Audubon is excited to welcome Danielle Ivey to the Everglades team as our wetland restoration specialist! Ivey brings nearly 20 years of experience working in land management and in rural communities to the Audubon Everglades team. She has built valuable relationships throughout Central Florida through her tenure at various state and local government agencies. We know she will be a wonderful asset to the team!
Ivey will be working to connect landowners with wetland restoration funding in the Northern Everglades, driving resources toward projects that have the ability to store and slow more water on its way from Orlando to Lake Okeechobee. The tool currently identifies and prioritizes locations within the Central Florida Water Initiative region where both surface water storage and groundwater recharge are needed and would have the most beneficial outcomes for restoration projects. Our team will be expanding this work to include the remainder of the Okeechobee watershed and into portions of the St. Johns River Water Management District.
The Central Florida Water Initiative surrounds the greater Orlando area and is a collaborative process between multiple water management districts, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and well as local water supply utilities in Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole, and Lake
counties. The population in this area is expected to increase by as much as 50% by 2040, indicating an increased demand for water and natural resources. The tool prioritizes areas that can slow the movement of water across the landscape, allowing it to recharge the aquifer and save more water for both wildlife and people.
This article originally appeared in the Fall 2023 State of the Everglades report.