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May 2003

CONSERVATION OF THE ST. SEBASTIAN RIVER, SOUTH PRONG

    This past year we reported on efforts to try and protect the properties along the South Prong of the St. Sebastian River.  A few different agencies are interested in trying to conserve some of these properties.  In the meantime, the Marine Resources Council (MRC) submitted a grant application to the Florida Communities Trust for funding to purchase some of the properties.  Last year's application did not rank high enough for funding, but the MRC will be submitting an application again this year.
   
Jim Egan, Executive Director of the MRC will be our guest this month and will give us an update on their new strategy for this year's application.  He will also give us an overview of the habitats along the South Prong - their type and quality, and who may be interested in selling for conservation.
    The meeting will be on
Tuesday, May 27, 7:30 PM at the North Indian River County Library on CR 512 in Sebastian.  All are welcome and refreshments will be served following the meeting.

IS FLORIDA LOSING THE BATTLE WITH BEACH EROSION?

    "Florida's beaches are eroding at an alarming rate, despite elaborate regulations and millions of dollars spent on restoration, say scientists, engineers and environmentalists."
    "Of the 825 miles of sandy shores surrounding the state, 328 miles are being eaten away to the point of threatening buildings."
    "Shoreline development is driving much of the erosion, and the state's efforts to control it have been too late or ineffective, according to reports by the Pensacola News Journal, Florida Today of Melbourne and the News-Press of Fort Myers."
    "While beach erosion threatens the state's multibillion-dollar tourism industry, few people give it much thought, said Bob Dean, a professor for coastal and oceanographic engineering at the University of Florida."
    "Florida began regulating coastal construction in 1974, long after many beaches were developed. Since then, the state has denied only 52 permits and allowed 4,913 new homes, condominiums, hotels and other structures on land susceptible to erosion…".

source:  "St. Petersburg Times", July 30,2002