Florida Crystals Welcomes Federal Dollars for Construction of Everglades Restoration Projects

May 01, 2009, 12:45 ET from Florida Crystals Corporation

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., May 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Florida Crystals Corporation welcomes the much-needed $96 million from the Federal Government announced this week that will be used for immediate construction of Everglades restoration projects.

"We are encouraged to see the Federal Government living up to its commitment to Everglades restoration," said Gaston Cantens, Vice President of Florida Crystals. "And, more importantly, with so many restoration projects on hold, we are optimistic the money will go to the construction and implementation of planned projects that will not only restore the Everglades but create critical jobs in these tough economic times."

Instead of simply buying more land, the federal contribution will pay for the construction of two CERP projects -- a reservoir next to the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge and for restoration of Picayune Strand, an 85-square-mile area that was over-drained in the early 1960s as part of a failed housing development.

Florida Crystals is encouraged to see some restoration projects may get back on track. The company is hopeful future dollars will be put toward projects that will address the source of pollution in the watersheds north of Lake Okeechobee, as present phosphorus loading to the lake is nearly five times higher than the limit that must be met by 2015.

In order to solve Florida's water issues and achieve effective restoration, plans must address the entire water system - Lake Okeechobee, the estuaries and the Everglades.

Florida Crystals is the leading domestic sugar producer and North America's first fully integrated cane sugar company, guiding its sugar from the field to the table. Florida Crystals(R) Organic and Natural sugar products are the first sugar products certified CarbonFree(R) (carbon neutral) by Carbonfund.org. Florida Crystals' renewable energy facility is the largest of its kind in North America and provides clean energy for its sugar operations and tens of thousands of homes, reducing America's dependence on fossil fuels by one million barrels of oil each year and displacing hundreds of thousands of tons of CO2 annually.

    Gaston Cantens

SOURCE Florida Crystals Corporation