MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Dead fish, little to no oxygen, trash, and sewer leaks. Those are just some of the recent problems in Biscayne Bay. Now, there is the main point person to help keep those issues at bay.
“Tampa Bay has done it. The Chesapeake Bay has done it. There are many examples of recovery,” Irela Bagué said.READ MORE: Doral Police ID Officers Injured In Friday's Shooting
Bagué is Miami-Dade County’s Chief Bay Officer, which is a newly created role. Even though many people don’t see Biscayne Bay, everyone has an impact on it.
“As far as growth, the more people, the more trash, the more flushing, the more use of water, and wastewater,” the bay officer said.
Last month, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the state is investing $10 million to help the waterway.
Miami-Dade matched it for a total of $20 million.
“Groundwater issues, we have surface water issues, we have stormwater issues, and wastewater issues,” she said.READ MORE: Six People Hospitalized Following Boat Explosion In Dania Beach
The short-term plan is to focus on the septic tanks along the bay. They want them out and everyone on a sewer system. But that’s not all.
“We are hyper-focused on septic to sewer conversion and stormwater management. That’s because, Ty, everything we do on land ends up in the bay,” Bagué said.
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The goal is to save this bay. There have even been times when nearby beaches had to close because of bacteria.
“If you live on a waterway or a canal, think about what ends up on the canal will eventually in up in the bay,” she said.
Even though officials are still working to correct decades-old issues, the county is asking for your help right now. Like avoiding the use of fertilizer, especially in the summer.MORE NEWS: Florida Is Ditching Palm Trees To Fight Climate Crisis
“Reduce your plastic consumption. It’s as simple as that. Pick up your pet waste. Be conscious of what you’re flushing,” Bagué said.