BROOKSVILLE — All over Florida, clashes are erupting over how much water can be diverted from the state's springs to keep development going. The latest battleground was Tuesday's meeting of the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
Despite opposition from more than 30 speakers, the water district's board voted 9-1 to allow the flow of Crystal River and the 70 springs that make up Kings Bay to be cut by up to 11 percent....
ST. PETERSBURG — Every year the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation picks 11 properties to highlight as the most threatened historic properties in the state.
This year, three of those sites are in the Tampa Bay area.
And one of them — Egmont Key — made the list because it is threatened by climate change.
"This is the first time a site has made the list due to the threat of sea level rise," said Clay Henderson, the president of the trust's board of trustees. "We see this as a new threat."...
In 2011, when Gov. Rick Scott picked Charles W. "Chuck" Roberts III to sit on the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission,, the selection made news because Roberts had had several run-ins with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. ...
New storm surge model means new hurricane evacuation maps for Tampa Bay (they're just not ready yet)05/13/17Hurricanes
New, up-to-date storm surge data from the National Hurricane Center has thrown a monkey wrench into Tampa Bay's evacuation planning just two weeks before the start of hurricane season.
More residents are likely to be in evacuation zones than ever before. But at this point, emergency management officials from around the bay area said they do not know yet which residents and which areas will be affected....
Against all odds, Florida Legislature approves Lake O reservoir bill, but will Congress do its part?05/05/17Environment
Against all odds, the bill to build a new reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee to alleviate toxic algae blooms passed both houses of the Florida Legislature and Gov. Rick Scott signed it into law Tuesday.
Believe or not, the next step could be even harder: Convincing Congress to say yes, too....
Florida Forever? More like Florida Never after Legislature spends zero dollars on land-buying program05/05/17Environment
Once again, the Florida Legislature has turned the politically popular Florida Forever program into Florida Never.
The budget that legislative leaders have approved — but which Gov. Rick Scott has yet to sign — calls for spending zero dollars on the Florida Forever program to buy up environmentally sensitive land.
That's not what the voters had in mind when they approved Amendment 1 in 2014 by an overwhelming margin, environmental advocates say....
A bill irequiring industry and government to notify the public quickly of any pollution problems has passed both houses of the Legislature and is headed for Gov. Rick Scott. Scott, who called for the change in the law, will definitely sign it.
The Pentagon says maintaining the current moratorium on oil and gas activities in the Gulf of Mexico beyond 2022 is “essential for developing and sustaining our nation's future combat capabilities," according to a letter sent to U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach.
The Department of Defense "cannot overstate the vital importance of maintaining this moratorium,” Anthony M. Kurta, the acting Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, wrote in the letter, released Monday by Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson's office....
Earthjustice, representing three environmental groups, has sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers over its management of the river system at the heart of the long-running Tri-State Water Wars.
The suit, filed in federal court in Washington, D.C., on behalf of the National Wildlife Federation, the Florida Wildlife Federation and the Apalachicola Riverkeeper, contends the Corps failled to properly protect the environment with its plan for managing freshwater flows through the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River system in the coming decades....
They tried hiring professionals. They tried training people to compete in a big roundup. They even brought in tribesmen from India.
Now Florida wildlife officials who want to rid the state of invasive snakes are trying something even more offbeat: prizes for anyone in the public who picks up a python.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced Monday that it's launching a "Python Pickup Program," in which anybody who captures a python in the wild can simply submit a photo of the snake he or she caught in order to win....
ST. PETERSBURG — Florida scientists will ride their research vessel to Cuba next month to take measurements of its coastal waters before any oil spill ruins them.
One of the major problems with the 2010 BP oil spill, scientists say, is that no one — not the government, not the oil companies, not even universities — had taken baseline measurements of what conditions were like in the Gulf of Mexico before the Deepwater Horizon disaster....
Deepwater Horizon: Seven years after explosion and oil spill, study finds cleanup workers got sicker04/20/17Environment
On the seventh anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, the health impacts that the spewing oil had on the people who came into contact with it are still raising questions about how the cleanup was handled.
The latest studies by the National Institutes of Health found that the thousands of workers who came into contact with the oil that coated the coastlines of four states in 2010 were more susceptible to health woes during the cleanup, according to Dale Sandler, chief of the NIH's epidemiology branch....
Florida will not hold another bear hunt until at least 2019, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission decided Wednesday.
A motion to hold a hunt this year failed on a 4-3 vote. Then the commissioners voted unanimously to ask their staff to update the agency's bear management plan, including a possible hunt, two years from now.
The votes came amid the continued uproar caused by the decision in 2015 to approve Florida's first bear hunt in 21 years after a series of bear maulings. That hunt went forward despite overwhelming public opposition and repeated questions about whether the science behind the decision was adequate....
UPDATE: Florida will not hold another bear hunt until 2019 at the earliest, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission decided Wednesday.
A motion to set quotas for bear hunters in each region of the state for this year failed on a 4-3 vote. Then the commissioners voted unanimously to ask their staff to report back with an update on their bear management plan, including a possible hunt, in two years. That motion passed unanimously....
On the eve of a Florida FIsh and Wildlife Conservation Commission meeting where bears are on the agenda, the federal wildlife agency has weighed in with an announcement that Florida's bears do not qualify as endangered....