An Earth Day announcement about Everglades restoration from Governor Ron DeSantis.
"Today the South Florida Water Management District unanimously approved the Project Partnership Agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers so that federal construction can finally begin on the critical EAA Reservoir."
The reservoir will be able to store 240,000 acre feet of water from Lake Okeechobee, which will be cleaned in a wetland that the state is building, before being sent south to the Everglades.
The project is 12 months ahead of schedule.
"We're actually putting the pedal to the medal, even in this uncertain budget time. But I think part of the reason why we're able to do this (is) because the state's healthy. We have a healthy economy."
The governor says there were concerns that the budget would be too tight, due to the pandemic.
"We had the budget right before COVID really and they were like 'There's no way this is going to make it,' but we were able to keep our committment to our water resources."
DeSantis says he's following up on a promise made when he was first elected.
"Prioritizing Florida's vital water resources has been a major part of my administration."
Also at the event in Wellington was former Florida Senate President Joe Negron:
“Early on Governor DeSantis promised the citizens of Florida that he would build this Reservoir. He kept his word and never wavered. That is why we are here this morning — victorious.”
The project is aimed at putting a permanent end to harmful discharges from Lake Okeechobee into the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Rivers.
Photo: Getty Images