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Construction Underway of Pump Station Critical to Everglades Restoration Project. Here’s Why You Should Care.

Posted on March 27, 2023

In an effort to help restore the Everglades Ecosystem, construction of a large pump station has officially begun to help rehydrate coastal wetlands and prevent too much freshwater discharge into Biscayne Bay.

It has been 20 years in the making, but on Tuesday Miami-Dade County leaders got to toss the ceremonial dirt signifying the start of construction for a pump station in the Cutler Bay area.

It was the final and most significant piece of the Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands Project.

South Florida Water Management District Governing Board Member Charlie Martinez said without it, Biscayne Bay and the local economy would be in trouble.

“We would have a lot more of the fish kills and the algae blooms that we had a year or two ago and it would just continue to die,” said Martinez.

When it rains, water runoff carrying pollutants discharges into Biscayne Bay via canals. The pollutants affect the critical ecosystem which is an important food source for the endangered Florida manatee and the home of commercially important species like shrimp, crab and lobster.

The newly celebrated pump station will be built upstream and will divert the water away from the precious resource.

Martinez said the project cost about $400 million in taxpayer money over 13 years.

According to Miami-Dade County Mayor, Daniella Levine-Cava, this project will help reverse mistakes of years past.

“All of these canals, dredging over the decades has interfered with this natural state and has put our environmental in peril,” said Levine-Cava.

The pump station that will soon be constructed will work in tandem will one already functioning at Deering Estate.

The pumps will redirect the water to 1,700 acres of wetlands north where Mother Nature can naturally clean the water before it makes its way back to the Biscayne Bay.

Martinez said this project is the only way to bring Biscayne Bay back to life.

“This is our Mount Rushmore; we have to take care of it and if we don’t then what do we have?” said Martinez.

Construction of the new pump station is expected to be completed in 2025.


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