To Waste Management, the nation's largest handler of garbage, the liquid that winds up at the bottom of a landfill is called "leachate," and it can safely be disposed of in a well that's 4,200 feet deep.
But to residents of mostly rural Jackson County, the stuff is just "garbage juice," and it carries a toxic taint that they don't want in their drinking water. Their allies include the NAACP, all five county commissioners and their Republican state senator....
Florida's Cabinet voted this week to acquire 407-acre Blue Springs Park in Gilchrist County, a jewel of a spring that's been privately owned since 1958.
The spring was saved from development thanks to a long-ago secret love affair involving a St. Petersburg business mogul and his faithful assistant.
The Cabinet approved the purchase for $5.25 million, which state officials said was 10 percent below the owners' asking price The parcel includes a set of six springs and a mile of land along the Santa Fe River....
Florida's Cabinet voted Wednesday to acquire 407-acre Blue Springs Park in Gilchrist County, a jewel of a spring that's been privately owned since 1958 -- thanks to a long-ago love affair involving a St. Petersburg business mogul and his faithful assistant.
The Cabinet approved the purchase for $5.25 million, which Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam said was 10 percent below the owners' asking price, according to WUFT. The parcel includes a set of six springs and a mile of land along the Santa Fe River....
Phosphate giant Mosaic expected to be finished by now with filling in the massive sinkhole that opened up at its Mulberry processing plant last August. But it's not.
Company officials announced Wednesday that the hole beneath its phosphogypsum stack is wider than they had thought — 80 to 100 feet wide, instead of 45.
That means it will take a lot more grout than expected, which means completely filling in the hole will take longer. No one knows how much longer....
Impressed by the success of their pilot program, the South Florida Water Management District voted to keep on employing a team of paid python hunters to track down the big snakes that invaded the Everglades, according to the Miami Herald.
The water agency bosses were delighted that the 25 hunters who were part of the pilot program bagged 158 snakes and about 2,000 eggs before it ended June 1, and wanted it to continue. That 158, incidentally, is more than any other organized hunt -- the state's "Python Challenge" in 2013 nabbed just 68, and the one last year got 106 (an amount that could be replaced by a single clutch of eggs from one female)....
Jim Kern started the Florida Trail five decades ago; he's still waiting for the Legislature finish it06/08/17Essays
Look how far you can get just by putting one foot in front of the other.
Jim Kern has hiked trails all over the globe. He just got back from walking around Corsica. He's clambered across the mountains in Nepal and trekked through the jungles of Borneo. He's 83 and still pulling on his boots to wander the woods around his St. Augustine home whenever he can.
TAMPA BAY TIMES ENVIRONMENTAL COVERAGE:...
Last month, despite overwhelming public opposition, the Southwest Florida Water Management District board voted 9-1 to allow the flow of Crystal River and Kings Bay to be cut by up to 11 percent to accommodate the needs of new development. Opponents, who argued that that amount was far too high and would harm the environment, threatened a legal challenge like the one that had previously been filed over the agency's similar action regarding the Rainbow River....
Hurricane season starts with Trump appointees missing at FEMA and NOAA, the agencies that deal with hurricanes06/02/17Hurricanes
The 2017 hurricane season started Thursday with no Trump Administration appointees running the two federal agencies most involved in dealing with hurricanes.
Five months after President Donald J. Trump was sworn in, no one has taken the reins at the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which is in charge of preparing for and then dealing with the aftermath of disasters such as a hurricane....
The 2017 hurricane season started Thursday without anyone in charge at the two federal agencies most involved in dealing with hurricanes, National Public Radio notes....
To catch a ring of poachers who targeted Florida's million-dollar alligator farming industry, state wildlife officers created the ultimate undercover operation.
They set up their own alligator farm, complete with plenty of real, live alligators, watched over by real, live undercover wildlife officers. It also had hidden video cameras to record everything that happened.
After two years of undercover work, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced Wednesday that it arrested nine people on 44 felony charges. They're accused of breaking wildlife laws governing alligator harvesting, transporting eggs and hatchlings across state lines, dealing in stolen property, falsifying records, racketeering and conspiracy....
Officers from the Florida FIsh and Wildlife Conservation Commission went undercover in the state's alligator farming industry in 2015 and, have now arrested nine people on 44 felony charges and documenting 10,000 illegally harvested gator eggs, the agency announced Wednesday....
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....