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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Water wars put springs in spotlight

Older article but good info Published May 14, 2007
The Lilly Springs proposal comes on the heels of a unrelated plan at nearby July Springs, where the owner of Ginnie Springs resort wants to bottle 600,000 gallons a day.

Advocates say the Suwannee district's springs already show signs of excessive withdrawals. Jim Stevenson, the head of a state group charged with protecting Ichetucknee Springs, said the feature called a "spring boil" - or the bubbling effect caused by a strong springs flow - is a relic of the past because of excessive pumping

Water withdrawals from the Floridan Aquifer already increased by more than 500 percent from 1950 to 2000, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

PCS Phosphate near White Springs is allowed to draw up to an average of 248 million gallons a day.

Progress Energy, is allowed to draw up to 220 million gallons (But most of the water is used in the plant's cooling process and eventually returned to the river.)

Buckeye Florida is allowed to draw up to an average of 49 million gallons a day for its pulp mill near Perry.

The Division of Forestry's Andrews Nursery can withdraw up to an average of 11.7 million gallons a day for its pine-growing operation near Chiefland.
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Slave Canal Canoe Trip: June 30, 2007

We will paddle this spring-fed stream, meandering 5 miles through a remote and pristine swamp that will take you away from civilization for a while. The pace will be leisurely with swimming and nature observation along the way. The stream is narrow and blocked in places with fallen trees, so some maneuvering skill is needed. Free. Limit 12 canoes. To sign up, contact Steve Haley (850) 216-1764 or kneadtorelax2002atyahoo.com.
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Pollution plan for springs debated

Published 6/9/07
A Friday morning discussion between commissioners and staff focused on two specific pieces of the long discussed proposal to change the county's land development code. Both would apply to new development in the the county's primary and secondary springs protection zones, areas of high recharge to Silver Springs and Rainbow Springs.

The first part would establish a set percentage of property that has to be in a natural state to recharge the aquifer. The second piece would create more stringent guidelines for stormwater retention areas in these springs protection zones.
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Sunday, June 10, 2007

Area citizens group is hoping to stopper water-bottling permits

Published June 04, 2007
A citizens group is calling for a moratorium on water-bottling permits on the springs of the Santa Fe River, saying water withdrawals threaten to drain the river and nearby wells.

While just one bottler now uses water from those springs, as many as four more projects are in the works. The five permits combined could mean more than a billion gallons pulled each year from springs feeding a three-mile stretch of river.

A flurry of new water-bottling proposals on the springs feeding the lower Santa Fe led to the group's formation. The proposals come as the water district is still more than a year away from establishing minimum flows and levels for the river and springs, which will guide future water permitting.

On the Santa Fe springs, Coca-Cola's water-bottling plant in High Springs has the only permit actively being used. The plant is permitted to withdraw an average of 1.15 million gallons a day in the Ginnie Springs area.
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