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Delivered: March 2017

We’ve had a busy March!

  • Our supporters (like you!) submitted over 10,000 comments asking for stronger reef protections in the Port Everglades expansion project.
  • We’ve exposed the Army Corps for distributing “alternative facts” to the public in both Port Miami and Port Everglades.
  • We’ve helped get the ball rolling on a plastic grocery bag ban in Coral Gables to reduce marine debris.
  • And we got to hang out with Phillippe Cousteau, Jr. on World Water Day by collecting water quality samples with local schools at the Biscayne Nature Center!

The Inaugural Porter Prize: Honoring Water Champions

At this year's State of the Water event, Miami Waterkeeper presented the inaugural Porter Prize. This prize will be granted yearly to individuals who demonstrate outstanding commitment and service in protecting South Florida’s watershed. The Porter Prize is named after an individual who has dedicated thousands of hours to Miami Waterkeeper's mission and who is deeply dedicated to protecting the overall health of Biscayne Bay, James M. Porter, Esq.

 


HSBC Employees Restore Native Coastal Habitat with Miami Waterkeeper

A group of dedicated HSBC employee volunteers helped us out on March 7th to remove an excessive amount of invasive species at Virginia Key Beach Park! HSBC and Miami Waterkeeper have partnered on numerous volunteer outings where HSBC employees give back to the environment. Check out what the group accomplished this time around!


Miami Waterkeeper’s State of the Water 2020

On Wednesday evening, March 11th, 2020, Miami Waterkeeper hosted our second annual State of the Water address. An intimate group of community leaders and members of the public were welcomed by two of our very own Junior Ambassadors at the front doors of the Coral Reef Yacht Club. Attendees enjoyed cocktails and conversation prior to Miami Waterkeeper, Dr. Rachel Silverstein's, State of the Water address.

 


Water Quality Testing Update: New "Special Status" for COVID-19 Impacts

Miami Waterkeeper's routine water quality monitoring program involves weekly sampling from 8 sites around Biscayne Bay. The samples that are collected are analyzed for fecal indicator bacteria. When concentrated in excess, this bacteria can result in swim advisories. Each week, the Miami Waterkeeper teams posts the water quality sampling results on our 8 sites and an additional 31 sampling sites on our free online app Swim Guide

Due to safety measures regarding COVID-19, and following the Center of Disease Control’s (CDC) recommendations, Miami Waterkeeper AND Florida Department of Health will be suspending water quality sampling for the time being. Miami Waterkeeper has put a 'Special Status' on all of the Swim Guide beaches for the South-East region we manage.

 

 

Currently, Miami-Dade AND Broward Counties have issued mandatory beach closures (read the full announcement HERE for Miami-Dade county and the State Executive Order HERE for Broward and Palm Beach counties). As a safety measure Miami Waterkeeper is classifying all beaches with a 'Special Status' on the Swim Guide app/website. Governor DeSantis has given local authorities the discretion to close beaches and parks and with this comes a suspension to the Florida Healthy Beaches Program until parks and beaches reopen. 


Miami Waterkeeper Heads to DC for Ocean Conservancy Fly-In

Miami Waterkeeper participated in Ocean Conservancy’s annual D.C. fly-in! General Counsel, Kelly Cox, represented Miami Waterkeeper in Washington D.C. as she spoke with members of Congress about the importance of supporting the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) budget. The Trump administration recently proposed cuts to the Agency’s funding by 13%. A diverse range of industries and organizations rely on NOAA’s ocean, coastal, fisheries, and Great Lakes programs. In fact, the United States ocean economy contributes $352 billion annually to the nation’s GDP and supports 3 million jobs, according to the Ocean Conservancy.

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Scientific Evidence Supports Fertilizer Regulation in South Florida

Residential lawn fertilization is estimated to be the second-largest source of household nitrogen in the United States. Nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus from fertilizers can pollute waterways and cause environmental problems such as algae blooms, which kill wildlife, harm humans, and smother seagrass. In fact, Biscayne Bay already suffers from algae blooms and seagrass die-offs. See Miami Dade County's report on seagrass die-offs HERE


City of Miami Passes Major Water Quality Law

On Thursday, the City of Miami Commission unanimously passed an ordinance that will significantly reduce fertilizer pollution from reaching our waterways. Miami Waterkeeper worked closely with Commissioner Ken Russell and the City's Office of Resilience and the Sierra Club to develop the ordinance which aims to lessen nutrient inputs to our waterways and Biscayne Bay. Excess nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus found in fertilizer, can lead to algae blooms which turn the water green, smell bad, and can adversely impact wildlife and their habitat.

This ordinance would eliminate fertilizer application during the rainy summer months when fertilizer is not absorbed well by plants and mostly runs off into waterways. This ordinance joins over 90 ordinances like it throughout the state that seeks to regulate fertilizer application, including other municipalities that recently passed similar ordinances working with Miami Waterkeeper, such as the Village of Key Biscayne, Village of Islamorada, and North Bay Village. The ordinance also mandates that fertilizers must contain 0% Phosphorus and 50% slow release Nitrogen. The new law also requires a mandatory 15-foot setback for fertilizer application from any waterway or storm drain. 


Miami Waterkeeper’s Elizabeth Kelly Published New Paper on Fecal Indicator Bacteria and Microalgae Interactions

Please join us in congratulating Miami Waterkeeper’s Research Coordinator, Elizabeth Kelly, on the publishing of her paper, “Proliferation of microalgae and enterococci in Lake Okeechobee, St. Lucie, and Loxahatchee watersheds."

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Welcome Casey

Join Miami Waterkeeper in welcoming our new Outreach Associate, Casey Dresbach! Casey joined our team in February 2020, and we’re very excited to be working with her!


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HomeMiami Waterkeeper is a South Florida Environmental Group that advocates for Swimmable, Drinkable, Fishable water for all. Working on sea rise, water pollution, coral reef protection, and water issue education.