EPA settles with environmental groups; new pollution limits on FL waterways

08/21/09 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday | Listen to this entire show:

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has agreed to place limits on how much pollution can enter Florida’s waterways. Environmental groups fanned out across the state today to announce a settlement to a lawsuit they filed last year against the EPA.

David Guest is with Earthjustice, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit. "Today is a major milestone in the protection of lakes and rivers in Florida."

Guest says EPA signed a consent decree as the consequence of the lawsuit.

The consent decree imposes specific deadlines for the limits to be determined, according to Guest.

Neil Armingeon, with St. Johns Riverkeeper in Jacksonville, calls the agreement an important step toward restoration of Florida’s waterways.

Manley Fuller with the Florida Wildlife Federation says there has been intense lobbying to weaken standards, but that Florida’s leaders should insist on strict standards. Fuller says the “successful effort” has “been a long time coming.”

The Sierra Club’s Frank Jackalone called it the most important litigation he’s seen in his twelve years with the environmental group and added that it will have a tremendous impact on all of Florida’s waters.

EPA consent decree

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