Statement From DEP Secretary Mimi A. Drew Regarding EPA Promulgation Of Nutrient Criteria For Inland Streams, Rivers And Lakes In The State Of Florida
“In August 2009, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) signed a settlement agreement setting a firm schedule to federally promulgate numeric nutrient criteria for Florida. Today EPA released those criteria.
“I am pleased that EPA has responded to our request for additional time to implement numeric nutrient criteria in Florida by setting an effective date 15 months beyond the date of promulgation. This extra time will allow everyone to reach a better understanding of the criteria and develop implementation strategies.
“Controlling nutrients is essential to protecting Florida’s inland streams, rivers and lakes, and our local governments, businesses and agricultural sector have already invested hard work and financial resources in the effort. The issues are complicated and discussions with EPA have been intense and involved but, in the end, constructive. EPA has responded to many DEP and stakeholder concerns by:
· Using DEP data and analyses in developing the criteria;
· After extensive back-and-forth with DEP, providing time for Florida to implement the criteria in conjunction with our stakeholders; and
· Including a method for establishing alternative criteria to account for the varying impacts of nutrients on different types of waterbodies under site-specific circumstances.
“DEP will now analyze and address the remaining legal and scientific issues, as well as the policy considerations associated with moving forward on nutrients, to assure that the benefits are worth the costs to Floridians.”Tweet