Local scientists are studying the long-term effects of the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. It’s part of an international research project. It’s been six years since more than three-million barrels of oil poured into the gulf.
The El Nino weather pattern made this past January the rainiest on record for South Florida since 1932 according to the South Florida Water Management District. Environmental advocates, business owners and public officials opposed the back-pumping of nutrient-laden agricultural runoff back into Lake Okeechobee and the billions of gallons of water that was discharged each day into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Rivers. Those discharges sent murky brown water to the coast around Sanibel Island.
The clear waters and expansive seagrass meadows of Florida Bay are iconic images of the region. The Bay is also the southern end of Everglades National Park - and the receiving end of the Everglades watershed. The Bay’s connection with the Everglades is both essential - and problematic.