Everglades Agricultural Area Storage Reservoir Project
Article Reference: Everglades Agricultural Area Storage Reservoir Project
EAA Without Delay
The SFWMD is working hard to continue accelerating the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) Storage Reservoir. A component of the state-federal Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP), the project will send clean water south to the parched Southern Everglades and Florida Bay while reducing damaging discharge events from Lake Okeechobee to the east and west coasts. The reservoir is anticipated to hold 240,000 acre-feet of water and include a new constructed treatment wetland, known as a Stormwater Treatment Area, to provide additional water quality benefits.
Gov. Ron DeSantis made expediting the completion of the EAA Storage Reservoir a key priority with one of his first executive orders, Achieving More Now For Florida’s Environment . The order instructs SFWMD to start the next phase of design work on the project and ensure the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approves the project according to schedule.
SFWMD is working to fulfill that direction expeditiously by:
- Starting full design work of the A-2 STA as early as June 2019. Preliminary design work on the site has already begun.
- Working to obtain permits for early site preparation work.
- Expediting the design of the inflow canal that will bring water diverted from Lake Okeechobee to the reservoir and STA. Expediting the design will allow construction of the canal to begin as soon as site preparation work is completed.
- Surveying canals to expedite the design of canal improvements needed for the conveyance of water to the site.
The EAA Reservoir Project was conditionally authorized in the federal Water Resources Development Act of 2000 as a component of CERP. To accelerate progress on the project, Senate Bill 10 was passed by the Florida Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott in 2017. In 2018, the U.S. Congress provided the required federal authorization and approved a plan developed by the South Florida Water Management District.
The project includes a combination of canals, stormwater treatment areas (STAs), and a storage reservoir—all intended to improve water quality in America’s Everglades. SFWMD expects to begin the full design of the A-2 Stormwater Treatment Area (STA) component of the project soon and is working to obtain state and federal permits to clear land for the construction of a canal for the project. Right now, critical site preparation and preliminary design work is underway.
As part of the extensive public process for the EAA Storage Reservoir Project, the District is conducting a series of computer modeling runs to inform the development of the project’s features. As new modeling results are released, they will be posted at the FTP link below.
Public Planning Meetings
The District conducted a series of meetings to solicit public input on the EAA Storage Reservoir Project. Presentations, videos and materials from these meetings are posted in the archive below.
These public meetings were consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process. The NEPA process provides an opportunity for the public to give input related to the project.