Friday, July 27, 2007

Purchase Will Help Protect Silver Springs

The State of Florida took ownership of more than 1,700 acres, the second and final phase of a more than 4,400-acre purchase near Silver Springs, a part of the Florida First Magnitude Springs Florida Forever project on July 25. A partnership with The Nature Conservancy and Marion County, the purchase from Avatar Properties, Inc. places the land in conservation and helps protect the water quality of Silver Springs.

The Florida First Magnitude Springs Florida Forever project focuses on land near Florida’s first magnitude springs that discharge more than 100 cubic feet of water per second. Florida’s springs, scattered through northern and central Florida, draw from the Floridan Aquifer, which is the state’s primary source of drinking water.

"The State of Florida has taken a great step toward the protection of one of the largest springs in the country and one of the state’s most renowned natural resources," said Jeff Danter, Florida state director for The Nature Conservancy.

The Florida Springs Initiative, established in 2001, is a program to restore and protect Florida’s more than 700 freshwater springs. Last year the Florida Springs Initiative set aside a meagre $300,000 to protect spring ecosystems, water quality and flow within Florida’s state park system.


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