Citrus greening brings Sen. Bill Nelson to Ft. Pierce

FORT PIERCE, Fla. - Sen. Bill Nelson is in Ft. Pierce on Friday to visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture research facility and meet with scientists and researchers about finding a cure for citrus greening.

Nelson said he feels scientists at the facility may be on the cusp of finding a cure, and a $125 million infusion in new federal funds may soon lead to one.  

A provision included in the farm bill that Congress passed this week gives scientists $25 million a year for the next five years to fund research into combating and eradicating the citrus disease.

Citrus greening has been blamed for killing crops not only in Florida, but also California, Louisiana, Texas, Georgia and South Carolina.

According to a University of Florida study done last year, citrus greening already has cost the state's economy $4.5 billion and 8,000 jobs between 2006 and 2012. 

Nelson will also speak at 3:15 p.m. at the Indian River Lagoon Symposium at the Florida Atlantic University Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute located at 5600 U.S. 1 North in Ft. Pierce.

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