Craig Pittman

Craig Pittman

Craig Pittman is a native Floridian. In 30 years at the Tampa Bay Times, he won numerous state and national awards for his environmental reporting. He is the author of five books, including the New York Times bestseller Oh, Florida! How America's Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country, which won a gold medal from the Florida Book Awards. His latest, published in 2020, is Cat Tale: The Wild, Weird Battle to Save the Florida Panther. The Florida Heritage Book Festival recently named him a Florida Literary Legend. Craig is co-host of the "Welcome to Florida" podcast. He lives in St. Petersburg with his wife and children.

At Florida’s ‘BS Ranch,’ the sludge just keeps flowing

By: - January 14, 2021

Ever since my mom got me my first library card, I’ve been an avid reader. Like a lot of dedicated readers, I keep a running tally in my head of books with great titles — titles that are so intriguing they make you want to read the book regardless of the topic. My favorite title […]


FL sacrificed a river to get paper mill jobs. The deal really stunk.

By: - January 7, 2021

While my older son was going to college in Tallahassee, my wife and I and our younger son would routinely drive up to visit him via U.S. 19. It was a lovely trip on a quiet highway that cut through the small towns and piney woods of North Florida — except for one bad spot. […]


As FL manatees try to recuperate, we humans act like wild animals

By: - December 31, 2020

Last week, when the temperature dropped below 50 degrees in South Florida, the National Weather Service warned everyone in the Miami area to be on the lookout for falling iguanas. They’re cold-blooded, so when the mercury falls, they do too. Of course, everyone guffawed about that. Oh, how wacky we are in Florida! When the […]


EPA boss plays Santa for Florida developers

By: - December 24, 2020

I love Christmas — the lights, the tree, the wrapping paper, you name it. I love everything about it, from the herald angels’ singing for the shepherds to Mariah Carey belting out her big hit, from joyful Jimmy Stewart running through Bedford Falls at the end of “It’s a Wonderful Life” to little Ralphie pining […]


Twenty years on, plan to restore FL’s Everglades runs into climate questions

By: - December 17, 2020

I’ve been humming the opening lines of a certain Beatles song lately. Why? Because it was 20 years ago today — no, wait, actually it was on Dec. 11, 2000 — that plans to restore the Everglades got their official OK with a bizarre little ceremony at the White House. This happened during the three-week-long […]


Development would’ve wiped out this FL habitat, but Destiny took a hand

By: - December 10, 2020

Don’t you just love a good Florida story? I sure do. Not just the short ones, like the one about the Gainesville driver in a road range incident who accidentally ran over himself. I love the longer ones, too, the ones that take a few twists and turns and wind up with a surprise at […]

algae bloom

Fishy business with FL Legislature’s push for wells north of Lake O

By: - December 3, 2020

My dad has always enjoyed fishing. When I was a kid, he loved taking me with him and showing me how to bait the hook, cast the line, and not freak out when my rod suddenly bent double. One important thing I learned from him was that a placid surface can be deceptive. A lot […]


Floridians, be thankful for the pains in the butt

By: - November 25, 2020

Jackie Lane knows a lot of people think she’s a pain in the butt. They wish she would just shut up and sit down. Stop causing so many problems for the paper mill near Pensacola. Stop putting people’s jobs at risk. “The community is not particularly fond of environmental activists,” she told me this week. […]


How ‘DeathSantis’ could become ‘Governor Green’

By: - November 19, 2020

Dear Gov. DeSantis, First, let me offer my condolences on your loss. I’m sure it hurts. You hitch your wagon to the TV star in the White House, he helps you become governor, and you’re looking forward to four more years of easy politicking with his help — and then BOOM, the star collapses. Millions […]


Ignoring Legislature, Central Florida voters say clean water is a right

By: - November 12, 2020

Not a lot of people noticed it, but something pretty interesting happened in Florida during last week’s election. No, I don’t mean the fact that the state most vulnerable to climate change somehow decided to cast more votes for the presidential candidate who has claimed climate change is a hoax (a claim lacking any evidence […]


Greyhound shutdown shows how FL politics has gone to the dogs

By: - November 5, 2020

Several times over the past month or so I have gone out to Derby Lane to hang out at the dog track and talk to people about The End. Derby Lane is a St. Petersburg institution. Founded in 1925, it is the oldest continuously operated greyhound racetrack in the nation, now employing about 400 people. […]

solar rooftop

Trump’s sneering at solar is stupid in the Sunshine State

By: - October 29, 2020

A 74-year-old man stopped by Florida’s massive retirement mecca known as The Villages last week. That wouldn’t be big news except it was President Donald J. Trump, who fit right in among all those golf-cart riding senior citizens (as would his challenger, Joe Biden, 77). Trump felt the need to campaign at The Villages because […]