Restoration of the Greater Everglades Ecosystem has some great and obvious benefits including improving water quality, protecting South Florida drinking water supplies, and improving and protecting habitat areas for wildlife. However, restoration of the Everglades has another important benefit that doesn’t get as much attention: helping prepare for, and reduce the impacts of climate change.
Climate change can seem like a daunting global issue but there are strategies to lessen its impacts on a local level. For South Florida, continuing to invest in restoration will be key to delaying and minimizing some of the impacts. Healthier ecosystems respond better to change and more easily adapt to changing conditions. Restoring the Greater Everglades Ecosystem will also have the added benefit of improving the health and resilience of our coral reefs, and the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Estuaries.
In addition to the well-known benefits for water and wildlife, continuing to move forward with the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) will help slow the intrusion of salt water into aquifers, delay impacts of sea level rise along the coasts, improve flood control, and make sure ecosystems are healthier and more resilient.
In short, it is smart planning for our future with multifold benefits for people and wildlife.
For more information, please see the following two links:
- Audubon Fact Sheet: Adapting to Climate Change in the Everglades
- NY Times: Audubon Florida's Tabitha Cale - Sea Level Rise in Florida