Posted by: reefrescue | July 17, 2014

Group files notice to sue for dredging violations

Environmental Groups and Concerned Citizens File Notice to Sue U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for Endangered Species Act and Permit Violations in the Port Miami Deep Dredge Project

Miami, FL – On July 16, 2014, Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper, Captain Dan Kipnis, Coral Morphologic, Miami-Dade Reef Guard Association, Sierra Club Miami Group, and Tropical Audubon Society, filed a citizens’ notice of suit letter alleging that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers violated the Endangered Species Act, in addition to several permit conditions by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (“DEP”) during the Port Miami Deep Dredge project. In its letter, the environmental coalition identified a long list of violations, including that the Army Corps’ contractors are not protecting threatened coral species, allowing excessive amounts of dredge sedimentation buildup on the reefs, not sufficiently monitoring sedimentation, and failing to move dredge ships away from corals that are exhibiting signs of injury or degradation.

 

Photo: D. Kipnis

Photo: D. Kipnis

 

“The Army Corps of Engineers has, from the very beginning, failed to comply with even the limited conditions placed on them by their permit,” said Rachel Silverstein, executive director and Waterkeeper for Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper. “As our local divers, snorkelers, scientists, and fishermen well know, Floridians have already lost over 80% of our coral reefs. These resources are critical for Miami’s economy and culture. We cannot allow the Army Corps to cut corners and continue to harm the little bit that remains of these irreplaceable natural resources.”

Press Release: http://www.scribd.com/doc/234248655/Port-Miami-Notice-Letter-Release-71614

60-Day Notice, Intent to Sue: http://www.scribd.com/doc/234248707/60-Day-Notice-Letter-07-16-14-FINAL

Corals near dredge sites have twice as much disease:  http://www.smh.com.au/environment/corals-near-dredge-sites-have-twice-as-much-disease-study-20140716-ztifj.html#ixzz37kceGYb5

 

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