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Water-Related News

EPA workshops, webinars seek comments on nutrient criteria

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold information sessions and webinars to solicit public comment on its proposed federal rules to protect Florida waterways from excess nitrogen and phosphorus. These pollutants, called "nutrients," cause algal blooms, contaminate drinking water supplies and are among the largest contributors to water quality problems.

EPA recently approved the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's revised nutrient pollution rules for statewide springs, lakes, streams and some estuaries. However, in accordance with a 2009 consent decree with the Florida Wildlife Federation and-because the state's rules do not cover some coastal waters, many estuaries and a subset of flowing waters-EPA has proposed two federal rules that address these waters.

EPA will hold information sessions for the public to learn more about its proposed rules and submit written comments. While verbal comments will not be taken/recorded, EPA representatives will be available to help attendees submit their written comments electronically. The sessions will have an "open house" format, and will be held in Tampa at the Hotel Tampa (formerly the Hyatt Regency Tampa), at 211 North Tampa Street, on the following dates and times:
  • Thursday, January 17, 1 to 7 pm
  • Friday, January 18, 9 am to 1 pm

EPA will also hold three webinars to provide opportunities for the public to learn more about its proposed rules and submit both written and oral comments. The webinars will be held on the following dates and times:
  • Tuesday, January 22, 10 am to noon
  • Wednesday, January 23, 6 to 8 pm
  • Thursday, January 24, 2 to 4 pm