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Treasure Coast Essay

Addressing polluted discharges from Lake O

I’m not much for public forums.  Presentations from the dais.  Comments from the floor.  Blah-blah-blah.  Maybe you feel the same way.  But one is coming we should think about attending.  It’s a state senate hearing on the Indian River Lagoon’s declining health – and specifically the discharging of polluted water from Lake Okeechobee into the lagoon via the St. Lucie River Estuary.  It will be held on Thursday, August 22nd, at the Kane Center, 900 South East Salerno Road in Stuart.  The hearing will start at 1 p.m., and is scheduled to go until 9 to accommodate all the speakers.  State Senator Joe Negron, Republican of Stuart, will preside.  Four panels will include representatives from the state Department of Environmental Protection, the South Florida Water Management District and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, plus scientists and environmentalists.  Opponents of the discharges say the polluted water kills plant and marine life and causes algae bloom.  The Army Corps of Engineers says the releases prevent parts of the aging Herbert Hoover Dike from collapsing.  If you want to speak, go to TCPalm.com to see how to register.  Let’s hope the eight-hour meeting will lead to action and not just more words.  For 88.9 FM, this is Paul Janensch.