Swamped by developers, but now there is hope for the Everglades
Land Deal Would Help Restore Everglades [Real Player]
Sugar would stay plentiful, pricey
Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan [pdf, Macromedia Flash Player]
The Everglades Digital Library [pdf]
Restoring the Everglades has been an uphill battle for decades. A new phase in the battle to save the Everglades may have started this past Tuesday, when the state of Florida effectively bought out the United States Sugar Corporation, which happens to be the nation's larcgest sugarcane producer. At a press conference, Florida Governor Charlie Crist said, "I can envision no better gift to the Everglades, the people of Florida and the people of America-as well as our planet-than to place in public ownership this missing link that represents the key to true restoration." As part of the deal, U.S. Sugar will receive $1.75 billion from the state and they will turn over 187,000 acres immediately north of Everglades National Park along with other pieces of infrastructure. As this process is completed over the coming years, the natural flow of water will be restored to the area, effectively adding about a million acre-feet of water storage. There are plenty of details to be worked out, but the atmosphere surrounding this recent announcement remains one of true excitement. The mood might be best summarized by Margaret McPherson, vice president of the Everglades Foundation, who remarked, "I'm going to do cartwheels."
The first link will lead visitors to an article on this recent transaction from this Tuesday's Miami Herald. The second link leads to another piece on the subject from the Independent's Leonard Doyle writing from Washington, DC. Moving on, the third link leads to a National Public Radio feature on the sale of U.S. Sugar. The fourth link leads to an investigative report from this Wednesday's St. Petersburg Times which examines how this sale might affect the price of sugar. For those who would like to know more about the Everglades Restoration plan, the fifth link contains numerous publications, fact sheets, and interactive activities on this long-term process. Finally, the last link leads to the Everglades Digital Library, which was developed using the Collection Workflow Integration System (CWIS), a free software package created by the Internet Scout Project.