What's at Stake
Thousands of trees on the nature Crowley Museum and Nature Center's property and in Flatford Swamp in the upper Myakka River were being killed by the practice of flooding vegetable fields with groundwater for irrigation.
Tomato growers in Florida were using so much irrigation water that it flooded downstream lands and was killing thousands of acres of bottomland hardwoods. Earthjustice sued on behalf of a downstream nature center to force the farmers to contain their irrigation water.
In October 2008, Earthjustice won an appeal of this case, and the growers were forced to reduce their runoff. The Second District Court of Appeal in Lakeland decided that a trial court improperly dismissed the case on the theory that the water management district could not be required to stop the flooding.
The U.S. House of Representatives was a in a cruel mood, yesterday, when it passed H.R. 2018, a bill that would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from protecting our nation's waterways and drinking supplies—and give that power to the states.