For over a hundred years, we’ve built canals, levees, dikes, dams, and reservoirs to move the right amount of clean, fresh water to the right places at the right time. We took the water out of the bog and moved powerful rivers back to where they belong. 

We have spent billions of dollars to move huge amounts of water in one direction or another. But there are still problems with Florida’s plumbing. What is the problem, and how will we fix it?

Water Bodies And Pollution

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s watershed monitoring basin reports listing the 29 watershed monitoring basins. St. Marks/Ochlocknee local basin is one of them. 

The watershed monitoring basin reports summarise the status network monitoring data for surface water and groundwater.

The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences says that eutrophication is when nutrients are added to lakes and other bodies of water. This is how Lake in Florida works.

 “Nonpoint source pollution,” also called “pointless personal pollution,” is defined by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

The Clean Water Network of Florida is a group of people who want the Clean Water Act and other policies to protect water resources to be fully implemented, enforced, and made stronger.

Florida Environmental Defenders is a group that works to protect the water quality in Florida by considering springs, lakes, rivers, bays, and wildlife.

The City of Tallahassee started the Think About Personal Pollution (TAPP) Campaign to raise people’s awareness of how important it is to reduce personal pollution in lakes, sinks, and streams in the area. The video below does a great job of showing how wastewater from Leon and Wakulla counties affects Wakulla Springs.

What’s Wrong With The Water In Florida?

Despite our best efforts, Florida has a lot of red tide and blue-green algae blooms, which can hurt people, animals, pets, and even marine life. Because of toxic algae blooms, emergency declarations have shut down beaches and little fishing along a large part of our east and west coasts.

We have too much water during the rainy season, and during the dry season, we are almost in a drought. Even though the Everglades are so dry that dangerous wildfires are burning in what used to be a “river of grass,” flood managers have to dump billions of gallons of fresh water into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie estuaries during the rainy season because it rains so much. 

Because there isn’t enough fresh water in the south, the salinity of Florida Bay has changed, which threatens one of the most popular places to fish in the world.

What Is Going On?

Water used to flow through Florida from north to south along the peninsula’s very slight downhill slope. A drop of rain that fell today in the Kissimmee River Valley, which is close to Disney World, will end up in Lake Okeechobee.

When Lake Okeechobee got to a certain level of water, it overflowed.

 The water flowed south through the Everglades and into Florida Bay. Biscayne Aquifers is an underground reservoir that provides water to 5 million people in Miami-Dade, Monroe, and Broward counties and the southeast part of Palm Beach County. 

It was refilled by “sheet flow,” a natural process in which water seeps into the ground. As the water moved south, plants and soil would pick up more nutrients and minerals, which was a key step in cleaning the water and making it cleaner.

How Good The Water Is In Florida

The water also changed because of the canals, levees, and dikes. Tons of nitrogen and phosphorus came into the watershed from human development and farming, hurting its quality.

When the fertilisers get into the water and are hit by the harsh South Florida sun, they make tiny algae that can be harmful to humans, fish, animals, pets, and wildlife, as well as the seagrass that keeps life going below.