Tag Archives: goforth

Stay on the Ride! The Many Roller Coaster Configurations of Senate Bill 10, SLR/IRL

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Senate January 11 2016 – Goforth (PDF of Dr Gary Goforth’s presentation to the Senate NRAC)

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Gary Goforth, PhD

Florida Channel 1-11-17 video (go to time 1:08-1:32 to see Dr Goforth’s presentation) (http://thefloridachannel.org/videos/11117-senate-appropriations-subcommittee-environment-natural-resources/)

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Senate Bill 10, the bill associated with Senate President Joe Negron and his goal to stop the damaging discharges of Lake Okeechobee to the St Lucie River and Caloosahatchee… my gosh, up and then down, and then up again…Why such a roller coaster ride?

The last time I went on a roller coaster ride was many years ago when I in my twenties and teaching German at Pensacola High School. I took my IB high school students and 14 visiting German exchange students to Six Flags. I got so sick on the ride that I had to sit on a bench the remainder of the day. The students? They loved it and went multiple times! Roller coasters are not fun for everyone. But one thing’s for sure, if you’re on the ride, and you feel sick, be assured that it will end, but when it hasn’t, hold on! This bill, this ride, won’t end for another month plus, as it has to be voted on by the full Senate and achieve a matching bill in the House….

Thus far, the bill has really gone “double-full-circle-upside down-roller-coaster” in that Stuart’s Dr Gary Goforth ( http://garygoforth.net) mentioned the many configurations available to achieve “the goal” during the January 11th 2017 meeting of the Senate Natural Resources Appropriations Committee. At this time he pointed out that some of those “loopy configurations” on his visual went back to CERP’s birth year of 2000 and the first goals the state and federal government had for an EAA reservoir!

You can watch Dr Goforth’s presentation and see his handout linked at the top of this post. Gosh, I kind of feel sick, yes, there have been so many changes and so many numbers… 60,000, 14,000, 360,000, 240,000, A-1, A-2, my head is spinning! There is so much back and forth! Yes there is, but goodness, you can’t say this isn’t exciting! The St Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon a roller coaster for the whole world to see! Personally, I am going to try NOT to sit out on the bench this time, how about you?  🙂

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Here is a Senate staff summary of what part of the rollercoaster ride the bill is on today:

CS/SB 10:
 Establishes options for providing additional water storage south of Lake Okeechobee, including the:
o Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) reservoir project with the goal of providing a minimum of 240,000 acre-feet of water storage; and
o C-51 reservoir project with the goal of providing approximately 60,000 acre-feet of water storage.
 Authorizes the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund (TIITF) and the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) to negotiate the amendment or termination of leases on lands within the EAA for exchange or use for the EAA reservoir project.
 Requires lease agreements relating to land in the EAA leased to the Prison Rehabilitative Industries and Diversified Enterprises, Inc., (PRIDE Enterprises) for an agricultural work program to be terminated in accordance with the lease terms.
 Requires the SFWMD, upon the effective date of the act, to identify the lessees of the approximately 3,200 acres of land owned by the state or the district west of the A-2 parcel and east of the Miami Canal and the private property owners of the approximately 500 acres of land surrounded by such lands;
 Requires the SFWMD, by July 31, 2017, to contact the lessors and landowners of such lands to express the SFWMD’s interest in acquiring the land through the purchase or exchange of lands or by the amendment or termination of lease agreements.
 Requires the SFWMD to jointly develop a post-authorization change report with the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP) to revise the project component located on the A-2 parcel for implementation of the EAA reservoir project.
 Requires that if, for any reason, the post-authorization change report does not receive Congressional approval by October 1, 2018, unless the district has been granted an extension by the Legislature, the SFWMD begin the planning study for the EAA reservoir project by October 31, 2018, and proceed with the A-2 parcel project component of CEPP in accordance with the project implementation report.
 Requires the SFWMD to give preference to the hiring of former agricultural workers primarily employed during 36 of the past 60 months in the EAA, consistent with their qualifications and abilities, for the construction and operation of the EAA reservoir project.
 Establishes the Everglades Restoration Agricultural Community Employment Training Program within the Department of Economic Opportunity to provide grants for employment programs that seek to match persons who complete such training programs to nonagricultural employment opportunities in areas of high agricultural employment, and to provide other training, educational, and information services necessary to stimulate the creation of jobs in the areas of agricultural unemployment. The program is required to include opportunities to obtain the qualifications and skills necessary for jobs related to federal and state restoration projects, the Airglades Airport in Hendry County, or an inland port in Palm Beach County.
 Establishes a revolving loan fund to provide funding assistance to local governments and water supply entities for the development and construction of water storage facilities.
 Revises the uses of the Water Protection and Sustainability Program Trust Fund to include the water storage facility revolving loan program.
 Prohibits, beginning July 1, 2017, the use of inmates for correctional work programs in the agricultural industry in the EAA or in any area experiencing high unemployment rates in the agricultural sector.
 Beginning in Fiscal Year 2018-2019, appropriates the sum of $100 million from the Land Acquisition Trust Fund (LATF) to the Everglades Trust Fund for the purpose of implementing the water storage reservoir projects, with the remainder of such funds in any fiscal year to be made available for Everglades projects.
The bill provides the following appropriations for the 2017-2018 fiscal year:
 The sum of $30 million in nonrecurring funds from the LATF is appropriated to the Everglades Trust Fund for the purposes of acquiring land or negotiating leases pursuant to s. 373.4598(4), F.S., or for any cost related to the planning or construction of the EAA reservoir project.
 The sum of $3 million in nonrecurring funds from the LATF to the Everglades Trust Fund for the purposes of developing the post-authorization change report pursuant to s. 373.4598, and the sum of $1 million in nonrecurring funds from the LATF to the Everglades Trust Fund for the purposes of negotiating Phase II of the C-51 reservoir project pursuant to s. 373.4598, F.S.
 The sum of $30 million in nonrecurring funds from the LATF to the Water Resource Protection and Sustainability Program Trust Fund for the purposes of implementing Phase I of the C-51 reservoir project as a water storage facility in accordance with ss. 373.4598 and 373.475, F.S.

Image 4-9-17 at 11.29 AM

Full bill with changes, Senate Bill 10 version #3, 4-6-17 https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2017/10/Amendment/920390/HTML

History of bill in Senate: https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2017/00010

“Multiple combinations of location, configuration, land area and water depth can achieve the storage and flow objectives of the EAA Storage Reservoir.” Dr Gary Goforth

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Image 4-9-17 at 11.34 AM
Stay on the ride!

Comparison Update of Lake O Discharge Events, 1998, 2013, and 2016, SLR/IRL

 

Summary of Lake Okeechobee 2016. Dr Gary Goforth.
Comparison of Lake Okeechobee releases to the St Lucie River & Estuary 2016, Dr Gary Goforth.

This year, the Army Corp of Engineers– with input from the South Florida Water Management District, and other stakeholders— has been discharging from Lake Okeechobee into the St Lucie River and southern Indian River Lagoon since January 29th, 2016. Today will review an April update.

We as citizens must pay attention and know what is happening to the river so that we can intelligently fight for its future.

Dr Goforth’s chart above gives a good visual comparison of 2016’s discharges, thus far, compared to those of 1997/98, another El Nino year with fish lesions, fish kills, and toxic algae reports. This chart  also compares 2013, our recent “Lost Summer,” when toxic algae blooms filled the river, on and off, for about three out of five dumping months. (–Running May through October, 2013.)

One can see, that Lake Okeechobee’s 2016 discharge amounts are quickly approaching the total numbers released in 2013— although well below those of 1997/98.

Although discharges have been lessened lately, with the Army Corp of Engineers reporting a possible La Nina indications for the 2016 Hurricane season, (4-26-16 ACOE Periodic Scientist Call) considerably more rain could be on the way.

NOAA: https://www.climate.gov/enso

With the lake sitting at 14.29 today,  —a high level going into “wet season,” starting June 1st—we should all be watching the situation very closely. Hopefully 2016’s total Lake O release numbers will be nowhere close to 1997/98.

We must continue to advocate hard for a third outlet, and land purchase south of the Lake Okeechobee, as this is the only way to spare our rivers’ repeated total destruction.

Thank you to Dr Goforth for his contribution today.

ACOE Lake O: http://w3.saj.usace.army.mil/h2o/currentLL.shtml
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The following is from an email dated from Dr Gary Goforth on April 26, 2016 including the slide used for today’s blog and others of interest. Click on image to enlarge.

Hi all,

Attached are

1. Summary of the 2016 Lake discharge event to the St. Lucie River and Estuary.

2. Preliminary Water Year 2016 (May 1, 2015 to March 31, 2016 – missing April 2016) summary, including
a. Inflows to Lake Okeechobee by basin, with comparison to last year
b. Outflows from Lake Okeechobee by region, with comparison to last year
c. Flow diagram for Lake releases, with comparison to last year
d. Lake releases to STAs, with comparison to last year
e. Nutrient and TSS load from Lake discharges to the St Lucie and Caloosahatchee Estuary
f. The graphs are shown for both acre feet and billion gallons

Dr Gary Goforth http://garygoforth.net

 

 

Previous blog on 1998:https://jacquithurlowlippisch.com/2015/12/16/remembering-and-comparing-the-199798-el-nino-to-todays-slrirl/

Summary of Dry Season Flows – Nov. 1, 2015 – February 29, 2016, Goforth, SLR/IRL

Florida is like Africa. We have a wet season and a dry season. This dry season has been very wet!

In today’s blog, I will share the most recent update by Dr Gary Goforth sent to Martin County on 3-13-15 entitled: “Summary of Dry Season Flows, November 1,  2015 – February 29, 2016.” Dr Goforth gives a summary and provides wonderful visuals. The “pages” he mentions in his summary for this post have been converted to slides. (Please view slides from left to right.)

Thank you Dr Goforth. (http://garygoforth.net)
Are are an integral part in helping us understand why we must sent the water south…

Engineer, Dr Gary Goforth led the SFWMD Storm Water Treatment Area design for over a decade.
Engineer, Dr Gary Goforth.
The red line shows the designated "Everglades." As we can see humankind has filled a lot of it in. (SFWMD map, 2012.)
SFWMD satellite map, S.Fl. Water Conservation Areas (WCAs) are below the Everglades Ag. Area (EAA) which is just under Lake O.

” All,

Thought you might be interested in this comparison of dry season inflows to, and discharges from, Lake Okeechobee. Inflows to the Lake were 79% higher this dry season (Nov. 1 2015 – February 29, 2016) compared to a year ago, but Lake discharges have only been 1% higher due to the inability to send water south. Hence Lake stages have increased more than a foot above the level it was at this time last year.

The basins with the biggest increases in Lake inflows are those along the north and northwest shores of the Lake – but not the Upper Kissimmee, which exhibited a 50% reduction in flows to the Lake compared to last year.

As we’ve seen, because of the heavy rains south of the Lake and the agencies delay in moving water out of the Water Conservation Areas, WCAs, the estuaries have taken the brunt of Lake releases this year.

The flow estimates on the first 5 pages are in acre feet and in billion gallons on the second 5 pages.

Gary Goforth