11/12/2015 (PRESS RELEASE JET) — As the clock keeps ticking away, so does the hope of Surfside citizens to have a clean beach as the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) sits idly by.
It is now one and a half years since the State of Florida was notified by concerned residents and given irrefutable proof of hazardous construction debris being dumped on Surfside beach, a residential community nestled between Bal Harbor and Miami Beach, FL.
Local news stations reported on the toxic and hazardous materials 18 months ago but the FDEP has yet to enforce any of the laws, issue fines or clean up. The town and its leaders had kept quiet in the hopes that the issue would resolve itself and that the angry residents would give up their fight. During that time, the town benefitted from the developer that dumped over 20,000 cubic yards of excavated fill from a demolition site of an 80-year-old building, onto the entire Surfside public beach. This excavated fill included insulation, nails, concrete and elevated levels of chemicals. On July 2, 2014, the FDEP issued the developer a Compliance Assistance Offer which states “the placed excavated fill material shall not contain construction debris, metal, toxic material … In addition, … Sediment QA/QC Plan for this permit states that all non-compliant fill shall be removed.”
The only action taken by FDEP, was the issuance of a mitigation plan, which resulted in unsuccessful sifting. The sifting and activity of Miami Dade County tractors lead to a mixing of fill and debris with the clean sand, spreading it throughout the beach and water, even during the 2014 turtle nesting season. Due to the negligence of FDEP, the residents and visitors of Surfside risk stepping on rusted nails and being exposed to toxic materials. The Miami Herald reported on January 19, 2015 how the excavated fill was “spread out all over the Surfside public beach”.
On July 3rd 2015 NBC6 News investigators showed videos of rusty nails and metal shards being pulled from the sand by a simple magnet. On April 7, 2015 the Miami Herald published No action yet: A year later Surfside still discussing sand removal from construction site. It asserts that “The state’s law also says the sand must be compatible with the existing sand, but residents believed the sand was completely different, even calling it dirt. They voiced their concerns about the toxicity of the sand during various town hall meetings and claim that they find debris”.
It is not sufficient that the FDEP acknowledges the presence of toxic materials or construction debris, they must to be held accountable and restore Surfside’s pristine beach.
P.U.S.H., a grass roots organization, is striving to ensure the clean-up of Surfside beach and waters. We need to amend the FDEP rule to prevent what has happened in Surfside and Miami Beach from happening on any other Florida beach. P.U.S.H. has serious issues with the latest consent order and is enlisting the support of the public to raise awareness. Show your support by liking P.U.S.H on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Distributed by Press Release Jet
Company Name: Betancourt PR
Contact Person: Nick Betancourt
Phone: (786) 287-1725
Country: United States