turkey point blog

Miami Waterkeeper Supports Monroe County's Involvement in Turkey Point NPDES Permit Challenge

Miami Waterkeeper submitted public comments to the Monroe County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) in support of the County challenging Turkey Point Power Plant’s Clean Water Act (NPDES) Permit. The BOCC voted unanimously to intervene in this legal proceeding and on June 4th, 2020. 

(Source: Bloomberg)

FPL’s Turkey Point Power Plant is located on the shores of Biscayne Bay, abutting several protected areas. The plant’s operation has been leaking contaminated water into the Biscayne Aquifer, our primary source of drinking water, by way of its faulty Cooling Canal System for decades. Turkey Point has recently received the nation's first-ever subsequent license renewal to continue operation of the nuclear units and cooling canals into the 2050s -- soon making them the oldest nuclear reactors in the world. 

The NPDES permit at issue before the County Commission would directly govern which discharges from the plant are permitted. In our comments, Miami Waterkeeper underscored our concerns about the NPDES permit. We believe this permit is not stringent enough to protect both Biscayne Bay and our drinking water supply.  

Moreover, natural habitats in close proximity to the plant could also be adversely impacted by a non-protective permit. These include Biscayne National Park, Biscayne Bay Aquatic Preserve, Everglades National Park, Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge, and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. These protected areas hold high ecological and economic value -- with significant resources contributing to tourism, employment opportunities, and clean drinking water from our underground aquifer. 

Miami Waterkeeper believes Monroe County’s intervention in a permit challenge alongside the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority will be able to ensure stringent protections on behalf of our important water resources. 

As part of our ongoing campaign to stop pollution from Turkey Point, we will continue to advocate on behalf of increased protection for South Florida’s watershed. Our team will keep you updated with the latest proceedings as it pertains to the NPDES permit. 

Read more on the campaign HERE.

Read our full comment letter HERE

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