Florida Spring Protection- Ocala Promises Solutions.
 
Florida Springs Protection

Our Salute to Mayor Kent Guinn as Ocala Best  Mayor's Race Candidates::  
 
Mayor Kent Guinn, and Randall  Alvord  Sky 97.3 interview a homerun for voters.  Business Solutions Randal Alvord is a member of Economic Action Team.

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 Governor Rick Scott sets stage for a new energized Florida Department of Environmental Protection.  Known for Truth and Effective Straight Talk, Hershel Vinyard Jr. appointment is confirmed by the Florida Senate.  Visit My Ocala and Springs Protection for more on the story.
 
Team Conservation is hoping to address the responsibility for Utilities to help cure the Springs Algae Problems.  Currently to little is known about alternative ways to discharge Sewer Effluent.  Processed Waste Water can become a profit source if the nitrate content is used beneficially.   DEP chief Herschel Vinyard Jr. is the right person at the right time to help turn old bad management practices into New Jobs and opportunities.  How can Processed Effluent lead to new technology opportunities?
 
Urban utilities are finding ways to solve the Effluent problem.  Exon is currently spending nearly $1 billion dollars to produce the right algae to turn nitrates and Co2 into an algae to fuel solution.   
 
 

 

 
 
Marion County Commission Chairman Stan McClain presents idea of Marion County taking over Silver Springs from the out of state interest who have had control during the Springs Decline.  During the past decades of decline the springs have been fed by Alachua Sewer Effluent pumped into the aquifer by Kanapaha Sewer plant authorities.  Called the Limestone Pipeline, nutrients at 1000 times the springs levels are discharged into the aquifer and flushed out at Silver Springs link to the St Johns River.  Silver Springs could become an Eco-Business drawing card, however citizens are reluctant to trust government at many levels.  The current lease requires the San Diego entertainment company to meet all environmental needs within 120 days, how ever the tenant has not performed to the requirements of the lease for many years.  Historically, State, County and Federal governments have organized around expanded regulation and control of growth.  Most processed effluent discharge is allowed if there is enough flow of fresh water to dilute the pollution being discharged.  Value of Springs water is not considered as water flows out to the Atlantic.  Questions are surfacing about the shortage of water when a Billion Gallons flow to the Ocean and Gulf daily.  Water flow is valued at $150 million daily.  If 50% was recirculated to the Aquifer and marketed, Floridians would benefit.  
 
Voter's trust in government has eroded over the past decade especially as all government agencies at all levels have expanded well beyond the increase of population.  Equally troublesome is the growth of Favorite Son contractors such as Pandion Systems and Wetland Solutions.  Millions of dollars have been spent on studies to justify actions by government agencies.  Example of studies used to expand government regulation: In 2003 FDEP wanted to exert control over recreational activity at Silver Glen/.  Pandion Systems was commissioned to study the apparent problems and the resulting study provided the basis for FDEP expansion of regulation. 
 
DCA, DEP and the Water Districts have promoted the idea of non point source educational programs as key to any pollution.  This protects point source polluters such as the 20 drainage wells in Ocala, and the permitted drainage by Gainesville into the aquifer via Kanapaha with Sewer Effluent, and the Alachua Sink via the many permitted water body conduits leading to the Alachua sink and the Floridan Aquifer.  Tax payer funded programs always ultimately focus blame on individuals and growth.  The anti growth impact of this policy has reduced state tax funding and caused a near collapse of Florida Government.  Actually, 3/4 of government at all levels is estimated to be of no value to citizens and the cause of the current regulation caused economic slowdown.

Word Just in:  New Scientific study may have traced high nitrates discharged by Kanapaha Sewer Plant.  The Gainesville Sewer Plant discharges over 6 million gallons of processed sewer effluent into the Drinking Water Aquifer daily.  Now 15 plus years later scientist are tracking the effluent to our springs.  Up until now scientific studies have gone out of their way to protect the sewer effluent dumping.  Now with the EPA breathing down their neck the FDEP and St Johns water district is thinking twice about covering for the big polluter.  What is hard to understand is the effort and money used to blame home owners for the dumping.  

 

Dumped at 400 feet, the mounding is now bringing the sewer effluent all the way to the surface and both our drinking water and our springs are suffering.  Marion County Commissioners may sue the Alachua County Polluters as a step in stopping the pollution.  Our Economic Future hangs in the balance.  If our water becomes so polluted that it must be filtered in order to be used as drinking water, then we will be less desirable as a place to choose to build a home. 

 

From St Johns District study:  Younger waters have the higher nitrates.  This is likely from the Kanapaha Sewer discharge of 6 million gallons per day.   It may be that Alachua Utility Pollution is going to be forced to stop discharging into the Drinking Water Aquifer.

The article “Using multiple chemical indicators to characterize and determine the age of groundwater from selected vents of the Silver Springs Group, central Florida, USA” ,will be published in Hydrogeology Journal: Volume 18, Issue 8 (2010), Page 1825.  This project was funded by the Springs Initiative over the course of 5 years.   Please forward to interested parties.

Abstract from the Report:

The Silver Springs Group, Florida (USA), forms the headwaters of the Silver River and supports a diverse ecosystem. The 30 headwater springs divide into five subgroups based on chemistry. Five selected spring vents were sampled in 2007 to better understand the contaminant sources and groundwater flow system. Elevated nitrate-N concentrations (>0.8 mg/L) in the five spring vents likely originate from inorganic (fertilizers) and organic sources, based on nitrogen and oxygen isotope ratios of nitrate. Evidence for denitrification in the Lost River Boil spring includes enriched δ15N and δ18O, excess N2 gas, and low dissolved O2 concentrations (<0.5 mg/L). Multiple age-tracer data (SF63H, tritiogenic 3He) for the two uppermost springs (Mammoth East and Mammoth West) indicate a binary mixture dominated by recent recharge water (mean age 6–7 years, and 87–97% young water). Tracer data for the three downstream spring vents (Lost River Boil, Catfish Hotel-1, and Catfish Conventional Hall-1) indicate exponential mixtures with mean ages of 26–35 years. Contamination from non-atmospheric sources of CFCs and SF5CF3 precluded their use as age tracers here. Variations in chemistry were consistent with mean groundwater age, as nitrate-N and dissolved O2 concentrations were higher in younger waters, and the Ca/Mg ratio decreased with increasing mean age. 

 

 

Senator Alan Hays and Don Browning work to solve Springs Attraction Problems.

 Senator Hays has long used a field inspection technique to understand the Utility Discharge problem in Springs Protection.

Looking at the Drains makes pollution sourcing much less complicated.  It doesn't take a Scientist to see the harm to the Aquifer and Springs.

Senator Hays opens the debate.  The public isn't the problem, its the Utilities doing the dumping.  Actually, even the people who go to work for the utilities did not cause the problem.  Most of the drainage problems have been decades in the making.  A person going to work for a utility can't blow the whistle on their first day, then each day that goes by the person becomes more identified with the problem and learns to defend deceptive, improper procedures in order to keep a government job.  Years later the person fully defends near criminal practices and does all they can to spin the story to keep the system going.  

 

The break through may come from new income sources that could come from changing the way Sewage Effluent is disposed of in the aquifer.  It may be better for the utility to sell the sewer effluent agricultural interest who would use the effluent as a watering source with 10 times the nutrient already as an ingredient.  It is estimated that less than 3% of the nitrates would reach the aquifer if the sewer effluent were spread on the surface farm fields.

Senator Hays can move quickly in the Legislature.  New Technology promises to use waste to make Energy declares Senator Hays.

New Solutions to Sewer and Stormwater contamination. Bio to Algae promises extreme value in waste water.

Stormwater authorities are asking middle school and high school youth to make a public service message about storm water and pollution.

Stormwater runoff is generated when precipitation from rain and snowmelt events flows over land or impervious surfaces and does not percolate into the ground. As the runoff flows over the land or impervious surfaces (paved streets, parking lots, and building rooftops), it accumulates debris, chemicals, sediment or other pollutants that could adversely affect water quality if the runoff is discharged untreated. The primary method to control stormwater discharges is the use of best management practices (BMPs). In addition, most stormwater discharges are considered point sources and require coverage under an NPDES permit. Especially when Stormwater is discharged into a sink hole or a Drainage well to the aquifer.

Activist Don Browning asks legislators to study the need for a new springs protection agency.  Springs Protection is being used as a "stop growth" tool.  Springs will stay covered in algae as long as Sewer Utilities dump effluent into underground springs.  If we can separate the Springs Protection assignment from the Utility Permitting assignment we have a chance of stopping the discharges of Storm and Sanitary sewer waste.  

 

Currently in a heated campaign for the 6th District Congressional Seat, Don Browning was happy to hear that Silver Springs landlord FDEP was finally holding the tenant to the lease requirements.  It will be difficult to monitor Silver Springs algae from Washington DC.

 FDEP can't regulate the utilities who do the discharging, and be in charge of protecting the springs at the same time.  There is a clear conflict of interest in the current arrangement.

 Regulating utilities know for discharge of sewer effluent and storm sewer discharge systems renders FDEP unable to administer Springs Protection program.  Springs only have 1 part per million of nitrates and DEP regularly approves 10 parts per million of nitrogen for draining to the aquifer. We will never clean the springs with a double standard for discharge of nutrients.  EPA is ready to require a standard for nitrates to the springs.

 FDEP funds help distract attention away from County Sink hole dumping.  Permits to dump directly into the aquifer leading to Silver Springs require educating the public, however the public is not doing the pollution.  Citizens are beginning to ask for government education.  What part of discharging into a sink hole is puzzling to county employees citizens ask.

County employees are required to blame the public for dump sites polluting Silver Springs.  Legislators are asked to investigate.  It will take time but we are on top of this problem stated a leading Senatorial Legislator. "We must be more honest with Florida's Citizens."

Why educate the public when it is the City and County utilities who are operating the discharge drains to the aquifer?  See wording by Marion County Sewer officials below.

"Public Education NGO's"  Sustainable Development is linked to most legislation as a political component.
Public outreach and education efforts require special discussion and are a specific component of maintaining compliance with the NPDES Phase II MS4 generic permit. Public outreach and education is used to target specific water quality issues and activities which create the water quality issues. An example would be developing and distributing literature on the proper application of fertilizer."

 

News Flash 11/1/2009 Don Browning reports for  Springs Protection . Com

Pollution approved by Florida Department of Environmental Protection is only 1/2 of the story. In a recent ruling a Judge ruled to require Water Dumping Standards for Utilities.  FDEP so far has been able to resist pressure to set standards on utilities.  Many citizens wonder why we need a environmental protection agency who will not even set standards, much less enforce dumping laws.

 

Legislators are expressing concern that DEP is making funding a political process.  In an efficiency move, the Legislators elected to channel all environmental funding grants through FDEP.  The result now appears that all levels of Florida's Local Governments receiving grants from DEP now must follow the political "Smoke Screen" program of educating the public in order to keep heat off the real polluters.  The public has been stunned to learn that utilities have been getting a free ride on polluting.  Citizens thought that a word to FDEP would bring in enforcement on Sink Hole dumping, for example.  

Utilities will be required to stop dumping Sewer and Storm water into sink holes and drainage wells if EPA requires Florida Department of Environmental Protection to set standards.  Citizens ask why FDEP is even needed if they operate without standards.  Using pollution deposited by utilities DEP is hiring community organizer groups to crisscross the state advocating land use changes.  Promoting springs protection has historically proved to be a good way to secure or increase funding from the legislature.

St Johns Water Management District is questioned about point source pollutants, piped into clean drinking water from Ocala Storm Sewer Systems in St Johns District.

Officials cite rules that allow the dumping of pollutants into clean drinking water underground.  Possible Double Standard is investigated by state elected officials.  Local environmentalist askes St Johns to explain the apparent double standard. 

City of Ocala and Marion County Storm Water Authorities are asked to stop dumping Acid Rain into underground streams leading to the Drinking Water Aquifer and Silver Springs.

ACID Rain must be kept out of underground Ocala.  Sink Holes are growing at a rate growing in proportion to the billions of gallons of acid rain collected and diverted into the Karst Geology under the city.  

 

Cheap use of underground streams to dump storm sewer billions of Gallons of ACID RAIN for decades is now haunting City Authorities.

In addition to polluting Silver Springs and the Drinking Water Aquifer.  Authorities are chemically melting the under pinnings of the Ccity of Ocala.  Who must pay for the damage and insurance.  Buildings may be at risk of collapse.  Water Supplies may be at risk of ruining the cities water supply.

Marion County Residents learn of City of Ocala's polluting of the areas Drinking Water Aquifer and express disbelief.

Springs Initiative is driving solutions.
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Protecting the Drinking Water Aquifer with modern solution.

Ocala, can step up to the plate and end old Bad Management Practices.  Come on Ocala, no one has the right to pollute a town's drinking water.

City of Ocala and Marion County Storm Sewer Dumping into the Aquifer will cause increased Water Rates if the pollution begins to show up in drinking water.

The pollution is already showing up at the Springs Attraction Silver Springs.  Experts estimate it will take millions of tax payers dollars to clean up the Storm Sewer Dumping into the Aquifer.

 

Like a fireman starting fires to justify more Fire Department Funding, Authorities are dumping and allowing Dumping of Algae Growing Nitrates into Sink Holes resulting in more pollution, and new springs protection funding for themselves.  These same authorities then claim the Springs are Threatened with Algae Growth, and file for funding to protect the springs from themselves.

The Land Lord of the Silver Springs Attraction has allowed dumping of oil laden storm sewer runoff to go directly into the Silver Springs and River for many years.  The same land lord allows the liquefaction of a large volume of Sewer Waste to be dumped into water surrounding Silver Springs. Charged with protecting the springs for the people of Florida, DEP has allowed pollution on the property for many years, all the while heading up the Springs Protection Initiative for the Legislature and the people of Florida.

 

  Inaction by State, City and County authorities is not an option that is acceptable to citizens of Marion County, and it is not an option that is acceptable to many legislators.

We essentially need a huge new historic recovery plan to stop the polluters.  We can not continue with the cover up that allows pollution to continue and to actually grow greater.  Natural or Man Made Sink Holes have been added to the bottom of nearly all Drainage Systems causing massive Algae Growth in Silver Springs.  Environmental Artist, Don Browning said; " if you look at nearly every springs or shore line around the state you will find a link to Storm Sewer nitrate dumping."  It is not acceptable to me, and certainly not acceptable to the citizens of Florida to cause pollution and then benefit financially from the pollution.
 

Cities and Private Companies acting as spokesmen for DEP benefit financially from pollution entering Silver Springs.

County Commissioners have uncovered gross tonnage of Nitrates dumping into Silver Springs.  For years The Ocala Star Banner and the City of Ocala have tried to blame and regulate the citizens of Marion County.  All the while, it was actually the City of Ocala dumping Storm Sewer from vast areas into 28 Drainage Wells.

Now the City has developed a new dump site adding to the pollution of the springs.  County Authorities recently toured the sink holes in the new Retention Pond at the 17th street project.  Not far away, less than a mile is a hugh sink hole used to dump County Storm Sewer Pollution.  Both of these point pollution sites will be tagged and monitored to determine the amount of Algae caused from their nitrates.

 

Communities such as Del Webb have been put under special regulation by the County Storm Water Engineers report causing major land use changes and new ordinances.  Recent legislation in Marion County misses the big polluter, the City of Ocala because the city is totally exempt from Marion County Springs Protection Laws. Soon the Citizens of Ocala may have to begin paying for the pollution caused by years of dumping.  EPA authorities are zoning in on dumping prractices in Florida Cities as it will soon cause added cost to drinking water costs.

Ocala Utilities Dumps along with Rinker Clean out
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Clean out Pit Dumps into Sink Holes Polluting Silver Springs.

Marion County Chairman Charlie Stone declares Springs Protection ineffective covering less than 25% of the County.  Commissioner Stone presented map evidence showing most of Marion County is actually exempt from proposed Fertilizer Ordinances.   DEP coordinator Mr. Pete Colverson representing Pandion Systems, Inc., declared Chairman Charlie Stone's Map, to be "Misleading to the Public".  He also felt Mr. George Albright Jr.'s presentation was not valid.  George Albright's presentation was   received by all those who would be regulated. 

Mr. Colverson lives in Alachua and has no standing as a citizen who would be regulated by the proposed regulations.

Urban areas with a history of pollution are now to be required to pass legislation to clean up pollution if citizens outside of the exempt city limits are to be regulated.

 Cities fight to Regulate Growth outside city limits.

The message to Ocala and Dunnellon is clear, "plead for regulation on yourselves before asking for regulations on your neighbors.  The Cities are mostly anti-development out side their city limits.  Populations are voting with their feet in receient years.  in 1950 Ocala represented nearly 60% of Marion County Population.  Today Ocala has fallen to less than 23% of Marion County.  The Trend is Clear!

Commissioner Stan McClain asked a Dunnellon City Commissioner to go back to Dunnellon and pass the fertilizer regulations on the community near Rainbow Springs and River.  McClain pointed out that most of Marion County is actually exempt from the Proposed Ordinances.  Some in the crowd especially from Alachua County, were eager to change Marion County land use code, as a way to stop development.  Pandion Systems of Alachua County has a long history of attempting to get changes to Marion County Land Use Code.

Legislators are growintg weary of spending $millions$ to fund DEP Coordinators attempting to change land use code in counties with Springs.

Legislators will examine the Millions of Tax Dollars requested annually to hold meetings promoting political action.  Local citizens in Marion County complain that the real polluters go unregulated for decades while new laws regulate citizens with no record of pollution.  Citizens point to large industrial pollution sources owned by cities near springs.

Usually political efforts are financed by the political group interested in a particular change.  Stopping home building is the goal requiring Land Use Plan changes.  Alachua County DEP coordinator company Pandion Systems is the main recipient of Tax Funded programs for nearly 10 years.  Legislators may question more closely the need for DEP to have spokesman organizations to coordinate local political groups. Tax revenues will be short enough to likely axe programs that can be funded by private efforts.   Having an impact politically may not be enough to keep tax dollars flowing into Pandion Systems in 2008 - 09.      

Learn how we can clean our Springs!

US Department of the Interior US Geological Survey Floridan Aquifer Click to View Aquifer

Stop Bad Management Practices- Help Environmental Superheroes promote Best Management Practices. Stop pipes into Sinks! Click Here for Marion Springs Protection.

Marion County Citizens ask Ocala to clean up!
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StormWater Sewer System is polluting Silver Springs.

Ocala City Map of Drains Polluting Ground Water
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Decades old the problem needs Cabinet Attention.

 After Thousands of years and hundreds of miles, the Floridan Aquifer Water arrives at Silver Springs.  Minutes from Flowing Out, Clean and Clear, the City of Ocala empties the Cities Storm Sewer Pipes into Ground Water under Ocala.  28 Pipes send Funky Stuff loaded with Nitrates into the ground water of the Floridan Aquifer feeding Silver Springs. 
 
Additionally, the City of Gainesville sends Treated Sewer Affluent into the Floridan Aquifer. 
 
We are asking state, Federal, City and County officials to stop this pollution.  If some dumping is needed during the cleanup period for Public Safety to prevent Flooding, then we will ask the Cabinet and Governor Crist to permit the Pipes for a short time.
 
 The City of Ocala Florida found to have a Storm Sewer System that dumps directly into the Aquifer, and is polluting Silver Springs and River.  The City of Ocala has been pumping Storm Water from Basin to Basin across the City to the Springs Basin.  County Commissioners and DEP are questioning the wisdom of shipping nitrates out of the city of Ocala down to Silver Springs via the Stormwater Sewer System.
 
Marion County Storm Water Division hopes to reduce City of Ocala pollution to our Ground Water and Silver Springs.  Overland Storm Sewer and Underground drainage of polluting Urban Runoff.
 
City of Ocala experiences about 30 to 40 Billion Gallons of Stormwater over its 38 plus square miles annually.
 
Experts estimate that over 1/2 of the stormwater volume reaches the Ocala Storm Sewer System, and much of that will wash into the Aquifer, Silver Springs and Silver River.  The County Stormwater staff estimate of tons of animal waste plus atmospheric nitrogen loading shows why Silver Springs is receiving too much pollution.
 
 
 
 

Marion County Stormwater Staff warnings:
 
Potential Impacts of Stormwater Pollution:
. Unsafe drinking water
Fish Kills
 
. Sink Hole creation by years of ACID RAIN dumped into the Storm Sewer System using sink holes as drains.
 
Impacts to drinking water supplies, which may reduce available potable water or require costly treatments to achieve drinking water standards. 
 
 
 
Storm Water in a major problem across Florida. Citizens ask the City of Ocala Florida to clean up storm-water pollution to Silver Springs.  28 drain sites send Pet waste and other Nitrates directly into Silver Springs causing Algae Bloom.  
 
City of Ocala sends Nitrates directly to Silver Springs and Silver River.  Marion County Storm Water Division states, When pet waste is left on the ground or curb, rain and irrigation systems can wash it into storm drains.  Water in Storm Drains is not treated.  It goes directly into Lakes, Rivers and Springs - Carrying Pollution from pet waste with it.  Direct Storm Drains in Ocala send 3 to 10 tons of Dog and Cat waste into the Aquifer and Springs every day.
 
Citizens are often blamed for pollution in the springs, however Cities and DOT are the big players.   Marion County Unincorporated Citizens were blamed for pollution until City of Ocala was found with 28 Drainage Wells.  Marion County Commissioners not keen on asking county residents outside of Ocala to foot the bill for City of Ocala Storm Sewer Solutions.
 
Many Storm Water Sewer Systems have been in place for nearly 50 years.
Ocala can solve the pollution problems that is now causing millions of gallons of nitrate laden storm water to enter the Aquifer and Silver Springs.

We have solutions and answers. Marion County Residents will help, DEP will help, DOT will help.

We must work together if we are to stop the pollution at Silver Springs, and our Aquifer.

Click here: Marion Springs Protection . Com for Answers!

 

Just In:  Marion County Springs Protection Program is now focusing on the City of Ocala and Dunnellon as prime polluters of Silver and Rainbow Springs.

 

Silver Springs is being polluted by 28 Storm Sewer drainage punctures polluting the ground water flowing to Silver Springs.  

 The Department of Environmental Protection is putting pressure on communities through the Springs Initiative.  Initially homes and citizens were blamed for nutrients in the springs.  Now County Commissioners have been told there are 28 Direct Storm Sewer Drainage Wells Dumping into Silver Springs.  

Springs Working Groups are bringing attention to Storm Sewer Drainage Systems that have been polluting the Springs.

 

The City of Ocala is a major contributor of Nitrates with over land pumping from Basin to Basin shipping Storm Sewer Pollution to Silver Springs.

 

 

 

 

Ocala can pass Springs Protection Laws
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Ocala can stop polluting Silver Springs!