November 02, 2016
Lake Okeechobee Locals Damning Reservoir
non-profit group is launching what it calls a grass-roots campaign to fight
incoming Senate President Joe Negronís 2.4 billion-dollar plan for a massive
reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee.
St. Lucie Republican says itís necessary to fight water pollution, but the Lake
Okeechobee Business Alliance says it will destroy the local economy.
Alliance founder Julia du Plooy describes
herself as a stay-at-home mother of an 8-month-old daughter and a concerned
citizen. U.S. Sugar opposes the plan, but du Plooy insists her non-profit
group is not an industry front.
ďItís mom and pop farmers that farm there,
thatís their livelihood that heís looking to purchase. Yeah, itís owned by a
large company, but these small farmers are who farm there and who makes a
She says hundreds of jobs and a way of life
are at stake. The group is kicking off the opposition campaign with a protest
rally this weekend at Civic Park in Clewiston.
The protest comes as the Everglades
Foundation mounts a 12-day bus tour promoting the reservoir. Proponents hope
the storage area will divert phosphorous-laden water that is causing toxic
algae blooms in the Caloosahatchee and Port St. Lucie estuaries.