Yesterday a Tallahassee appeals court made a shocking decision to overrule a resolution made by Florida's Department Environmental Protection. As a result, the Florida Everglades are now open for oil drilling.
According to an article posted yesterday by the Tampa Bay Times, after nearly four years of legal battles a wealthy Miami family business, Kanter Real Estate, has finally been granted permission to drill an exploratory oil well in the Everglades.
While a western area of the Everglades has already been tapped into by a Texas oil company, Kanter Real Estate President John Kanter believes he has potential use for oil in the eastern part of the Sunniland Trend; a 20-mile wide, 150-mile-long stretch of shale between Miami and Fort Myers. The land is situated within a region of the South Florida Water Management District’s three conservation areas.
The DEP initially denied the business's permit because the Everglades are considered "environmentally sensitive” land.
The Everglades are home to some of Florida's rarest and most abundant wildlife populations. The park is a 1.5-million-acre wetland preserve made up of coastal mangroves, sawgrass marshes and pine flatwoods that are home to hundreds of animal species. Among the Everglades' abundant wildlife are the endangered leatherback turtle, Florida panther, and West Indian manatee.
Many Floridian's are in agreement with the DEP and aren't happy about the court's ruling. Here's what some people are saying:
https://t.co/0uxZUOYCi0— Steven Woodruff (@stevendwoodruff) February 6, 2019
Tallahassee court approves "further degradation" of sensitive Everglades land and watershed for private oil drilling adventure. Destroy the environment? A marginal tax rate of 70% is here to claw back for the damages. We're not learning. #Florida
This breaks my heart. The Everglades is home to a rich, diverse ecosystem. So, they wanna kill it for cash. https://t.co/QuBieVE5gQ— Diana Lynn (@Diana65081822) February 6, 2019
Some people are even starting hashtag trends and tagging Gov. DeSantis, begging him to do something to stop the drilling:
#DontDrillTheEverglades Kanter Real Estate has been given the authority to drill for oil in the Everglades. We the people of Florida can not and should not allow this to happen. The Everglades is in such a fragile state right now. We must help save it.— Rob Weber (@robweber10) February 6, 2019
@GovRonDeSantis please stop the possibility of drilling in the Everglades!— Janet (@FloridaJanet13) February 6, 2019
All hope is not lost, however. Before the company is allowed to drill on the land, Boward county officials must agree to award permits and change land usage allowance.