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Our Issues

Friends of the Wekiva River work to protect our treasured waterway by gathering data, analyzing problems that affect the river and proposing solutions, writing letters and documents to help people understand river issues, attending meetings, writing letters and working with decision makers, among other things. Please email us at FriendsWekivaRiver@gmail.com if you’d like to help us. These are some of the issues we address:

Water Quality: We work with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and local governments on guidelines for improving water quality in springs and rivers in the Wekiva basin.

Water Quantity: We work with the St. Johns River Water Management District on guidelines for maintaining adequate flows in springs and rivers in the Wekiva basin.

Environmental Impacts from Land Use Changes from Inappropriate Development: We are consistently involved with issues related to development projects in areas designated for protection in the Wekiva basin.

Data Collection: We participate in events such as annual Christmas Bird Counts, BioBlitz events and other efforts to capture data about biological diversity in the basin and monitor water quality and quantity.

Land Acquisition in the Wekiva to Ocala Greenway: We have obtained a grant for $600,000 to acquire parcels of scrub habitat in the corridor and need help shoring up the acquisition (or conservation easements) on 20,000+ acres of land left to acquire.

The Wekiva River needs its water -- managers to set minimum flow and level

Central Florida's newly updated water supply plan leaves springs under threat

We must keep Wekiva Parkway Protection Act as is, no new interchange. Oct/Nov 2017

This act is important to protecting our lands, wildlife corridors, water quality and recharge areas. We are asking county commissioners in Lake and Orange to keep the act intact and not reopen it. 

Open File

Seminole County fertilizer ordinance could help protect Wekiva waters. February 2017

[Download File]

Conservation land near Gemini Springs should not be developed.  June 2016

In a letter to state water regulators, Friends of the Wekiva River express alarm over the City of DeBary's proposal to obtain and develop 102 acres of conservation land neat Gemini Springs Park in Volusia County. [Download File]

Seminole County can take leadership role in reducing Wekiva pollution.  May 2015

Friends of the Wekiva River urge Seminole County to strengthen fertilizer ordinance to help improve the Wekiva's water quality. [Download File]

Friends of Wekiva River urge City of DeBary to abandon development plans for land near Gemini Springs. May 2015

We find the City of DeBary’s plans to turn a portion of this land into a stormwater pond for the benefit of adjacent landowners and, worse, plans to allow intense development on the remainder to be highly objectionable. This scheme could not be further from the original conservation intent. [Download File]

Debary's mayor does right for the environment on Gemini Springs parcel  June 2016

Friends of the Wekiva River applauds DeBary's Mayor Clint Johnson for his opposition to a proposal to obtain and develop 102 acres of conservation land near Gemini Springs Park. [Download File]

Friends of Wekiva River urge Orange County Commissioner Bryan Nelson to keep working on Wekiva solutions   April 2016

We pledge our support to continue to work with Commissioner Nelson on improving water quality in the waters of the basin. We have seen various ambitious initiatives falter because of the lack of support or of a lack of funding. It is important that Commissioner Nelson continue to work with us to identify appropriate projects that will improve water quality in the springs and rivers of the basin. [Download File]

Orange County makes terrible mistake in rejecting money to switch septic tanks to sewer service  December 2015

Florida environmental regulators have determined that reducing nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) loadings in the Wekiva Basin will be necessary to restore the water quality of Wekiwa Springs, Rock Springs and the Wekiva River because the N and P are contributing to the growth of excessive algae and declining water quality. [Download File]

Orange County Commissioner Bryan Nelson making a "big mistake" affecting Wekiva  December 2015

To exclude septic tanks, especially those that discharge wastewater directly into Wekiwa Springs, is a big mistake.  And to turn down grants that would cover 75% of the cost of installing the sewers is an even bigger mistake. [Download File]

Alternative uses for state park lands can jeopardize state jewels  July 2015

The activities proposed include commercial cattle ranching, logging, hunting, and the installation of cell phone towers for the purposes of financial sustainability of the parks. No state park system in the nation is financially self-sustaining. We believe the beauty, water quality, biodiversity, and historic significance of our parks will be jeopardized by attempts to make our parks financially self-sustaining. [Download File]

In opposition to large aquifer withdrawal  near Silver Springs   July 2015

Friends of Wekiva River  requests that state water regulators deny the Sleepy Creek Ranch/Adena Springs permit to withdraw 1.46 million gallons a day from the Floridian aquifer. [Download File]