Damage to coral reef off Palm Beach reported - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Damage to coral reef off Palm Beach reported

picture by JOHN CHRISTOPHER FINE picture by JOHN CHRISTOPHER FINE
  • Fox 29 Daily HeadlinesMore>>

  • Florida State removes statue of founder, slave owner Eppes

    Florida State removes statue of founder, slave owner Eppes

    Friday, July 20 2018 11:17 AM EDT2018-07-20 15:17:52 GMT
    Friday, July 20 2018 11:25 AM EDT2018-07-20 15:25:26 GMT

    Eppes was once commemorated as the founder of FSU, and until early Thursday morning his statue was on the school's Westcott Plaza.

    More >>

    Eppes was once commemorated as the founder of FSU, and until early Thursday morning his statue was on the school's Westcott Plaza.

    More >>
  • Trump talks tougher, now says he warned Putin on meddling

    Trump talks tougher, now says he warned Putin on meddling

    Wednesday, July 18 2018 12:31 AM EDT2018-07-18 04:31:41 GMT
    Thursday, July 19 2018 1:22 AM EDT2018-07-19 05:22:31 GMT
    (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik). President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media as he meets with members of Congress in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Tuesday, July 17, 2018, in Washington. Trump says he meant the opposite when he said in Helsink...(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik). President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media as he meets with members of Congress in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Tuesday, July 17, 2018, in Washington. Trump says he meant the opposite when he said in Helsink...

    Rebuked as never before by his own party, including a stern pushback from usually reserved Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the U.S. president sought to end 27 hours of recrimination by delivering a rare admission of error.

    More >>

    Rebuked as never before by his own party, including a stern pushback from usually reserved Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the U.S. president sought to end 27 hours of recrimination by delivering a rare admission of error.

    More >>
  • Marriott hotels eliminating plastic straws by 2019

    Marriott hotels eliminating plastic straws by 2019

    Wednesday, July 18 2018 12:25 AM EDT2018-07-18 04:25:22 GMT
    Wednesday, July 18 2018 10:47 AM EDT2018-07-18 14:47:09 GMT
    The world's largest hotel company said the move will eliminate approximately 1 billion straws and 250 million stirrers by July 2019. (Source: Pixabay, File)The world's largest hotel company said the move will eliminate approximately 1 billion straws and 250 million stirrers by July 2019. (Source: Pixabay, File)

    The world's largest hotel company said the move will eliminate approximately 1 billion straws and 250 million stirrers by July 2019.

    More >>

    The world's largest hotel company said the move will eliminate approximately 1 billion straws and 250 million stirrers by July 2019.

    More >>

Divers and environmentalists are concerned, saying one of the most popular areas of reef in Palm Beach County is in trouble and has a lot of new damage.

Conservationist and director of Palm Beach County's Reef Rescue Ed Tichenor says he started to worry when a dredge he was tracking went over areas of reef off the shore of Palm Beach Saturday.


"It had crossed over the reef line several times, which concerned us," Tichenor said, "So on Saturday I put out an alert to our volunteer divers to keep an eye out for damage."

The next day, long-time diver John Christopher Fine says he found damage.

"I came across what looked like an underwater tornado had hit," Fine said. "Like a twister, twisted up and killed all of the marine growth for about a four foot span."

Fine provided WFLX with photos.

Another group of divers, he says, were a couple of reefs south of the one he was on, and also found damaged coral and barrel sponges.

Tichenor says he reported the damage on South Breakers, Flower Garden and Ron's Reef to the Department of Environmental Protection.

He says the DEP has promised to investigate. Calls for comment were not returned to WFLX.

Tichenor says usually, in a situation like this, state officials will find and penalize the party responsible for the damage, then do their best to fix it, cementing corals back onto the reef.

"It's important people get out there as quickly as possibly and start repairing the damage," he said.
       
Fine adds the impact could not only be harmful to the ecosystem but the local economy as well.

"These are the most valuable reefs Florida has," Fine said. "Economic impact is tremendous. People come here to dive, they stay in hotels, they're the most pristine reefs we have in the United States and they're being destroyed."

Copyright 2016 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly

1100 Banyan Blvd.
West Palm Beach, FL 33401

FCC Public File
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 Raycom Media. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.