Tag: indian river lagoon
House Committee Passes BrIan Mast’s Northern Estuaries Restoration Plan, $100 Million for Estuary Protection
This week, U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, R-Fla., advanced seven pieces of legislation to address water quality and water infrastructure needs in Florida as part of the “Water Resources Development Act.” The biennial piece of legislation,...
On Tuesday, the Bipartisan Congressional Estuary Caucus, whose leadership includes two Florida Republicans, brought out a resolution to honor this week as National Estuaries Week. U.S. Rep. Bill Posey, R-Fla., offered the resolution with the...
Members of the Florida congressional delegation called on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator Richard Spinrad to support Florida’s manatees by aiding efforts to improve water quality and prevent harmful algal blooms in the Indian River Lagoon estuary.
According to Bonamici’s office, the bill “will strengthen federal research on blue carbon and take steps to protect and restore coastal blue carbon ecosystems" by creating a “national map and inventory of coastal blue carbon ecosystems and their sequestration potential, study the effects of climate change and other environmental stressors on rates of carbon sequestration, improve and expand protections for existing coastal blue carbon ecosystems, and restore degraded ecosystems.”
Between January 1 and February 26 of this year, the state recorded 403 manatee deaths, about triple the normal level. According to recent reports, manatees may be starving due to a decline in seagrass, their primary food source.
Crist wrote the USFWS, urging it to declare a Marine Mammal Unusual Mortality Event (UME), which would have more resources focused on determining why the increase of manatee deaths.
The bill draws from regional examples of related, successful specialty plates for Indian River Lagoon and the Tampa Bay Estuary. Funds from the sale of the license plate will be directed to The Miami Foundation to administer toward initiatives supporting habitat restoration, pollution prevention and environmental education and awareness initiatives.
This week, the House overwhelmingly passed U.S. Rep. Tom Malinowski’s, D-NJ, “Protect and Restore America’s Estuaries Act” on a 355-62 vote. All of the opposition came from the Republican ranks with the exception of libertarian-minded U.S. Rep. Justin Amash, I-Mich.
“The state of Florida essentially has 410 cities with their own rules and regulations or nothing at all when it comes to local fertilizer ordinances,” said Eric Brown, the director of agronomy of Massey Services.
Waltz’s office stressed that the Sunshine State would benefit from changing the formula and maintained that it would not add to federal spending. Back in 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency recommended that Congress change the formula.
“The unprecedented scale of the climate crisis requires that we act immediately, and our ocean and coastal ecosystems can be part of the solution,” Bonamici said. “Blue carbon refers to the powerful ability of coastal ecosystems to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it for centuries to millennia in plants and soil.
Fine championed a similar proposal last year but was not able to get it across the finish line.
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