FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 23, 2014
RESTORATION OF JACKSON BLUE SPRING TOPIC OF THIS WEEK'S WORKSHOP
~Department reviews potential projects to improve water quality of Jackson Blue ~
BASCOM – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection invites local governments, scientists, environmentalists, agricultural producers and other interested parties to a restoration plan development workshop for Jackson Blue Spring and Merritt’s Millpond.
WHAT: Jackson Blue Spring and Merritt’s Millpond Basin Management Action
Plan (BMAP) Meeting
WHEN: Monday, July 28
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
WHERE: Bascom Town Hall
4969 Basswood Road
Bascom, Florida 32423
“Jackson Blue Spring is a historical landmark and a valuable natural and recreational resource for Florida’s citizens,” said Tom Frick, director of the Division of Environmental Assessment and Restoration. “These workshops provide both stakeholders and the public with opportunities to shape the restoration plan -- a crucial component for successful restoration of this important resource.”
Excess nutrient pollutants such as nitrogen have caused an imbalance in the water quality in Jackson Blue Spring and Merritt’s Millpond. This is the case in many springs across Florida, resulting in the development of algal mats, harmful algal blooms and other complications. At this meeting, DEP representatives will explain the importance of nutrient pollution reduction issues related to the Floridan aquifer as well as groundwater vulnerability. DEP officials will also discuss the pollutant contribution area for the Jackson Blue Spring system and potential measures to reduce nutrient pollution. Northwest Florida Water Management District representatives will discuss groundwater movement to the spring and the spring’s groundwater contribution.
Jackson Blue Spring, near the city of Marianna, is one of the 33 first-magnitude spring systems in Florida. Jackson Blue Spring and Merritt’s Mill Pond support a complex aquatic ecosystem and together constitute a vital cultural and economic asset for the state. The water bodies are popular ecotourism destinations for diving, snorkeling, fishing and boating.
With the support of Governor Rick Scott, twice as much funding has been dedicated exclusively to springs protection than in any other three-year period in Florida’s history.
The meeting announcement, location, agenda and other information can be viewed here.