FDEP Rejects Recommendation of the Big Cypress Advisory Committee. As we had anticipated, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection has notified Judge Alexander and the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings that it intends to ignore the recommendations of the Big Cypress Swamp Advisory Committee to deny the Golden Gate oil well permit. Details here.
Welcome to Preserve Our Paradise.org! Preserve Our Paradise, Inc. was formed when we learned that the Dan A. Hughes Company of Beeville, Texas had applied to drill a well that presents maximal threats to public safety and our natural environment. It is positioned to drill under the City of Naples main water wellfield, the future Collier County water wellfield area, the Florida Panther National Wildlife Preserve, and the residential suburb of Golden Gate Estates.
The Challenge. The Golden Gate well is the front line of a black tide of “unconventional fossil fuel recovery” that threatens to overrun all of South Florida and the Florida Panhandle. The Dan A. Hughes Company alone has leased 115,000 environmentally sensitive acres of Southwest Florida for exploration. There are only small amounts of fossil fuel in Florida, and with many forms of green energy available, there is simply no need to risk despoiling Florida in this way. As former Exxon executive Edward Glab has said, “The juice isn’t worth the squeeze”.
To date, we’ve fought this well to a standstill, but challenges remain. Headlines below.
Please donate, pledge, or volunteer! As we feared, the Florida Department of Environmental Protecdtion has approved this well, and we have now begun to fight this reckless oil rush in the courts. Justice will not come cheap. We need to raise $37,200 to establish our case and meet our goal for this year.
How to use this website. On this site, there are large amounts of information under the Issues tab at the top of each page. (Mobile users go to Menu.) The Issues–>Golden Gate Well subfolder contains the best introductory narrative. “Fracking Florida” addresses more diffuse statewide issues and more detailed legal issues, well-by-well.
April 3 at 2 pm. Gasland II with online intro by Josh Fox, Q&A following with Dr. Tony Ingraffea, Naples and Cornell University. Limited seating (About 20 of 94 seats remain.) Reserve seats now. Email firstname.lastname@example.org and state how many will be in your party.
Breaking News: March 31. The Big Cypress Swamp Advisory Committee just voted 3-1 to deny the permit for the Golden Gate Exploratory oil well!! The Florida Department of Environmental Protection does not have to follow the advice of of the Committee, as our lawsuit works its way through the courts, it will be hard for Florida judges to reject this finding of the Governor’s own appointed committee.
Preserve Our Paradise has released its comment to the EPA in opposition to the proposed Golden Gate Injection well. Read our full comment here (pdf).
March 11. EPA Public Field Hearing on the Golden Gate injection well — Worse than Fracking (Details). A Marcellus Shale gas well may be fracked 3 times in its lifetime generating 15 million gallons of toxic wastewater. Over its lifetime, the Golden Gate well would generate 600 million gallons of equally toxic wastewater. Learn the threats to nature and neighborhoods (EPA Injection in top banner), and join us!
February 25-28. Hearing before the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings (Concluded?) (Details). The hearing has been concluded (sort of–see below). Administrative courts rule overwhelmingly in favor of the administration, and on appeal, the parties are not allowed to introduce new evidence. So we knew going in that it was crucial that we build our strongest possible case for a likely appeal. Ralf Brookes, our attorney, prepared our case and conducted it extremely well. Our experts Paul Rubin, Ron Bishop, and Gabe Tischler were unimpeachable. If the administrative judge does not rule in our favor, we are ready to mount a strong appeal.
Concluded?? Over our objection, the administrative judge allowed the FDEP an extra month to convene the Big Cypress Swamp Advisory Committee to advise the FDEP on the oil well permit (even though the FDEP plainly indicated they would ignore the Committee’s advice). In any event, please write the Big Cypress Swamp Advisory Committee, and ask them to stop oil exploration and production in South Florida!
1 December 2013
EPA Hearing tentatively scheduled for February 27. We have been told that the EPA (Region 4, Atlanta) has tentatively scheduled a hearing on the Golden Gate poison water disposal well for February 27 at the Golden Gate Civic Assn. Watch this space for details!
Friday, October 11, 2013, 2:00 PM
Preserve Our Paradise, Inc. Goes to Court to Stop Naples Oil Well !!
Naples, Florida — Preserve Our Paradise, Inc. announced Friday that it has filed for a formal administrative hearing as the first step in a court battle against irresponsible oil drilling in South Florida. Friday was the deadline for filing this request, following the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Final Order approving an oil well and wastewater injection well next to the Naples suburb of Golden Gate Rural Estates. (Read more…)
Fracking in the Florida Panhandle?
Two applications for drilling permits in the Florida Panhandle have been filed with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.. As we place our South Florida hopes in the hands of our attorneys and experts, we will turn increasing attention on these pages to events unfolding in the Panhandle. (Read more …)
Is Lee County Next?
About a year ago, Collier Resources was reported to have leased some 115,000 acres to the Dan A. Hughes company for oil exploration in Collier County. But we have learned that 11 square miles of those leases were actually in Lee County. Meanwhile, the FDEP is processing applications by other companies for other drilling sites in Hendry County. (Read more …)