Tags: florida | georgia | oysters

Florida Sues Georgia to Protect Oyster Farmers in Water Dispute

Tuesday, 01 Oct 2013 02:30 PM

 

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Florida filed a lawsuit on Tuesday asking the U.S. Supreme Court to reduce neighboring Georgia's use of water from the Chattahoochee River that feeds the oyster beds and fish-spawning areas of Florida's Gulf Coast.

"Georgia has refused to fairly share the waters that flow between our two states," Florida Governor Rick Scott said in a statement explaining his reasons for the lawsuit, the latest chapter of a decades-old feud over water rights.

"Generations of Florida families have relied upon these waters for their livelihood, but now risk losing their way of life if Georgia's actions are not stopped," he added.

The governor and local officials say the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has allowed Georgia to impound water upstream in large reservoirs, at the expense of oysters beds in Apalachicola Bay.

Low water levels in the bay have resulted in higher salinity, increased disease and predators in the oyster beds.

Georgia, Alabama and Florida have been discussing agriculture, industry and recreational uses of the Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers, which form the Apalachicola River about 50 miles north.

A spokesman for Georgia Governor Nathan Deal called Florida's lawsuit "frivolous."

"Florida is receiving historically high water flows at the state line this year, but it needs a bogeyman to blame for its poor management of Apalachicola Bay," the spokesman, Brian Robinson, said in a statement.

"This lawsuit is political theater and nothing more," Robinson added.

The metro Atlanta area gets most of its water - 360 million gallons a day - from the Chattahoochee River and Georgia's consumption is expected to nearly double by 2035, Florida says.

Shannon Hartsfield, president of the Franklin County Seafood Workers Association, said workers, who used to get six or eight 60-pound bags of oysters a day from the bay, are now lucky to get two or three.

He said "it's going to get worse" for the local economy, with many boat owners leaving the Florida Panhandle in search of work.

"I'm just worried that the lawsuit is going to take a long time," he said. "I'd like to see the governors get together and work out a solution."

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Dershowitz: Hollywood Should Have Followed Rushdie Example

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 22:29 PM

Hollywood should have rallied around Sony Pictures and released "The Interview" jointly online, says Harvard law profess . . .

Army Pulls ROTC Job Posting Requiring Christian Candidates

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 22:18 PM

The Army has pulled a job posting at an Illinois religious college that required leaders of its ROTC program to be Chris . . .

Military Analysts: Bergdahl Report to Show He Deserted

Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 21:52 PM

The Army's report on Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will show he deserted, but not that he is a traitor, two military analysts famil . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved