Take Note: The blog post below is from 2015 when the cry “Send The Water South!” was at its peak that year. Despite the public and media pressure the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) stayed firm and saved Cape Sabal Seaside Sparrows and possibly other migratory birds from severe environmental impacts.
“Because of the Migratory Bird Act and the Endangered Species Act, we don’t have the ability just to say, ‘Oh, they’re [endangered birds] in the way, but we need to put water quality first. . .’ ”.
—Quote. Jeff Kivett, SFWMD chief engineer, in March of 2015.
|Cape Sabal Seaside Sparrow, Source U.S. FWS. The blog post from 2 years ago follows:|
This information comes from George Bennett at The Palm Beach Post in an article titled, “Death mermaid, eco-theater fail to sway board on U.S. Sugar land”. The disturbing thing about Mr. Bennett’s piece is Drew Martin wasn’t quoted, we all hope he’s OK.
Anyhow, the environmentalists fought hard for the sugar land buy to “fix” the Lake Okeechobee problem, vis-à-vis the water level in the lake. The SFWMD wasn’t influenced by the “eco-theater” but that doesn’t mean they weren’t impressed by the show. By the sound of it was quite the scene. If you haven’t seen the picture of the "Death mermaid” it is quite impressive.
From the article by George Bennett on why the water in Lake Okeechobee cannot be moved South, at least any time in the foreseeable future:
Kivett [SFWMD’s chief engineer, Jeff Kivett], offering more detail on a presentation he had made earlier, said those constraints include pumps, canals and other structures that aren’t equipped to move large volumes of water from the lake to the Everglades. He also said storing more water south of the lake could threaten the Cape Sabal seaside sparrow and other migratory birds protected by federal law. [emphasis added]
“Because of the Migratory Bird Act and the Endangered Species Act, we don’t have the ability just to say, ‘Oh, they’re in the way, but we need to put water quality first,’ … I can’t legally move water out of the lake and drown those nests. Fish and Wildlife would not accept that. It would send someone, really, to jail if we did that,” Kivett said.