AWE advocates to protect and restore wetlands.

Wetlands clean and supply our drinking water, lessen wildfire risk, provide habitat for myriad species and support a $ 65 million tourism economy.

Southwest Florida has lost 70% of its Historic Shallow Wetlands

Sources: National Audubon Society and South Florida Water Management District

Acres shallow wetlands destroyed in Big Cypress watershed since 2004 Source: NOAA

Cost to fight wildfires in Big Cypress in 2017 Source: Big Cypress National Preserve

Acres burned in Golden Gate Estates area Spring 2017 Source: multiple media accounts

Probable Culprits:

  • Regional over-drainage, over-pumping, and clearing/filling wetlands.

Copyright © C. Lee

  • Wood Storks are disappearing from the Everglades, and other wading birds struggle. Loss of shallow wetlands is causing their steep decline.

Source: City of Naples

  • Federally-threatened Wood Storks depend upon healthy, functioning shallow wetlands for survival and successful offspring

Courtesy Charlotte Harbor National Estuarine Preserve and Church  Environment Group

AWE is on the Frontlines of Wetlands Protection:

  • Restored and preserved wetland systems in developments negotiated by AWE.
  • Improved federal protection standards for wood stork foraging habitat (with Audubon Florida).
  • Improved federal mitigation banking policies for shallow wetland protection (with Audubon Florida).
  • Improved statewide wetland regulations.
  • Recently proposed improved rules for state mitigation regulations.
  • Supports Collier County flowway restoration in Picayune Strand State Forest.
  • Supports Picayune Strand Restoration Project – more than 70,000 acres of wetlands and habitat restoration.
  • Successfully applied for new 2800-acre Florida Forever project, CREW Headwaters, in 2016.