For Immediate Release: Nov. 2, 2011
Contact: Dee Ann Miller (850) 245-2112 or (850) 519-2897
STATEMENT FROM DEP SECRETARY HERSCHEL T. VINYARD JR. REGARDING NUMERIC NUTRIENT STANDARDS RULE DEVELOPMENT
“Today, I authorized staff to move forward with rulemaking for numeric nutrient standards for Florida.
“The future of Florida’s environment depends on the health of our water resources, and no one knows our waters better than us. This is the right thing for Florida, and the right thing to do.
“If adopted, these rules will be the most comprehensive nutrient pollution limitations in the nation, and will serve to protect our rivers, lakes, streams, springs and estuaries.
“Using more than a decade of data collection and analysis, Florida has developed standards that account for the individual characteristics and needs of Florida’s diverse water resources. By setting standards focused on site-specific conditions we are better able to protect public health, improve water quality and preserve aquatic life in Florida’s unique water resources throughout the state.
“Florida’s efforts go beyond crafting scientifically-sound standards for our waterbodies. We also provide a reasonable and predictable strategy to implement these standards, allowing us to direct our resources to where they will have the most meaningful benefit to our environment and reduce the financial burdens on Florida’s homeowners and businesses.
“The state of Florida is, and has historically been, a national leader assessing and addressing the health of our waterways. Florida accounts for 30 percent of the national water quality dataset, far surpassing any other state in the nation. These rules are the result of years of work not only by DEP, but by Florida’s stakeholders, including environmental groups, governments, water management districts, business and agricultural interests.
“We’ve worked closely with the EPA throughout the rule development process, and appreciate their cooperation and feedback.
“Florida has invested millions of dollars to create nutrient rules that address the complexity of Florida’s waters, and we intend to finish the job.”