Environment

COMMENTARY

Call Florida’s governor ‘Developer-Santis’ because he bows to builders’ every wish

BY: - June 23, 2022

Nicknames can tell you so much about politicians. “Walkin’ Lawton” Chiles earned his for hiking the whole state while campaigning for the U.S. Senate. Bob Graham was dubbed “Governor Jell-O” for his wishy-washy ways when he first took office, but he sh-sh-shimmied out of that one. An angry mob dubbed then-Gov. Rick Scott. “Red Tide […]

Biden pitches a summer gas tax holiday as price hovers around $5 a gallon

BY: - June 22, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Wednesday called on Congress and state legislatures to provide a temporary reprieve from gas taxes — but members of his own party and Republicans appeared opposed, making it look unlikely on the federal level. In addition, many state legislatures are out of session for the year and aren’t expected […]

wildlfire 5-7-20

Interior to launch mental health program for wildland firefighters, boost wildfire spending

BY: - June 17, 2022

The U.S. Interior Department will create a health and well-being program for wildland firefighters and boost spending on firefighting efforts by $103 million in fiscal 2022, the department said in an exclusive to States Newsroom on Friday. The additional funding, to be announced in Boise, Idaho, by Secretary Deb Haaland, comes as part of the […]

U.S. Senate passes landmark legislation to aid veterans exposed to burn pits, Agent Orange

BY: - June 16, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. soldiers deployed to bases in Afghanistan and Iraq often lived and worked alongside large pits where batteries, plastics, rubber, chemicals and other garbage would be lit on fire with jet fuel. The legacy of those burn pits followed thousands of military members back to the United States, where they have suffered from […]

COMMENTARY

Florida boaters clobber rare whale and calf, but they avoid legal consequences

BY: - June 16, 2022

There’s nothing like a good shipwreck story. The battle against the elements, the human drama, the deadly consequences — those elements make for some compelling telling. Doesn’t matter whether the story involves the doomed sailors of the USS Indianapolis, the desperate passengers of the SS Poseidon,or the fearless crew of the SS Minnow. Florida has […]

EPA: ‘Forever chemicals’ more toxic than first thought; at least 87 FL sites deemed contaminated

BY: - June 15, 2022

Two kinds of toxic “forever chemicals” widely found in drinking water after decades of use in consumer products and certain industries are more dangerous than previously thought, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Wednesday. The EPA issued stricter health guidelines for those Wednesday, ahead of plans to adopt national drinking water standards next year. In […]

FL’s insurer of last resort faces hurricane season with shortfall of reinsurance coverage

BY: - June 14, 2022

Like some private insurers, Florida’s state-run property insurance corporation has been unable to acquire all the reinsurance coverage it needs to cover risks posed by hurricanes and other threats in the coming year. Citizens Property Insurance Corp., the state’s insurer of last resort, has acquired about one-third of the back-up coverage it has been seeking, […]

U.S. House Ag panel mulls safety net changes in farm bill amid soaring costs

BY: - June 11, 2022

WASHINGTON —  Members of the U.S. House Agriculture Committee are considering how to help farmers struggling with rising costs for fertilizer, fuel, seeds, and chemicals — the unfortunate harvest of the war in Ukraine, strains on the global supply system, inflation, and severe weather. A panel of the committee heard from agricultural economists Thursday, as […]

COMMENTARY

We should be turning our kids into fans of the Florida environment

BY: - June 9, 2022

We expect so much from our teachers these days. I blame Harry Potter for this. Harry’s teachers at Hogwarts use wizardly magic to make things happen and never have to worry about running out of supplies. Clearly, we expect the same from the humans working in Florida schools, despite the distinct lack of sorting hats […]

Everglades: Gov vetoes pet project of FL Senate President, who is an Ag Commissioner candidate

BY: - June 8, 2022

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Wednesday he has vetoed Senate Bill 2508, an Everglades-related pet project of outgoing Senate President Wilton Simpson that was hotly opposed by environmental groups and South Florida fishermen. Introduced late in the Florida Legislature’s regular session last winter, SB 2508 had only one hearing before reaching a final vote in the […]

Storm-proofing: Sales-tax break starts July 1, but what about the $10,000 grants?

BY: - June 7, 2022

Update: Late Tuesday, a webpage of FAQs about yet-to-be-implemented “My Safe Florida Home” grants was rolled out by the Florida Department of Financial Services. It is at https://myfloridacfo.com/mysafeflhome.  Florida residents wanting to fortify their homes against storm damage this hurricane season are entitled to sales-tax exemptions starting July 1 on purchases of impact-resistant windows, doors […]

Amid turbulence in FL property insurance market, homeowners still have options — but not many

BY: - June 7, 2022

With the first named storm of the 2022 hurricane season — Alex — already leaving its mark on South Florida, the turmoil in the state’s property-insurance market continues to worsen. Tens of thousands of Florida homeowners are scrambling to find coverage, as the insurance industry grapples with “an existential challenge,” as described by a leading […]