saltwater intrusion

Politics
4:16 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

How Did The Legislature Do On Water Issues This Session?

Rainbow Springs in northern Florida
Credit Florida Trend

According to a panel discussion last Friday, the Florida Legislature did a fair job handling water issues this year. 

Legislators gave millions of dollars for Everglades restoration projects, drinking-water issues and lake clean-ups.

The Arthur R. Marshall Foundation for The Everglades, the League of Women Voters of Palm Beach County and Oxbridge Academy hosted the discussion.

Todd Bonlarron handles legislative affairs for Palm Beach County. He says the one thing the Legislature didn’t pay enough attention to was the more than 900 Florida springs.

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Saltwater
5:05 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

New Map Helps Water Managers Battle Salt

A cargo ship sails down one of Miami's many canals to the ocean. The canals are sometimes a source for saltwater intrusion into the region's groundwater.
Credit Elaine Chen

The U.S. Geological Survey and Miami-Dade County have mapped out the extent of saltwater seepage into our groundwater. The last comprehensive look was in 1995, and the good news is it hasn’t moved much since then.

South Florida is constantly battling against salt: keeping salty ocean water from getting into our groundwater.

The front in our battle, or the saltwater front keeps moving, mostly inland. As of 2011, it’s moved about 460 square miles inland in Miami-Dade. That is about 9 times the size of the city of Miami.

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Sea-Level Rise
7:46 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Study: Our Water Use Is A Major Cause Of Saltwater Intrusion

Both sea-level rise and our pumping of groundwater contribute to saltwater intrusion. Freshwater is less dense than saltwater and will float on top. But with sea-level rise, saltwater pushes in and seeps into the freshwater aquifer. With withdrawals of groundwater, we lower the level of freshwater so there's less of it keep saltwater out.
Credit US Geological Survey

A study finds that South Florida maybe can’t blame the rest of the world for saltwater seeping into the groundwater, also called saltwater intrusion. 

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Desalination
8:17 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Do You Know Where Your Water Comes From?

Florida desalinates the most water in the United States. Above is the water treatment plant in North Miami Beach, the first city in Miami-Dade to process salty water from the Floridan Aquifer.
Credit Elaine Chen

This story originally ran on March 13, 2014.

 

If you mention “desalination,” most people probably think you mean taking salt out of seawater, and they probably think you’re talking about what happens in desert nations in the Middle East.

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Links
6:33 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

What Everyone Is Reading March 16-22

Credit Wilson Sayre / WLRN

If we were to create a fictional story based this week's top five stories, it might go something like this:

Traffic engineers use funds from parking meters to build the Orlando-Miami rail line. The colorful yellow meters do not actually pay the city for parking and were supposed to fund Florida’s desalination facilities. One outraged citizen got a hold of public-radio host Ira Glass, who is now producing a radio story for “This Floridian Life.”

Alas, none of those are stories. Here are the non-fiction versions:

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Sunshine Economy
8:47 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Got Water?

Water being treated on its way to from Florida City to the Keys via a 130 mile pipeline.
Credit Tom Hudson

 

The good news from last summer's rains is that South Florida's water supply is running above average. But that doesn't ease the concerns of those responsible for finding, protecting, cleaning and distributing freshwater to the more than six million people from Pam Beach County through Key West.

They tell us there is no "average" year for water supply. It's either too wet or too dry. And while it's technically the dry season, there's plenty of water.

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Miami Sea Level Rise
8:01 am
Fri February 22, 2013

Miami Among "Most At Risk" For Sea Level Rise, Federal Climate Change Report Says

Coastal flooding will worsen in Miami if climate change patterns continue, according to a federal draft report.
Credit maxstrz / Flickr Creative Commons

Florida -- and Miami in particular -- should prepare for habitat destruction, loss of cropland, increased salt-water intrusion, worsening coastal flooding, and a host of related disasters if climate change and sea level rise patterns continue, according to findings in a federal "draft climate report."

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