From left: Michael Kanuka (Rotary Club of Vero Beach), Pam O'Donnell (Sunrise Rotary Vero Beach), Mark Yanno (Clean Water Coalition of IRC), Matt Mitts (City of Vero Beach), Frank Gidus (Florida CCA).
The Revegetation of the Riverside Canal Project
The Clean Water Coalition of Indian River County (CWC) is pleased to invite the public to view a recently completed salt marsh revegetation project at Riverside Park in Vero Beach. The CWC partnered with the Vero Beach Rotary Club, Coastal Conservation Association of Florida, Sunrise Rotary Club, and the City of Vero Beach to fund and complete this project.
In order to maintain flood control, the City of Vero Beach removed all the vegetation including mangrove trees that were impeding flow in the drainage canal along the north side of the park which connects to the Indian River Lagoon. Four species of salt marsh vegetation were planted along the perimeter of the almost 2000 linear foot shoreline. Valuable salt marshes in this area of the Lagoon have all but disappeared due to mosquito impoundment creation and sea level rise allowing mangroves to dominate. Educational signage has been installed describing the filtering and habitat benefits of this restored salt marsh.
Right to Clean Water – proposed Florida Constitution Amendment
As cited on the “Right to Clean Water” organization website:
The historical nature of Florida politics has been to support profit-making special interests with essentially a “right to pollute.”
The proposed amendment to Florida’s Constitution:
would “constitutionalize” that every Floridian has “a fundamental right to clean and healthy waters”;
allows Floridians to enforce this right through the ability to sue state executive agencies …that harm or threaten harm to Florida waters”;
The “Right to Clean Water” organization seeks Florida citizens to sign a petition (see link) to place the proposed amendment on the 2024 General Election ballot.
The most compelling argument for the proposed Right to Clean Water constitutional amendment is to:
establish the constitutional right to clean water for all Floridians - a fundamental human need; and
create the foundation for legal standing in litigation to produce court orders forcing to enforce existing laws, restore water resources, and ultimately meet the basic human need for clean water.
As cited in its Mission statement: “The Clean Water Coalition of Indian River County (CWC) is dedicated to the protection and restoration of our waters through advocacy, education, conservation, and restoration; by working in collaboration with private and governmental entities.” CWC:
recognizes the fundamental right of Florida residents to clean and healthy waters – as needed to preserve our natural environment and sustain human life;
will continue to seek to restore and protect water resources in Indian River County in collaboration with local, state, and federal governments; and
alerts CWC partners to the need for petitions to allow the proposed Right to Clean Water constitutional amendment to be on the 2024 General Election ballot.
On the Potential Three Corners Marina
There would appear to be three primary options for the potential Marina development as part of the Three Corners project.
A full-service Marina
A Marina with day docking only, no overnight stays.
Marina with day docking except for overnight guests at the hotel. No sleeping on board.
Whichever option is chosen, particular attention should be given to the exposed nature of the site. Unlike the city Marina which is in a very sheltered location, this Marina would be very exposed to winds from all directions except from the West. The effect of winds in creating wave action is largely related to so-called “fetch” - the distance the wind-driven waves travel uninterrupted by land or other obstacles. A classic example of this was last year at Causeway Cove Marina. This Marina faces south on the south side of the Ft. Pierce south bridge. Hurricanes in the northern hemisphere rotate counterclockwise, so as Ian passed to our West the strong resulting southerly winds, unimpeded along the lagoon from Stewart to Fort Pierce devastated the Marina. It’s important to note as well that this was new construction.
The proposed Marina at Three Corners is similar in orientation, albeit with a little more protection from the bridge and the island to the south.
At a minimum, this would need in-slip pump out, not a very attractive view for restaurant patrons and others. Bathroom facilities would also be required, along with dock hands, registration, and 24/7 security - possibly fencing, locking gates or patrols. Fuel service would not be necessary.
This Marina would compete directly with the city Marina a few hundred yards North.
Docking would be allowed, say, from dawn to dusk for boats visiting to dine or participate in other activities. Space available could be first come first serve but would probably need some control via a reservation system and dock hands.
DAY DOCKING WITH USE FOR HOTEL GUESTS
This option may need some slips to be set aside. The hotel could provide the reservation system and dock hands. No sleeping on board.
The Clean Waters Coalition of Indian River County favors the day dock option with or without hotel use. There are concerns about a full-service Marina for the reasons outlined above.
2024 Emerson E-Series
Sponsored by the Clean Water Coalition, The Emerson Center’s E-Series is a platform for lifelong learners and community advocates in Vero Beach. This lecture series invites you to explore a wide array of topics from the depths of our oceans to the echoes of local history. We encourage all who are passionate about these subjects to join us for these enriching evenings.
These lectures are free, with a suggested $10 donation. They all start at 7:00 p.m. at The Emerson Center, 1590 27th Ave, Vero Beach, FL. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Come join the conversation and be part of the movement to protect and understand our natural and historical treasures.
The 5th Transforming Landscapes for a Sustainable Future Conference is set for January 20, 2024, at The Emerson Center, Vero Beach. This key event focuses on sustainable practices and ecosystem restoration, featuring speakers like Dr. Craig N. Huegel and Maya Dutta. With topics from sustainable landscapes to rewilding methods, and native plant sales, it's a nexus for environmental advocacy. The Clean Water Coalition of Indian River County proudly sponsors this initiative, reinforcing its dedication to environmental education and healthy waterways. For a greener future, register at PelicanIslandAudubon.org.