Polk’s Water Future Still Unclear, Sierra Told

The only thing certain about the future of water consumption in Polk County is that doing

it the way we’ve done it for decades will be unsustainable, representatives of the


Regional Water Cooperative told Ancient Islands Sierra Thursday.

That means spending millions of dollars to study whether it’s really practical to pump

and treat brackish water from the lower reaches of the Floridan aquifer or whether

collecting stormwater at key points along the Peace Creek Canal would provide enough aquifer recharge to justify pumping additional water from the freshwater section of the aquifer.

County Commissioner George Lindsey III, the cooperative’s current chairman, gave a presentation along with Assistant County Manager Ryan Taylor and consultant Mary Thomas.

The major points of Thursday’s presentation were:

–The regional approach to water planning by local governments improves chances of getting adequate financial help to implement expensive projects.

–A major challenge is to hold the coalition board made up of elected officials together long term when elections change the makeup of some local governing bodies.

–Developers have been slow to adopt water-conservation programs, despite offers of subsidies to implement better practices in new subdivision.

–The price customers should expect to pay triple what they pay now for potable water.

–Conservation remains a priority because it costs the less to implement.

–It’s still unknown how practical some of the proposals are in either delivering adequate supplies and in being able to be implemented affordably.

Any final proposal will get an outside professional review.































Even Balloon Releases Have A Lobbying Group

Balloon releases litter the landscape and sometimes endanger marine wildlife, but stopping these releases can be challenging.

One reason is a group called the Balloon Council, according to Treehugger.

The article also informs us there is a way to fight back.

An organization called Balloons Blow offers fact sheets on the environmental damage balloons cause.

This a really relevant topic as graduations are occurring all over Florida and other events such as weddings are common at this time of year. Both sometimes include balloon releases.

If you hear one is planned talk to organizers and ask them to celebrate in a more sensitive manner.


Solar Advancing In Polk County

Solar farms keep coming to southwest Polk County.

The Polk County Planning Commission voted unanimously this week to approve a solar farm in Chicora, The Ledger reports.

Meanwhile, an additional solar farm has been proposed for a 358-acre site owned by KMT Farm and Timber Company between U.S. 98 and
E.F. Griffin Road. It is scheduled to come to the Bartow Planning and Zoning Commission May 14. If city officials approve the project, it will be operated by Tampa Electric.

This is the latest addition of solar power to Bartow.

In March city officials announced an agreement with NovaSol Energy for the addition of solar power to the city’s power grid.

Also in March, city officials approved a TECO solar farm near the Peace Creek north of State Road 60.