Documenting the Destructive Discharges, SLR/IRL 3-15-15

Flight over Crossroads at confluence of St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon with St Lucie Inlet in distance to the right of Sailfish Point. This area has been documented as the central point of the highest fish bio-diversity in North America by Dr Grant Gilmore. (Photo Ed Lippisch and Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch 3-15-15.)
Flight over the “Crossroads” at confluence of St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon south and east of Sewall’s Point. 700 acres of seagrass between Sewall’s Point and Sailfish Point has been documented as containing the highest fish bio-diversity in North America by Dr Grant Gilmore. The releases destroy this biodiversity and kill seagrasses.  (Photo Ed Lippisch and Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch 3-15-15.)
Very Southern Tip of Sewall's Point 3-15-15. (Photo JTL)
A dark southern tip of Sewall’s Point looking towards St Lucie Inlet, 3-15-15. (Photo JTL)

 

Flying over South Sewall's Point the discharges are seen in their full entirety. Water usually bluish in color is dark brown. (3-15-15)
Flying over south Sewall’s Point, SLR west, IRL east, —looking north the discharges are seen in their full entirety. Water usually bluish in color is dark brown. (3-15-15)

 

Ed  in front of me.
Ed in front of me in Cub with Hutchinson Island in foreground. “Thank you Ed, for helping document the discharges.”

Yesterday, around noon, hours into an outgoing tide, once again, my husband Ed and I flew over the rivers to document the polluted discharges from Lake Okeechobee and the area canals pouring into the St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon.

Today I am going to incorporate the “latest” information I have received:

1. The photos from 3-15-15 throughout this blog.

2. The ACOE press release is from 3-12-15:

ACOE Press Release,  3-12-15.
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE
All,
Corps has decided next pulse release will be the same as last week–2,500
cfs west and 950 cfs east averaged over seven days. More information is
attached.
Please contact me if you have questions. Thanks for your help.
JHC
John H Campbell
Public Affairs Specialist
Jacksonville District, US Army Corps of Engineers
Jacksonville, FL
Office: 904-232-1004
Mobile: 904-614-9134
Join our online communities: http://about.me/usacejax/
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

3. Florida Oceanographic’s  water quality chart, 3-12-15.

Water Quality chart 3-12-15. (Florida Oceanographic)
Water Quality chart 3-12-15. (Florida Oceanographic )

4. The SFWMD’s “water input” chart, 3-3/3-9-15.)

3-3-15 through 3-9-15.
3-3-15 through 3-9-15.

As you can see above, last week with Lake Okeechobee around 14.7 feet, the Army Crop of Engineers, (ACOE) with the input of the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) and stakeholder from 16 counties: “decided next pulse release will be the same as last week–2,500 cfs west to the Calooshatchee and 950 cfs east to the St Lucie/SIRL averaged over seven days…(If this is confusing, a useful way to convert is to know that every 1,000 cfs is equivalent to 650 million gallons per day!)

Lake O level ACOE: (http://w3.saj.usace.army.mil/h2o/currentLL.shtml)

Today the Lake Okeechobee  is reading 14.56 feet. It is going down thankfully and the goal would be 13 feet if the ACOE and SFWMD were allowed to say it…. 

These releases could not come at a worse time, as we are already inundated by area canals and it is the beginning of spawning season, oyster spating season, and the warm weather drawing the public to area waters, like the Sandbar in the photos below.  This year, the ACOE has been dumping since January 16th, very early in the year,  foreshadowing another  possible toxic summer.

In response to these releases, last Thursday, many  of the “River Movement” including the River Warriors, continued their fight for clean water at the SFWMD as hundreds pleaded for US Sugar option lands to be purchase south of Lake Okeechobee in order to, over time, create a reservoir to store, clean and convey water “south” to the water starved Everglades.

The people realize the amounts of water coming into Lake Okeechobee from the Kissimmee River are so tremendous there is no other way to offset the destruction of the estuaries except with a third outlet south of the lake. Activists have been pushing for the this for decades but since the toxic summer of 2013, known as the “Lost Summer” a tipping point has been reached.

The goal is to save the St Lucie/S. Indian River Lagoon, the Caloosahatchee, and the Florida Everglades! Call to action video here: (https://vimeo.com/119495955)

The Crossroads off of Sewall's Point. (Photo 3-15-15, JTL)
The Crossroads off of Sewall’s Point looking towards the Jupiter Narrows and the SL Inlet. (Photo 3-15-15, JTL)
Murky greenish water could be seen in the area of the Sandbar and some remaining sickly looking seagrass beds were visible. (Photo JTL.)
Looking towards Stuart and S. Sewall’s Point, murky greenish water could be seen in the area of the Sandbar and some remaining sickly looking seagrass beds were visible. (Photo JTL.)
Off Sewall's Point.
IRL and SLR waters between S. Sewall’s Point, Sailfish Point looking at the “Sandbar.” (Photo 3-15-15, JTL.)
St Lucie Inlet, 3-15-15. (Photo JTL)
St Lucie Inlet. Plume going over “protected” near shore reefs.” 3-15-15. (Photo JTL)
Plume exiting St Lucie Inlet over near shore reefs just over a mile offshore. (Photo 3-15-15,  JTL)
Plume exiting St Lucie Inlet over near shore reefs just over a mile offshore. (Photo 3-15-15, JTL)
Plume dispersing in ocean. (3-15-15, photo JTL)
Plume dispersing in ocean. (3-15-15, photo JTL)
St Lucie Inlet near Sailfish Point 3-15-15. (Photo JTL)
Plume at St Lucie Inlet near Sailfish Point (foreground) and Jupiter Island in distance,  3-15-15. (Photo JTL)

 

13 thoughts on “Documenting the Destructive Discharges, SLR/IRL 3-15-15

  1. Good morning,

    I have started sending links back to people that submit articles and releases to us.

    They go looking for them days or weeks later and then ask me to send them the links so it is just easier for me to send them when I post them.

    If you would rather I not send them to you, just let me know and I will not.

    Have a great day and I love all your articles! I have learned so much from them and hope everyone takes the time to ready them

    Jody

    http://www.treasurecoast.com/index.cfm/on-the-water/fishing-news/documenting-the-destructive-discharges-slrirl-3-15-15/

    We also share all of them on our facebook.

    Like

  2. What a great idea, Jacqui and Ed! Living in the Conquistador Subdivision that has one of the most beautiful waterfront lots on St Lucie Blvd, my wife and I have seen the same contamination of the river. I also have witnessed it from the air as a pilot myself. It has gotten worse each year when they start dumping large quantities of water from the lake. Your aerial view photographs are a great way to expose the damage and hope that it helps to wake up our politicians to the fact that we can’t live like this much longer. Big Kudos to both of you!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Notice the foam where the fresh water full of acid comes in contact with the calcium.sea floor. The greenish water is where fresh water with acid has found some calcium. The fact that there is some sickly sea grass says there defiantly is some calcium nearby. The greenish water is what all the living creatures are after—from sea horses to coral.Yesterday I watched a very large school of big mullet fraticly biteing at the water trying to eat this green calcium rich algie. Good job Ed and jaqui

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It was a magnificent spotted eagle ray I saw the other morning.I had no idea they got that Big . In her way she has said that she totally agrees with my point of view of what has happened to the environment.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am sure she was absolutely magnificent. Large spotted rays used to be in the IRL and SLR around here in Sewall’s Point as I have seen old historical photos from my mother. Sadly some would catch them for trophies. I would never capture such a creature–I think they are sacred.

      Like

  5. I wish people there would be as enthusiastic about putting calcium BACK into the water as me and all the creatures are and stop protesting and start working. There will be many changes you see happen—all of them good. One thing I found interesting is one stream I put sand in will pack full of mullet and another will allways be full of menhaden. I think the calcium chloride(metallic salt must have some of the same charicteristics of sea salt becase I have noticed both salt water creatures now living in totally fresh water and fresh water creatures like ells and gators moveing into the salt water. Instead of acid burning up your coral calcium should neutralize the acid before it reachs the ocean making the water clear and green algie full of calcium should be gobbled up by the coral creating more coral and less beach erosion.This was the environment all the creatures have depended on for thousands of years and what is left needs to come back.

    Liked by 1 person

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