Save our fisheries! East meets west in Clewiston!
From the organizers: ” This is not a political event. The Save Our Fisheries Convoy is a one-day road trip to Clewiston, where anglers, water-related business owners, and all Floridians fed up with the dismal condition of our public waterways can make their voices heard. Let’s make a stand against the mismanagement of Florida’s waterways.
Growing and toxic blue-green algae blooms now stretch from Ft. Myers to Lake Okeechobee to Stuart. Our seagrasses have been destroyed, fishing is suffering, and your health and the health of your children is at risk. Our waters are dumping grounds for disastrous discharges and are testing toxic! ”
Here are the videos. Thanks to Jennie Pawlowsky!
Here are Jennie’s note from the day:
The Mayor of Clewiston went out of her way to make everyone feel welcome. She showed a lot of empathy for people on the coasts as well as saying that we need to protect the people that live around the lake. Basically, when we work on the “fix”, we need to take all people into account. This resonated.
The Mayor and angler Scott Martin basically talked about four issues.
1. They want to slow the flow from the Orlando/Kissimmee area to the Lake. They want water stored and cleaned north before it gets south.
2. They want FWC to stop the spraying that they do to control evasive plants in Lake Okeechobee.
3. They also want the Lake lowered so that the grasses can regrow and assist in keeping it clean. The lake is too high for the grass to grow/and or clean the lake.
(We can and should support this!)
4. The projects (CERP) need to be expedited and finished.
Josh Greer also spoke. He was the mastermind behind today’s event. Josh is from the West Coast. He reiterated that we’ve got to work together to get this fixed.
The best part of all of this is that it appeared to me that more and more people are educating themselves about the complexity of this problem and that in order for this to all work out, we’ve got to work together and to stop pointing fingers and to stop criticizing the citizens in the other communities.
After the “press conference”, the mayor of Clewiston invited press and other people to go out on the lake. They had boats and boat captains waiting to give us tours. I thought that was pretty cool.
Anyway, we left with “good feelings” about the event. We did see people from different communities in healthy debates (including myself) and it appears that we all need to listen more to each other.
My idea: Let’s continue the discussion. Let’s create a group consisting of East Coast, West Coast and Lake Okeechobee citizens and meet once a month to continue the bridges we made today and continue the conversation. There was a lot of positive today. We want to build on this positive.
Thank you Jennie!
Here is the Captains for Clean Water Video
Please listen to it. It is an accurate account of where we are at!
We can support the people around the lake with the spraying issue and I thinks it worth it for us all to talk about lowering the lake so it can come back. Lake Okeechobeee needs life and fish so the people can survive.
My feelings: We have support the people around the lake and the dike needs to be fixed. Period. In return, they need to support the southern reservoir because this is how the problem will get fixed. The southern reservoir is part of Everglades restoration and it is needed to recharge the aquifer and to send fresh water to Florida Bay.
It’s win-win for all. Our discharges are decreased. The people around the lake are safe. win-win. Imagine all that winning!