Cry of the Water reefteam2 at
Thu Aug 23 19:42:49 EDT 2001

Cry of the Water, The Global Coral Reef Alliance, and

Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility 

Press Release 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Dan Clark, Cry of the
Water, 954-753-9737 

Thursday, August 23, 2001 Jessica Vallette Revere,
PEER, 202-265-7337 


Reef Protection Report Released to Document and Save
Northernmost Coral Reef 

Ft. Lauderdale, FL — Cry of the Water, a coral reef
monitoring group in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, has documented
unexpectedly high coral cover and coral reef species
diversity off the Broward County shoreline in an area
that is now threatened by a massive dredge and fill

Prior surveys of the area have missed or
underestimated the size and extent of large stands of
staghorn coral reef and ancient coral colonies that
are found close to shore. Further, early agency
planning documents repeatedly stated that the 3
million cubic yard dredging project using 7 offshore
dredge sites would not significantly impact the reefs
of Ft. Lauderdale.  

The best shallow reefs in Ft. Lauderdale are close to
the burial area. Over 25 acres of shallow essential
fish habitat, hard bottom and coral, will be directly
buried and many more acres will also be indirectly
affected. These reefs contain more then 1/2 of all the
coral species found in the Caribbean and some coral
colonies are between 500 and 1000 years old.  

“Killing or damaging the last remaining good shallow
reefs in east Florida by dredging and filling would by
like dynamiting the last giant redwood stand” said Dr.
Tom Goreau president of The Global Coral Reef
Alliance.. “At a time when reefs are showing the
effects of multiple stresses, any activities that
would cause any further damage could irreversibly
degrade the reef ecosystem and damage local

These findings are documented in a new report by Cry
of the Water and the Global Coral Reef Alliance titled
"Reef Protection in Broward County, Florida" (see Research teams conducted dives
for the past year to map uncharted coral colonies in
and near the impact area of the proposed dredge and
fill project to temporarily widen local beaches. Ft.
Lauderdale's remaining coral reefs can continue to
support major diving and fishing industries, and
protect the coast for years to come if not further
damaged by massive dredging projects.  

“It is time that we take a common sense approach to
marine resource management in Broward County. To
damage or destroy the reefs that currently protect the
shore line will only move us further away from our
goal of sustainable coastal management.” said Dan
Clark, President of Cry of the Water.  

The report, color photographs of the reef, and a short
excerpt from the accompanying video can be viewed at

Cry of the Water  P.O. Box 8143  Coral Springs, FL  33075 reefteam2 at   visit our web site at

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