Major Step Forward for Everglades Restoration

Construction has begun on the EAA Reservoir Project.

As the South Florida Water Management District summarizes:

“The EAA Reservoir Project was conditionally authorized in the federal Water Resources Development Act of 2000 as a component of CERP. To accelerate progress on the project, Senate Bill 10 was passed by the Florida Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott in 2017. In 2018, the U.S. Congress provided the required federal authorization and approved a plan developed by the South Florida Water Management District.”

When complete, the EAA Reservoir project will encompass the above-ground storage reservoir, but also a stormwater treatment area (STA) and canal enhancement. The goal: to decrease harmful discharges to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee estuaries and increase freshwater flows into Everglades National Park and Florida Bay.

SFWMD obtained state and federal permits to begin construction of the STA component earlier this week and construction crews are on site today doing critical site preparation work.

“The EAA Storage Reservoir and STA Project remains the single most important Everglades restoration initiative awaiting construction. With this permit, the STA piece of the project will increase our capacity to both clean water and allow it to flow south into a parched Everglades National Park and Florida Bay,” says Audubon Florida’s Executive Director Julie Wraithmell.

“It has been incredibly dry, and the timing of this permit approval is perfect. Moving water south ensures we are replenishing our aquifers. We need that freshwater for the sake of the bay, the park, and for South Florida families.”

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