Well no use talking more about the fires since everyone has smelled and heard about them in Florida. I worked a 5,000 acre fire in Fakahatchee Strand Preserve for three days.
In a rare move against development, both the state, feds, and Army Corp of Engineers have recommended against the Magnolia Bay development in Taylor County. (Formerly known as Boggy Bay.)
One of the few areas left in Florida which hasn't been ruined by development is the gulf coast/big bend area of Florida. One of my favorite drives is from Ocala to Tallahassee along highways 27 & 98.
Well a St. Petersburg doctor was pushing for a resort development that would have ruined the estuary on the Taylor county coast. Magnolia Bay would have included a huge resort with condominiums and even a small airport. The worst part would have been a canal dredged through the estuary that was seven feet deep and two miles long, destroying vital estuary and sea grass areas.
This area of Taylor County is one of the few undeveloped estuaries left in Florida. Much of the Atlantic's seafood, fish and shellfish develop in the Florida estuaries. This is a vital link of life on the planet earth, and if we lose it, then the oceans are in big trouble.
Everywhere in Florida where estuaries have been developed has been destroyed. Tampa & Miami are obvious. But other estuaries that have died from man's pollution and development have been Naples Bay and Fort Myers, and even the Estero Bay Preserve. Just the simplest development has proven to be very destructive to the estuaries. Marco Island is threatening the Ten Thousand Islands.
And there is almost nothing to stop development from destroying estuaries and wetlands. All builders do is pay mitigation, which are fines paid to destroy these areas. The money is suppose to be used to restore natural areas elsewhere, but it never works out that way. And once you destroy estuaries, nobody has been successful at bringing them back.
Magnolia Bay failed to show how they would be able to build without a negative effect on the estuary. And could not rationally explain how they would not destroy the vital sea grasses.
And not only that, but the "No Name" storm in March 1993 destroyed a local small community. Magnolia Bay could not say how they could prevent from being washed away from a similar future storm.
So it is nice to see that the state and feds are finally putting a limit on destructive development.