The 3rd Annual Run for the Reef 5K and Kid’s 1 Mile Fun Run is fast approaching. We are seeking door prizes to be drawn for at the Awards Ceremony and Volunteers to help on Race Day (Saturday Morning October 15th at the Navarre Beach Pier).
Volunteers or Door Prize donators can register their interest right here on our website or just email firstname.lastname@example.org
Of course participants are always welcome – and remember, you don’t have to be a runner to participate. You don’t even have to break a sweat. Just register for the run (here or at active.com, come out and get your awesome Race Shirt and enjoy the awards ceremony on the Navarre Pier Deck with complimentary food and beverage.
The Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) received a positive response from NOAA on the required section 7 consult for ALL of our Gulf and Sound Side reef area permits. This means National Marine Fisheries Service of NOAA agrees with the biological assessment written by Keith Johnson of Wetland Sciences (our environmental consultant). The action indicates we have cleared the final large hurdle with the only step left being the creation by the ACOE of the permit conditions. The conditions basically dictate what we can and can not do within the permit area such as materials allowed, setback distances, etc. As of August 11th There is currently only one permit ahead of us in that process. The Marine Sanctuary permit conditions will be drafted next. After the conditions are written and approved by the ACOE, they will be issued to Santa Rosa County. The final approval is expected without delay once the conditions are written. These final steps are expected to be complete with permits in hand within six weeks (September).
The Marine Sanctuary Committee is working with Santa Rosa County on finalizing the implementation plan so that process may begin as soon as permits are in hand.
A new University of Florida study finds artificial reefs are economic boon and enjoy widespread public support. The study of artificial reef use in six southwest Florida counties shows the structures lure a lot more than fish.
The reefs, which provide habitat for popular sport fish and other marine life, pulled more than $253 million into the region during one year, the study found. Though it costs nothing more than a saltwater fishing license to use the submerged structures as a fishing spot, anglers spend money on food, lodging, fuel, tackle and other necessities.
The UF and Florida Sea Grant study looked at money generated by artificial reefs in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and Lee counties in 2009. Researchers found that $136 million came from residents, while $117 million was spent by visitors.
Download the study here.