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Florida Water Advocates Take Case To Washington D.C.

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida's Jennifer Hecker holding up toxic algae samples from Florida at a meeting with federal lawmakers in Washington DC this week.
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Federal, state and local scientists brought Florida’s freshwater crisis to Washington D.C. on Thursday.  They met with congressmen to talk about the damage.

Scientists met with Rep. Curt Clawson, (R-Bonita Springs)and Rep. Patrick Murphy, (D-Jupiter)-- both of their Florida districts are struggling with Lake Okeechobee freshwater water releases. The Sanibel-CaptivaConservation Foundation’s Rae AnnWesselwas on the trip. She said she hopes the trip raises awareness about the issue.

"This was an opportunity to highlight, very publicly, what the issue is all about," said Wessel. "And I think because this dirty water has been in the national news, it is imperative that we have a national conversation about these issues."

She said a key solution is for the state to buy land south of the lake to store, treat and move excess flows. Congressmen Clawson and Murphy are sponsoring a bill to allocate millions of dollars for these land purchases.

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Jessica Meszaros is a reporter and host of All Things Consideredfor WGCU News.