Information on Irma’s river impact coming in, but full picture still lacking

A month after Hurricane Irma unloaded torrents of water throughout Florida, the consequences of rain and tides that triggered report-setting floods have remained onerous to outline.

Water-high quality measurements compiled because the storm left Florida Sept.eleven are nonetheless being assembled into deep stacks of statistics that would ultimately present what the storm did to the rivers and creeks it rinsed with runoff from farm fields, septic tanks and unsafe waste websites across the state.

However outcomes from these checks might find yourself lacking the consequences of spills and leaks that compound each other, stated St. Johns Riverkeeper Lisa Rinaman.

“Not solely is there a niche in time, there’s additionally a niche in info,” stated Rinaman, who stated she’s scheduled to speak subsequent week with environmental officers about classes from the storm’s aftermath.

Whereas a collection of businesses have sampled water testing stations individually, she stated one company ought to monitor the mixed results.“That’s extremely essential once you’re downstream,” Rinaman unhappy.

Jacksonville is the final group on the 310-mile St. Johns earlier than the river empties into the ocean.

A web-based database of check outcomes that Florida’s Division of Environmental Safety compiles from throughout the state had no outcomes since Sept. eleven from rivers or creeks in Duval, Baker, Clay, Nassau or St. Johns counties, the place hundreds of houses and companies flooded.

The St. Johns River Water Administration District examined forty three websites within the river’s decrease basin, roughly from the ocean to Lake George in Putnam County. However maybe half of these readings weren’t obtainable Wednesday by way of a knowledge portal on the company’s web site as a result of the outcomes have been very current and nonetheless being finalized.

The checks measure issues like salinity and pH, which different some and may be essential to river life, however they weren’t designed to trace ranges of micro organism, pesticides, gasoline residue and different pollution that would flip up in floodwaters, stated Teresa Monson, an company spokeswoman.

By late final week, Jacksonville’s metropolis inspectors had analyses of a few dozen sampling websites collected in late September for purely routine testing. The outcomes included readings like ranges of algae-feeding nitrogen within the water, however didn’t handle different questions, like ranges of micro organism that would pose well being hazards.

There’s been extra water round prior to now month than anybody might check.

The water administration…

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