Just a few miles off the Florida coast lies the third-largest coral barrier reef system in the world. These corals, which range from 5,000 to 7,000 years old, are in drastic decline because of climate change and human activity.
Fortunately we now have an opportunity to help Florida's coral reefs.
Due in part to a lawsuit by the Center for Biological Diversity and allies, the Army Corps of Engineers has agreed to reassess the environmental impacts of the Port Everglades expansion. The Corps is inviting written comments and hosting two public meetings, and will use the public’s feedback to conduct a new environmental study.
Dredging for another project -- the PortMiami expansion -- caused unanticipated, widespread damage to corals. Instead of the minimal harm the Corps had expected, hundreds of coral colonies and more than 250 acres of reef that provide critical habitat for protected staghorn corals were hurt by fine-grained sediment. The National Marine Fisheries Service reports that 95 percent of the surveyed reef is no longer suitable habitat for coral, and much of it will never recover naturally.
We must stop this from happening to corals in Port Everglades.
Please write to the Army Corps to let it know that you expect it to protect Florida's corals and their habitat.
February 17, 2017 Action Alert ID# 476
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