Nature Conservancy, Surfrider Foundation Hosting Meeting Thursday on Marine Sanctuary Management | New Times Broward-Palm Beach


Nature Conservancy, Surfrider Foundation Hosting Meeting Thursday on Marine Sanctuary Management

Care about the health of local waters? Got a beef with how the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is being managed? Don't want to see the Atlantic turned into a barren, polluted wasteland?

If so, then pay attention to what the Nature Conservancy and the Surfrider Foundation are doing this week. 

On Thursday, the two groups are cohosting a meeting about the forthcoming regulatory reviews of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and the lower Keys' wildlife refuge. Among the issues that will be discussed are the overall boundary and zoning plans related to the areas. 

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Butterfly Room of the Miami Beach Botanical Garden. All are welcome.

Here's the groups' explanation as to why they're hosting the event:

In May and June of this year the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Florida Department of Environmental Protection, which are co-trustees of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, as well as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service which manages Key West National Wildlife Refuge,  Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge and National Key Deer Refuge will be conducting a legally mandated public scoping process to hear your ideas -- and everyone else's from every possible  perspective -- about what is working, what's not, what needs tweaking and what entirely new ideas you  have in mind for management and regulations in the Sanctuary and refuges. These recommendations will  be fed into the process to create a set of draft alternatives for public review and, ultimately, lead to actual  changes in rules and regulations, hopefully for the better.

If "hopefully" is not good enough for you when it comes to the islands, waters, fish, wildlife and opportunities to sustainably enjoy these things in the Florida Keys for years to come, please join us in  contributing your input and ideas to this scoping process and encourage others to do so.

As reported yesterday on this blog, Florida's coral reefs are in terrible shape. Seven species of coral found in our waters are "extremely likely to go extinct" by the year 2100.

Those interested in attending Thursday's meeting can get additional details here.

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