Title: Pinellas' Changing Water Story
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/WL00002315/00001
 Material Information
Title: Pinellas' Changing Water Story
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Publisher: Tampa Tribune
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: Pinellas' Changing Water Story, 9/9/1994
General Note: Box 10, Folder 14 ( SF-Water Use Caution Areas-SWFWMD - 1993-1994 ), Item 30
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: WL00002315
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Holding Location: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text

Pinellas' changing water story

Pinellas County officials need to get their
water stories straight Last month, after the
Southwest Florida Water Management District
ordered an emergency reduction in wellfield
pumping to ease the drying up of lakes and
wetlands in Hillsborough and Pasco counties,
'Pinellas authorities claimed that the lingering
drought, not pumping, was to blame for envi-
ronmental damage.
, But now that the water district is consider-
ing restrictions that would prohibit any envi-
ronmental damage outside the boundaries of a
well or wellfeld property, Pinelas' stand sud-
ldenly changes.
Pinellas attorney Edward de Parte says
the proposed rule would mean Tampa Bay's
regionall wellfleld pumping would have to be
cut by 75 percent Water suppliers, he says,
would be forced to buy large tracts of land
around the wellfields, which could result in
costs upwards of $500 million. Water prices, in
turn, would go up by 800 percent
But if the drought not the wellfelds is
largely responsible for the environmental dam-
age, why is Pinellas so concerned?
I Such scare tactics, alas, are characteristic
Of the water debate and the reason the public
Is so cynical about water suppliers' claims of

If Pinellas officials want to resolve the re-
gion's water shortage, they will stop these his-
trionics. Unfortunately, Pinellas and its ally in
litigation, the West Coast Regional Water
Supply Authority, seem more concerned with
battling the water district than protecting re-
sources. The water district wants suppliers to
develop new water sources and increase con-
Not all of the district's proposals may be
practical and, to be sure, Pinellas and the wa-
ter authority should participate in the develop-
ment of solutions.
But the bottom line is this: Lakes and wet-
lands are drying up. Wells are going bad. Pinel-
las' and West Coast's duplicitous responses'
won't do.
Water district officials think de la Parte's
dire projections are exaggerated. But it's time,
everybody faced the facts. It's no longer going
to be cheap and easy to supply water to West
Central Florida's expanding population of 2
million. The true price of that water includes
the cost of protecting natural resources and
private property. The alternative is to allow
wellfields to blight the landscape and ruin
neighborhoods. Is that what Pinellas wants?
Maybe. Let's see what story it comes up with


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