Common Sea Fans (<em>Gorgonia ventilina</em>) are one of several species of sea fans found in southeast Florida. Sea fans are also classified as soft corals or gorgonians.

Common Sea Fans (Gorgonia ventilina) are one of several species of sea fans found in southeast Florida. Sea fans are also classified as soft corals or gorgonians.

Photo: Chantal Collier

Juvenile bluehead wrasses swim along the reef in Palm Beach.

Juvenile bluehead wrasses swim along the reef in Palm Beach.

Photo: Joe Marino

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Southeast Florida Reef News

Raising Awareness for the Coral Reef Protection Act

Katharine Tzadik
Environmental Project Coordinator

Florida’s Coral Reef Protection Act – Learn about this law and how it may affect you
Florida’s Coral Reef Protection Act – Learn about this law and how it may affect you

The Reef Injury Prevention and Response program announces the completion and availability of the Coral Reef Protection Act (CRPA) brochure.

The brochure informs reef users about the CRPA law, how it protects Florida’s coral reefs, and the alternatives available to avoid anchoring on coral reefs and subsequent damage. In 2009, the Florida legislature passed the CRPA to increase protection of Florida’s coral reef resources, by raising awareness of the damages associated with vessel groundings and anchoring on coral reefs. It also authorizes penalties to be paid by the responsible party for the destruction of this valued resource and provides for efficient repair and mitigation of reef injuries. Through this law, in cooperation with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, coastal counties, and other local governments, DEP can investigate reef damages, recover costs, provide restoration and seek compensatory mitigation.

The program is currently distributing the brochure to dive shops and marinas in all 5 counties from Monroe through to Martin. If you are interested in this product, please contact coral@dep.state.fl.us for more information.

Also, it is with sadness that we must say goodbye to John Evered the Reef Injury and Response Program coordinator, who recently left the program for pastures new in Tacoma, Washington. We wish him and his family all the best for the future.

To report a vessel grounding or other coral reef injury in southeast Florida call: (786)385-3054.

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