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New Fort Pierce stormwater treatment facility will help clean water in St. Lucie River

Facility will treat water from C-23, C-24 canal basins
Posted at 8:31 AM, Feb 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-18 08:36:52-05

ST. LUCIE COUNTY, Fla. — It's a major move towards maintaining cleaner waterways on the Treasure Coast.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will host a groundbreaking ceremony for the new stormwater treatment area Friday at 10 a.m.

The 2,568-acre facility is located off of Sneed Road near Okeechobee Road and will treat water coming from the C-23 and C-24 water basins.

Experts said it will help remove harmful nutrients from the water such as sediment, nitrogen, and phosphorus.

"For decades and decades, this water brings in a lot of phosphorus and nitrogen, pollution from old citrus groves, and different operations west of suburbia," said Mike Connor, executive director of the Indian River Keeper. "These two projects combined are going to treat, I believe it's 30 billion gallons of water at any given time."

Connor said the facility is another piece of the puzzle of the Indian River Lagoon South Project, aimed at helping keep Florida waterways clean.

"The water will come into this river much, much cleaner, with much less sediment, and that's the problem," said Connor. "We're fixated on Lake Okeechobee discharges down south, the C-44. But honestly, a lot of the water and a lot of the pollution comes into the St. Lucie comes from western lands of St. Lucie County."