Miami Waterkeeper: Protecting Coral Reefs from Dredging Impacts
Corals adjacent to the Port of Miami are suffering profound sediment damage from ongoing dredging of the nearby shipping channel. Miami Waterkeeper (f.k.a. Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper) has filed a citizen suit in response to the failure of state and federal agencies to enforce laws meant to safeguard our reefs. Through funding of this project, they will continue their advocacy through the remaining six months of dredging. Furthermore, the expansion of Port Everglades, just up the coast, is now being pushed through review. Advocacy and community organizing is needed to protect its vast and relatively pristine reef from similar devastation.
This project includes: 1) Port of Miami reef monitoring, 2) Port of Miami legal advocacy, and 3) Port Everglades community outreach and advocacy. Over the past six months, they have routinely monitored these reefs for dredging impacts. Miami Waterkeeper reports ultimately prompted NOAA to issue emergency coral relocation recommendations to the Corps. By continuing to document reef conditions, they can help ensure that future construction projects have adequate protections, monitoring, and mitigation for marine ecosystems.