S. Sugar deal could drop price to $500 million
By Paul Quinlan and Michael C. Bender
Palm Beach Post
Related editorial: Reality on U.S. Sugar deal
Gov. Charlie Crist is scaling back considerably his extraordinary bid to save the Everglades, as a worsening economy has rendered the $1.34 billion deal with U.S. Sugar Corp. unaffordable, people familiar with the negotiations say.

A rare sight: Wood storks, other wading birds enjoy feeding frenzy at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary
By Eric Staats
Ft. Myers News-Press
Mother Nature is putting on her greatest show in years at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary as endangered wood storks and a host of wading birds stage a feeding frenzy.

Commissioners share vision on growth plans
By Will Brown
Tallahassee Democrat
Commissioners at the city and county level want smart, well-planned growth, not a collection of commercial entities that are as unorganized as the moss that collects on Tallahassee's oak trees.

Protecting land and water is good for business
By Jeff Danter
Miami Herald
When my family and I pulled into Bahia Honda State Park in December, the parking lot was packed, and the beach was filled with bathers -- all of whom had paid park entrance fees.

Negative Bond Ratings Hurt Florida Forever Chances
Florida Audubon News
A report on tax revenues linked to Florida Forever bonds downgrades the state’s credit ranking.

The Strip Mall Protection Act of’09
By Daniel Ruth
St. Pete Times
Here's the problem with all of these annoying wetlands: They're so …so … uh, well, they're wet is what they are.

Anti-environment bills a dangerous ruse
Miami Herald
Granted, the seven groups composing the Florida Forever Coalition have a vested interest in conserving undeveloped state land, so their latest study naturally reflects their views.

Another really bad bill
Pensacola News Journal
Every spring, the Florida Legislature flowers with reborn efforts to reverse hard-won environmental protections with really bad legislation.

Stop Florida turtle harvest
St. Pete Times
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission next month will consider banning commercial harvesting of wild freshwater turtles. So it should.

End water giveaway
St. Pete Times
Bottled water companies have quite the deal.

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

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