On January 29, 2015 at 05:55PM, Suwannee River Water Management District published the following article:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Abby Johnson
Office of CommunicationsSuwannee River Water Management
District386.362.1001 or 800.226.1066 (FL)
Brooks Sink aquifer recharge project underway Pictured from left to right Danny Riddick, Bradford County Commissioner; Dan Cook Legislative Aide to Representative VanZant; Rhett Roberts Legislative Aide to Senator Bradley; Dr. George Cole, SRWMD Board; Alphonas Alexander, SRWMD Board; Kevin Brown, SRWMD Board; Dr. Ann Shortelle Executive Director, SRWMD; Don Quincey Jr., Chair SRWMD Board; Jon Steverson, Secretary DEP; Doug Long, Vice President of Forestry for Rayonier; Mike Bell, Rayonier; Virginia Johns, SRWMD; Representative Clovis Watson Jr.
LIVE OAK, FL, January 29, 2015 –
Today, the restoration of a natural connection to the Floridan Aquifer will highlight in Bradford County through efforts by the Suwannee River Water Management District (District) and Rayonier Operating Company, LLC (Rayonier).
A project kickoff ceremony was held to celebrate the Brooks Sink aquifer recharge that will contribute significantly to the flow of the Santa Fe River and associated springs. Newly appointed Secretary of DEP, Jon Steverson, spoke favorably of the event. “North Florida’s sinks and springs are perfect examples of the interaction between the aquifer and the landscape,” said DEP Secretary Jon Steverson.
“I want to thank the Suwannee River Water Management District and Rayonier for their innovation and collaboration on this project.” Almost half a century ago ditches were dug that eventually drained the wetlands. The man-made ditches divert surface water runoff to another watershed resulting in system losses due to evaporation and tide. Now, under Rayonier’s ownership, reconnecting the natural path to the sink became a priority.
“We have long recognized that North Florida’s abundant, renewable working forests – the dominant land use in the region – hold the key to solving many water resource challenges including water quality and springs protection, flood control, alternative water supply and aquifer recharge,” said Doug Long, Vice President, U.S. Operations, for Rayonier.
“We are so pleased to work with the Suwannee River Water Management District through this creative and cost-effective public-private partnership to restore historic water flows to Brooks Sink, recharge underground aquifers and improve the flow of the Santa Fe River and local springs.” Ann Shortelle, Director of the District stated, “It is with great excitement that the District joins Rayonier to protect natural resources. This partnership reflects a proactive, cost effective approach to recharging water supplies and protecting future resources.”
This project is a demonstration that sometimes the most effective solution is to follow nature’s path, literally. A flashboard riser or water control structure will reestablish the natural flow back to the sink, known as Brooks Sink. An estimated 220 million gallons of water per year will flow into the aquifer. That’s enough water to fill 333 Olympic sized pools to capacity each year.
LIVE OAK, FL, January 29, 2015 – Today, the restoration of a natural connection to the Floridan Aquifer will highlight in Bradford County through efforts by the Suwannee River Water Management District (District) and Rayonier Operating Company, LLC