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Protesters fight to stop oil drilling plans in the Everglades

Posted at 10:48 AM, Feb 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-20 10:48:15-05

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. -- There soon could be an oil well in the Florida Everglades.

Two years ago, the Department of Environmental Protection Agency said "no way" to drilling in the Everglades.

But because of the passing of Amendment 6, that ruling has been overturned.

Many know Amendment 6 expanded victim rights, but it also allowed courts to change previously settled government decisions, which includes the ban on drilling in the Everglades.

Environmentalists say the aquifer sits below the surface in the Everglades and is the largest source of drinking water for south Floridians.

Broward County commissioner Beam Furr is an opponent to drilling. He's part of a group trying to stop it before it starts. "That's a pretty big compromise; one that I'm not willing to take and I don't think I know anybody that's willing to make that compromise."

Kat Brit is a 3rd-generation Floridian. She's seen the Everglades thrive and now struggle. "i just don't think that the Everglades can take any more hits."

WSVN reached out to the company who wants to drill. They responded by saying "we are both gratified and humbled that the First District ruling came out as it did. We have assembled our team of experts, and are consulting with family, advisors, and counsel regarding next steps."

Having lost in the courtroom, environmentalists are now hoping Florida's new governor steps in. "He wants to be known as somebody who protects the environment, protects the Everglades. We want him then to support us in this fight," says geologist Diana Umpierre.