Monday, April 18, 2011
This past weekend was Surfrider Foundation's Florida Chapters Meeting. Environmental attorney Martha Collins from Collins Law Group was able to participate in the conference to give an overview on the new Florida Administration and What Surfrider Can Do to affect policy change. She spoke on issues that are going to continuously affect Florida, like sea level rise, beach fill (or "renourishment") proposals and t-groin/breakwater proposals. Marti is currently working on behalf of Surfrider to work with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection rulemaking process regarding permitting coastal projects. Our comment letter and discussions propose increasing setback requirements for new development and updating mitigation assessment techniques, including UMAM.
Marti Collins was instrumental in garnering the REACH 8 victory for Surfrider Foundation in 2009. Marti represented Surfrider Foundation's Palm Beach County Chapter to set precedent in the arena of beach management processes. After a trial spanning several weeks, Administrative Law Judge Robert E. Meale denied the town of Palm Beach a Joint Coastal Permit for the REACH 8 beach fill project, which would have buried hard-bottom habitat amongst other things. The project was denied based on Surfrider's exposure of the project's potential harm to environmental and recreational resources through the course of the trial.
Watch Marti speak about her work here.