SFWMD to Begin Rule Making Effort to Reduce Debris and Vegetation in District Waterways
Today, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Governing Board authorized staff to begin a rulemaking process to reduce trash, debris and vegetation in District waterways. This rulemaking process initiates public engagement with local drainage operators, local governments, landowners, stakeholders and the public to develop a new regulatory rule aimed at reducing trash, debris, and vegetation in District canals.
Once the new rule is developed, it would allow the District to require local canal operators to take proactive measures to reduce the amount of litter, vegetation and debris that enters District canals.
Many of South and Central Florida’s waterways are interconnected. Trash, debris and vegetation can make their way into local waterways and canals and can eventually end up in District canals. District canals often move water into bays and lakes, and trash, debris, and vegetation in these waterbodies can cause negative water quality impacts. Keeping District canals free of debris and vegetation allows for more efficient water management and also reduces the negative water quality impacts associated with litter and debris.
The rulemaking process approved today will involve a series of public workshops over the next several months. In addition to this rulemaking effort, the District installed additional debris-collecting booms throughout its water management system to prevent debris from entering lakes and bays including Biscayne Bay.
The South Florida Water Management District is a regional governmental agency that manages the water resources in the southern part of the state. It is the oldest and largest of the state’s five water management districts. Our mission is to safeguard and restore South Florida’s water resources and ecosystems, protect our communities from flooding, and meet the region’s water needs while connecting with the public and stakeholders.
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