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    Posted May 20, 2012 by
    Chiefland, Florida

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    Florida's Springs Are Dying


    I am a full time volunteer clean water/water supply advocate.

    My video has no sound...sorry.


    I found out over a decade ago that it wasn't against the law in Florida to completely destroy a crystal clear blue first magnitude spring in a Florida State Park. I couldn't believe it so I set off on my journey to document what is happening in my world.


    Florida has over 700 fresh water springs that feed our rivers and lakes. They are a large part of what makes North Florida such an awesome place to live and visit.


    In the last several years, Florida's fresh water supplies along with our natural spring's flows have been declining rapidly.


    In the last two years, there has been no regard by Florida's Governor, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection or Florida's Water Management Districts to halt this precipitous decline.


    Florida's agencies stand by statistical models that use historical water levels and historical rainfall amounts and completely disregard the fact that it just doesn't rain in Florida like it used to. They also refuse to acknowledge that we don't know when it will rain again.


    Instead they cling to theoretical "multi-decadal cycles" and "periodic heavy rain events" like just talking about them makes it certain they will happen any day now. The fact is, we don't know when it's going to rain again or how much.


    Our rainfall is down, but it does still rain. Depending on the region you are looking at, rainfall amounts have been down between 15-40%.


    Sadly some of our springs have completely quit flowing-100%.


    Many of our lakes have dried up and our rivers are at historical low levels.


    Yet our water managers continue to hand out new huge water permits for irrigation for agricultural crops, industry, housing developments and golf courses.


    In the meantime, our home wells in rural areas are going dry.


    This is news in my world. Florida's water makes our state an incredible and beautiful place to live and visit. The pre-columbian native americans considered our springs sacred. Early European explorers thought of them as Fountains of Youth.


    The springs are our "canary in the coal mine." Every human on earth needs enough water to live. Our rivers and lakes need water flowing from the springs to stay healhty.


    They are worth protecting by across the board conservation and moratoriums on new water permits. At least until the water permitting models can more clearly reflect our new climate reality.


    Submitted by iReporter
    Annette Long
    Chiefland, Florida

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