*Update: April 24, 2017*
This position paper is written by our Board member Jay O’Laughlin, Ph.D., a policy scientist with extensive experience in studying ways to protect the natural environment and our clean water supply. The paper was updated following the amendments to Senate Bill 10 on April 12th.
A reservoir in the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) is an unfinished 60-year old project, among the suite of projects approved in 2000 by the State of Florida and the U.S. Congress, acting as partners, to restore the Everglades by sending excess Lake Okeechobee (Lake O) water south, and reducing wasteful and harmful discharges to estuaries east and west of the lake. Sen. Joe Negron of Stuart made that his top priority as President of the Florida Senate. A bill asks that reservoir planning on state lands south of the lake be reinitiated now rather than forestalled to 2021.
Eight arguments against the EAA Reservoir have surfaced and are rebutted herein. Most were likely quieted by recent amendments to the bill. The loss of jobs from taking farmlands out of production, however, remains a sticking point. On balance, this analysis shows that the EAA Reservoir is a job creator, and not, as some claim, a “job killer.”
Read & Download the updated paper here: