Florida Is Purchasing 20,000 Acres Of Everglades Wetlands To Prevent Oil Drilling
January 24, 2020
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is purchasing 20,000 acres of wetlands in the Everglades in an effort to save the area from oil drilling.
It is the largest wetland acquisition in over a decade, according to a press release from Gov. Ron DeSantis.
“This significant purchase will permanently save these lands from oil drilling. I’m proud of our progress, but also recognize this is just the beginning,” DeSantis said in a statement. “I will continue to fight every day for the Everglades and Florida’s environment.”
The wetland acquisition will protect the wildlife habitat of more 60 endangered and threatened species and support expedited restoration work on the Everglades Agricultural Area Reservoir.
In February 2019, a Florida appeals court ruled that Kanter Real Estate would be able to drill an exploratory well in the Everglades, according to court documents.
The company’s president, John Kanter, wanted to drill on a 20-mile-wide, 150-mile-long stretch of shale between Miami and Fort Myers dubbed the Sunniland Trend, according to the Miami Herald.
With the new acquisition by the state, about 600,000 acres of land are now protected in Water Conservation Area 3 and will be restored, the governor said.
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