The Everglades Needs More Freshwater

freshwaterIt isn’t easy being the Everglades right now. The beautiful ecosystem has been struggling as it combats human development, pollution, invasive species, and climate change. To add more fuel to the fire, the Everglades need more freshwater. Why?  Due to rising sea levels, the Everglades has been filled with higher salinity in its waters, and more saltwater in the area could make things worse.

When the salinity is high in the water and water levels are low, the Everglades releases up to three times the amount of carbon dioxide than it should, according to scientists at FIU. The peat soil in the Everglades traps carbon dioxide when the water is high. Saltwater can cause the peat soil to break down, which is when the carbon dioxide gets released.

According to FIU, the amount of carbon dioxide being released from the Everglades when saltwater hits the peat soil is comparable to 35,000 cars emitting carbon dioxide in one year.

The increased salinity in the Everglades water has been killing plant roots in fresh water and brackish water marshes. In fact, 65 percent of plant roots in the fresh water marshes and 72 percent of the roots in brackish waters have died because of the increase in saltwater, which is due to the seal level rising.

FIU is able to study the effects of saltwater in the Everglades thanks to a Florida Sea Grant and the Florida Coastal Everglades Long Term Ecological Research (FCE-LTER) program.

Explore the Everglades in an Airboat

Thanks to the work of researchers and scientists, the Everglades is being monitored, watched, and renovated to return to a state in which is can thrive. The Everglades is a beautiful place, we have been air-boating through its waters for decades and we’re hoping to for many years more!

At Captain Mitch’s Private Airboat Tours, we respect the Everglades with everything we do.

Come down and check out the beautiful Everglades on an airboat ride. To book an airboat tour, call Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours at 800-368-0065 or click our Private Everglades Airboat Tours page.