Gulf Coast

Gulf Specimen Marine Lab via facebook

Hurricane Irma very nearly put a beloved Panhandle landmark out of business. But instead of closing their doors after 54 years, Panacea’s Gulf Specimen Marine Lab is up and running.

Kate Payne via WFSU

The private board in charge of handing out funds from the BP oil spill is developing its application process. But sparsely populated Gulf Coast counties are worried they could lose out on some of the settlement money.

Kate Payne via WFSU

Wakulla County’s commercial fishermen say they want to cooperate with local oyster farmers, within limits. The announcement comes when tensions are escalating between the groups, after vandals tampered with aquaculture equipment in the area.

Peter via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/augustusoz/

Vandals tampered with oyster aquaculture equipment in Wakulla County this weekend, which investigators say is a felony offense. WFSU spoke with one of the farmers, who says the incident is derailing this year’s crop.

JB Mellquist via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/jbmellquist/6823148831/

County and state officials are investigating reports of vandalism at North Florida oyster farms. According to the Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office, navigational markers were tampered with at oyster aquaculture operations in Skipper Bay. 

BP's Deepwater Horizon oil rig on fire in 2010.
US Coast Guard

Almost seven years after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Florida lawmakers are finalizing a settlement plan. There’s still some distance between the house and senate versions, but top lawmakers say a compromise is on the way.

An Ceann Corr via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/acreisner/

New research shows pollution in the Gulf of Mexico is coming from a source close to home: our closets. A team of scientists say plastic microfibers in polyester, nylon and acrylics are washing out of household fabrics and into the ocean.

Kevin Cavanaugh via Smithsonian Institute / http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/fewer-freezes-let-floridas-mangroves-move-north-180948075/

Mangroves are quintessentially tropical and take root along the coast of the Everglades and the Keys where they are home to colorful fish and crabs. But these plants are not marooned in South Florida anymore. WFSU went searching for mangroves along the state’s Gulf Coast.

UF/IFAS / http://www.wec.ufl.edu/oysterproject/

A decade of work is paying off for a team of coastal conservationists in Florida. A team of researchers won an $8.3 million grant to restore shrinking oyster reefs.

Tulane University Public Relations / https://www.flickr.com/photos/tulanesally/

The Deepwater Horizon oil spill devastated the Gulf Coast, and cost BP a total of $61.2 billion. Now a government council is seeking public input on how some of that money should be spent.

Florida FWC
https://www.flickr.com/photos/myfwc/

The Gulf Coast is home to the most endangered sea turtle in the world: the Kemp’s Ridley. The fate of the turtles depends on the region’s coastal wetlands, where tropical storms, and oils spills have taken their toll. Here's a look into the uncertain future of the delicate ecosystem.

WFSU Media's twitter

Tallahassee City Commissioners say they support an ongoing effort to return Amtrak to the area. They recently unanimously voted yes on a resolution to restore the passenger rail service. The route would be between New Orleans and Orlando.

FWC's Flickr

Turtle nesting season is underway, and Florida wildlife officials are urging the public to be cautious of the sea creatures during this crucial time.

Florida Association of Counties

Escambia County is right in the not-so-sweet spot of Florida counties hardest hit by 2010’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The spill will cost tens of billions of dollars in cleanup charges, fines and settlements, and many say it is still blighting the environment. The damage still lingers, long after BP declared its work done. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is still finding oil remnants in places like Pensacola’s Fort Pickens Beach.

Fla. Could Get Billions if RESTORE Act Passes

Jun 11, 2012
Gulf Coast Restoration Summit Attendees
Jessica Palombo / WFSU-FM

Congress could soon pass legislation dividing fines from the 2010 BP oil spill among the five affected Gulf Coast states. Lawmakers, business owners and scientists discussed what to do with the billions of dollars Florida could stand to receive under the RESTORE Act at the Gulf Coast Restoration Summit in Destin on June 11.

More than two years after the Deep Horizon oil rig disaster, relief money for Florida and other Gulf Coast states is on the table in Congress. The Senate passed the RESTORE Act earlier this year.