Florida lawmakers have been discussing growing environmental issues with the persisting toxic algae crisis that the sunshine state’s coasts are facing. With Governor DeSantis’ election, an even bigger emphasis was placed on environmental issues.
This week, Florida Rep. Michael Waltz joined fellow Congressman Al Lawson (D-FL) and John Rutherford (R-FL) in partnering with the bipartisan American Flood Coalition.
Speaking on the environmental issues that Florida is facing, Waltz explained that “Floridians know the sea is rising – our beaches are smaller and eroding, flooding is more frequent and threats to our fresh water are increasing.” The freshman Congressman added that “it’s a threat to our economy, our national security, and our environment.” In turn, he noted that in joining the American Flood Coalition, he hopes to inspire “more colleagues to put politics aside and work on realistic, bipartisan solutions to protect and strengthen our communities.”
With the inclusion of said lawmakers, the American Flood Coalition now has 12 members from both sides of the Congressional aisle.
Democrat Rep. Al Lawson also commented on the effort to combat environmental threats that the sunshine state faces, detailing that “Jacksonville was severely affected by the record flooding, and many hardworking residents were left with injuries, flooded homes and nowhere to turn for refuge.” He explained that he quickly “worked to secure disaster relief funding to assist with the recovery efforts.” And, he asserted that “although we’ve made progress, there is still much work to be done to address the rising sea levels.”
In response to the new members, Melissa Roberts, the Executive Director of the American Flood Coalition, praised the bipartisan effort. She noted that “it’s rare and encouraging to see our Congressional leaders take proactive action to address the challenges of flooding and sea level rise in a regional and bipartisan manner.” Roberts further praised the effort, noting that the Coalition is “grateful for the leadership of Congressman Rutherford, Lawson, and Waltz.” In addition, the Coalition looks “forward to advancing practical national solutions that support flood-affected communities and protect the nation’s residents, economy, and military installations.”