Gainesville, Fla. (PRWEB) April 23, 2014
Forty-four years ago, the first Earth Day was observed on April 22, 1970. This day is credited as the beginning of the modern environmental movement. The passage of the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act and other environmental laws soon followed. According to the Earth Day Network, more than one billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world.
Florida farmers and ranchers celebrated Earth Day for generations before the day was officially observed. Farm families have always depended upon the good health of the land and water around them for their livelihoods. They care for our state’s land and water every day.
According to field evaluations by Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services personnel, conservation measures employed by farm families save almost 11 billion gallons of fresh water each year. Farm families have enrolled more than 9 million acres of agricultural land under the state’s Best Management Practices programs.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection has determined that citrus growers in south-central Florida reduced nitrogen levels in groundwater by nearly 33 percent in three years with their advanced management efforts.
The South Florida Water Management District has reported that farmers in the Everglades Agricultural Area slashed phosphorous levels by 71 percent in water flowing from their properties during the 2012 reporting year.
Farmers and ranchers also maintain green space and wildlife habitat. They control invasive, non-native species introduced through our seaports and air terminals.
“On this year’s Earth Day and every day, I urge all Floridians to remember the many contributions our farmers and ranchers provide for us,” Florida Farm Bureau President John Hoblick stated. “They are the earth’s first stewards and the keys to our future sustainability as a society.”
Florida Farm Bureau honors farmers and ranchers across Florida who practice environmental stewardship and demonstrate the true meaning of Earth Day each day of the year. Through the County Alliance for Responsible Environmental Stewardship (CARES) program, Farm Bureau recognizes more than 600 farmers who are devoted to protecting Florida’s natural resources. For more information on CARES, visit http://www.thisfarmcares.org/.
Florida Farm Bureau is the Sunshine State's largest general agricultural organization with more than 147,000 member-families statewide. Membership provides a multitude of benefits. You don't have to be a farmer to be a member of Florida Farm Bureau.
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