3
Implementation Progress

This committee is charged with the task of discussing significant accomplishments of the restoration and assessing “the progress toward achieving the natural system restoration goals of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP)” (see Chapter 1). The last National Research Council (NRC) review of restoration progress (NRC, 2008) noted that in the first eight years after the Water Resources Development Act of 2000 (WRDA 2000) was authorized, the CERP had been bogged down in budgeting, planning, and procedural matters and was making only scant progress toward achieving restoration goals. Although some project phases were under way, most of the CERP accomplishments were programmatic (e.g., land acquisition, project implementation reports [PIRs]) and served to lay the foundation for later project construction (NRC, 2008).

In this chapter, the committee provides an update to the NRC’s previous assessments of CERP and related non-CERP project planning and implementation progress (NRC, 2007, 2008) as well as an analysis of any natural system benefits resulting from this progress to date. Also included are discussions of programmatic issues related to CERP progress, such as funding and project sequencing.

CERP RESTORATION IMPLEMENTATION

Progress restoring the South Florida ecosystem will come about only through implementation of restoration projects. The analysis of implementation progress provided in this section focuses on CERP projects, although many of these projects build upon restoration benefits provided by non-CERP projects, which are discussed in the next section. Additional detail on implementation progress can be found in Chapter 7 of the South Florida Environmental Report (Williams et al., 2010).

The Yellow Book (USACE and SFWMD, 1999) outlined a conceptual plan for 68 projects and identified a schedule for implementation. The originally ambitious timetable gave way to delays in project planning and lower-than-expected



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3 Implementation Progress This committee is charged with the task of discussing significant accomplish- ments of the restoration and assessing “the progress toward achieving the natu- ral system restoration goals of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP)” (see Chapter 1). The last National Research Council (NRC) review of restoration progress (NRC, 2008) noted that in the first eight years after the Water Resources Development Act of 2000 (WRDA 2000) was authorized, the CERP had been bogged down in budgeting, planning, and procedural matters and was making only scant progress toward achieving restoration goals. Although some project phases were under way, most of the CERP accomplishments were programmatic (e.g., land acquisition, project implementation reports [PIRs]) and served to lay the foundation for later project construction (NRC, 2008). In this chapter, the committee provides an update to the NRC’s previous assessments of CERP and related non-CERP project planning and implementation progress (NRC, 2007, 2008) as well as an analysis of any natural system benefits resulting from this progress to date. Also included are discussions of program- matic issues related to CERP progress, such as funding and project sequencing. CERP RESTORATION IMPLEMENTATION Progress restoring the South Florida ecosystem will come about only through implementation of restoration projects. The analysis of implementation progress provided in this section focuses on CERP projects, although many of these proj- ects build upon restoration benefits provided by non-CERP projects, which are discussed in the next section. Additional detail on implementation progress can be found in Chapter 7 of the South Florida Environmental Report (Williams et al., 2010). The Yellow Book (USACE and SFWMD, 1999) outlined a conceptual plan for 68 projects and identified a schedule for implementation. The originally ambi- tious timetable gave way to delays in project planning and lower-than-expected 62

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Implementation Progress 63 program funding. As a result, the project implementation schedule has been extended and revised several times since the CERP was launched. (See NRC [2008] for additional discussion of major causes of CERP delays.) The commit- tee’s attempt to track early CERP project implementation is shown in Table 3-1, which represents a merger of the CERP projects within the most recent schedule, termed the Integrated Delivery Schedule (discussed in more detail later in this chapter), and the earliest projects (scheduled for completion by 2010) from the previous Master Implementation Sequencing Plan (MISP) (USACE and SFWMD, 2005a). The projects listed in Table 3-1 are also shown on a map of the South Florida ecosystem in Figure 3-1. The task of tracking project progress and assessing delays over time is com- plex because some projects have been reorganized, transferred out of the CERP, or split into phases to achieve incremental restoration where feasible. However, the project status information (available at http://www.evergladesplan.org) has been significantly improved since the committee’s last report. Project planning progress can now be tracked in a single color-coded spreadsheet,1 and quarterly progress reports for multiple projects in a region can be viewed at one time.2 As of June 2010, four CERP restoration projects are actively under construc- tion, and four pilot projects are in an installation and testing phase. Many more projects are in planning and design phases (see Table 3-1). Estimated project completion dates continue to be delayed, and not a single CERP project has been completed as of the production of this report.3 Nevertheless, considering the state of Florida’s extreme budget challenges over the past two years, the project implementation schedule has remained more stable than might have been expected due to increased funding from the federal government for the Everglades restoration efforts, including assistance from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, also known as the economic stimulus. Funding is discussed in more detail later in this chapter. In the following sections the committee highlights CERP progress with a focus on progress in achieving natural system restoration benefits through incremental CERP project implementation and learning achieved through CERP pilot projects. CERP Projects In the past two years, the Everglades restoration has seen a resurgence of construction activity, thanks in part to a boost in federal funding and the See http://www.evergladesplan.org/pm/projects/project_docs/status/csf_milestones_current.pdf. 1 See http://www.evergladesplan.org/pm/projects/project_docs/status/central_current.pdf or http:// 2 www.evergladesplan.org/pm/projects/project_docs/status/south_current.pdf. One original CERP project, Acme Basin B, has been completed, but the project was expedited 3 by the state of Florida and withdrawn from the CERP program.

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64 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades TABLE 3-1 South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Project Status as of June 2010 Yellow Book MISP 1.0 2008 (1999) (2005) Estimated Estimated Estimated Completion Completion Completion Date Project or Component Name Date Date (NRC, 2008) PILOT PROJECTS C-43 ASR Pilot 2002 2006 2012 (Fig. 3-2, No. 1) Hillsboro ASR Pilot 2002 2006 2009 (Fig. 3-2, No. 2) Lake Okeechobee ASR Pilot 2001 2007 2012 (Includes Kissimmee River, Port Mayaca, and Moore Haven sites) (Fig. 3-2, No. 5) Regional ASR Study NA 2010–2015 NA L-31N (L-30) Seepage 2002 2008 2010 Management Pilot (Fig. 3-2, No. 4) Decomp Physical Model NA 2010–2015 NA C-111 Spreader Canal NA NA NA Design Test RESTORATION PROJECTS Melaleuca Eradication 2011 2007 2026 and Other Exotic Plants Winsberg Farm Wetlands 2005 2008 2010 Restoration (Fig. 3-2, No. 3) Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands 2018 2008 2011 (Phase 1) (Fig. 3-2, No. 6) Picayune Strand Restoration 2005 2009 2015 (Fig. 3-2, No. 7)

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Implementation Progress 65 Project IDS Implementation Construction (March 2010) Report Status; Estimated (PIR) or Installation Construction Pilot Project and Testing Completion Design Report Authorization Planning/ Status for Date (PPDR) Status Design Pilots Not specified PPDR Final Authorized in Completed Suspended due to Sept. 2004 WRDA 2000 poor site conditions Not specified PPDR Final Authorized in Completed Installed Sept. 2008; (but estimated to be Sept. 2004 WRDA 1999 Testing ongoing completed in 2011) Not specified PPDR Final Authorized in Completed Installed 2008; Sept. 2004 WRDA 1999 Testing ongoing (Kissimmee River only) Not specified NA NA NA Ongoing 2012 PPDR Final Authorized in Completed Not begun May 2009 WRDA 2000 2013 NA Programmatic Completed Not begun Authority WRDA 2000 2011 NA Programmatic Completed Ongoing Authority WRDA 2000 2011 Final June 2010 Programmatic Ongoing Start anticipated Authority late 2010 WRDA 2000 Not specified Draft Feb. 2008 NA Suspended Phase 1: Completed outside of CERP Phase 2: Not begun 2012 Draft March 2010 . Completed Ongoing; expedited by FL prior to authorization Merritt: 2012 Final, 2004; Construction Completed Prairie Canal Faka-Union: 2012 submitted to Authorized in completed in 2007 Miller: 2018 Congress WRDA 2007 (expedited by FL); Sept. 2005 Merritt ongoing

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66 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades TABLE 3-1 Continued Yellow Book MISP 1.0 2008 (1999) (2005) Estimated Estimated Estimated Completion Completion Completion Date Project or Component Name Date Date (NRC, 2008) Indian River Lagoon - South 2023 (Fig. 3-2, No. 8) - C-44 Reservoir* 2007 2009 2014 - Natural Areas Real Estate Not specified 2009 Not specified Acquisition Broward County WPAs - C-9 Impoundment* 2007 2009 2014 (Fig. 3-2, No. 9) - Western C-11 Diversion 2008 2009 2014 Impoundment* (Fig. 3-2, No. 10) - WCA 3A & 3B Levee See 2008 2008 2017 page Management* (Fig. 3-2, No. 9,10) Acme Basin B Discharge 2006 2007 2009 (Fig. 3-1, No. 11) Site 1 Impoundment* 2007 2009 2013 (Fig. 3-2, No. 2) C-111 Spreader Canal* 2008 2008 (Fig. 3-2, No. 12) Western Project (PIR#1) 2011 Eastern Project (PIR#2) TBD North Palm Beach County – Not specified Part 1 - C-51 and Loxahatchee 2011 2008 2008 (L-8 Basin) Reservoir (Fig. 3-2, No. 13) Everglades Agricultural Area 2009 2009 TBD Storage Reservoir, Part 1, Phase 1* (Fig. 3-2, No. 14)

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Implementation Progress 67 Project IDS Implementation Construction (March 2010) Report Status; Estimated (PIR) or Installation Construction Pilot Project and Testing Completion Design Report Authorization Planning/ Status for Date (PPDR) Status Design Pilots Not specified Final 2004; Construction submitted to Authorized in 2015 Congress Aug. WRDA 2007 Completed Not begun 2004 by state; ongoing by USACE Not specified NA NA Final April 2007 2019 Ongoing Not begun 2015 Ongoing Not begun 2023 Ongoing Not begun NA Discontinueda NA Completed Completed outside of CERP 2014 Final 2006; Construction Ongoing Not begun submitted to Authorized in Congress WRDA 2007 Dec. 2006 2012 Final Dec. 2009 Completed Ongoing; expedited by FL prior to authorization Not specified Not begun Not begun Not begun Not specified In development Ongoing Not specified Ongoing Expedited by FL prior to authorization; on hold pending funding TBD Revised Draft (2006) Completed Construction further revisions on suspendedb holdb

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68 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades TABLE 3-1 Continued Yellow Book MISP 1.0 2008 (1999) (2005) Estimated Estimated Estimated Completion Completion Completion Date Project or Component Name Date Date (NRC, 2008) Lake Okeechobee Watershed 2015 -Lakeside Ranch STA 2010 2010–2015 Not specified - Lake Istokpoga Regulation 2001 2008 Not specified Schedule* (Fig. 3-2, No. 15) Modify Rotenberger Wildlife Not specified 2009 2009 Management Area Operation Plan (Fig. 3-2, No. 16) C-43 Basin Storage: West Basin 2012 2010 2013 Storage Reservoir (Fig. 3-2, No. 1) WCA 3 Decompartmentalization 2020 and Sheetflow Enhancement (Decomp)* - Decomp Part 1 2010 2015–2020 2016 - Decomp Part 2 2010 2015–2020 2019 - Decomp Part 3 2019 2015–2020 Beyond 2020 ENP Seepage Management 2010 2010–2015 2016 NOTES: Projects in Table 3-1 reflect those that were included in MISP Band 1, those that are now identi- fied in the Integrated Delivery Schedule (March 2010 version) for construction start prior to 2020, and other projects deemed by the committee to be relevant to near-term restoration progress. Gray shading of project names reflects projects being expedited and/or carried out entirely with state funding as of 2010. Gray shading of planning/design or construction cells indicates past or present aspects of projects that were expedited with state funding. In most cases, design and/or construction of these projects was moving forward prior to the finalization of the PIR. Some of these projects are still considered CERP components, while others are now considered outside of the CERP; NA = not applicable; TBD = to be determined *Projects that were conditionally authorized in WRDA 2000, subject to approval of the PIR. The South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) has decided to work with local interests to a complete the design and construction of the Acme Basin B Discharge project and the Lakes Park Resto- ration project outside of the CERP. Cost sharing under the CERP is not anticipated; thus effort on these two PIRs has been discontinued, and CERP planning/design efforts have ended. The Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) Storage Reservoir project is on hold, pending the resolution b of planning for the acquisition of U.S. Sugar Corporation lands, although court cases (e.g., USA, et al. v. SFWMD, et al. 1:88-civ-01886-Moreno) may impact the plans for this project. SOURCES: DOI and USACE (2005); USACE, 2009a; L. Gerry, SFWMD, personal communication (2010); E. Bush, USACE, personal communication (2010); D. Tipple, USACE, personal communication (2010); Proj- ect Status Reports from www.evergladesplan.org; USACE and SFWMD (1999).

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Implementation Progress 69 Project IDS Implementation Construction (March 2010) Report Status; Estimated (PIR) or Installation Construction Pilot Project and Testing Completion Design Report Authorization Planning/ Status for Date (PPDR) Status Design Pilots 2023 In development Ongoing 2011 Ongoing Ongoing; expedited by FL prior to authorization Not specified Ongoing Ongoing (part of Lakeside Ranch project) NA NA NA Implement as NA needed 2014 Final 2009; Completed Not begun approved by USACE Chief of Eng. in March 2010 2019 2016 In development Ongoing Not begun 2018 Not begun Not begun Not begun 2019 Not begun Not begun Not begun 2016 On hold—to On hold Not begun resume 2013 pending pilot

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70 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades FIGURE 3-1 Locations of CERP projects and pilots listed in Table 3-1. These represent the projects in the Figure 3-1.eps November 2009 version of the Integrated Delivery Schedule as well as the projects previously anticipated to be completed by 2010. Based on new project scheduling, some of the projects originally scheduled with bitmap early start dates are now delayed beyond the 2020 timeframe. © International Mapping Associates congressional authorization of three projects in WRDA 2007. As noted in NRC (2008), the lengthy and arduous CERP planning and authorization process had previously caused substantial delays in CERP project implementation. Out of frustration with the pace of progress, the state of Florida expedited several proj- ects with full state funding, bypassing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)

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Implementation Progress 71 project planning and authorization process at their own risk. However, 10 years post CERP authorization, 7 PIRs out of roughly 45 total have been finalized (although 3 others have been completed in draft form). Four PIRs have been approved by the USACE chief of engineers, and three projects have received congressional authorization for construction (see Box 3-1), enabling the flow of federal funding to these three projects, if appropriated. As of June 2010, four additional CERP projects (C-43 West Basin Storage Reservoir; C-111 Spreader Canal, Western Phase; Broward County Water Preserve Areas; and the Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands, Phase 1) are being considered for inclusion in the next WRDA bill, which when passed would greatly expand the number of projects eligible for federal appropriations for construction. Meanwhile, the state of Florida is expediting construction of the C-111 Spreader Canal, Lakeside Ranch stormwater treatment area (STA), and Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands projects and some land clearing for the C-43 Reservoir with state funding. Although no CERP projects are anticipated to be fully constructed by the end of 2010, a few project subcomponents that will deliver restoration benefits have been completed or are nearing completion. These early benefits are described in this section. Also, groundbreaking ceremonies were held in January 2010 for the CERP Picayune Strand and state-expedited construction starts on the C-111 Spreader Canal, Western portion and Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands, Phase 1. Additionally, the Acme Basin B Project, originally part of the CERP but no longer considered a CERP project, was completed by the state of Florida as of March 2010. These projects and their documented and/or anticipated benefits are discussed in this section. NRC (2008) reported on a number of CERP proj- BOX 3-1 Summary of Congressionally Authorized Projects with Approved PIRs As of April 2010, three Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) proj- ects with approved program implementation reports (PIRs) have been congressionally authorized—Indian River Lagoon-South (IRL-S), Picayune Strand Restoration, and Site 1 Impoundment. Ten projects were also conditionally authorized in the Water Resources Development Act of 2000 (WRDA 2000), subject to approval of their PIRs by the au- thorizing committee (see Table 3-1). However, most of these conditionally authorized projects will need to go through the authorization process again because of substantial changes in project scope or budget during project refinement in the development of the PIRs (S. Appelbaum, USACE, personal communication, 2010). continued

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72 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades BOX 3-1 Continued Indian River Lagoon-South The IRL-S project (Figure 3-1, No. 8), an approximately $1.5 billion component of the CERP (in 2007 dollars), is located northeast of Lake Okeechobee. The C-44 Basin Storage Reservoir is subsumed within the overall IRL-S project, to which are added the C-25 and C-23/C-24 North and South Storage Reservoirs. The original Yellow Book plan (USACE and SFWMD, 1999) was limited to these four storage reservoirs, but the project plans have since been significantly altered. The four storage basins are now proposed to provide 130,000 acre-feet of water storage, a substantial decrease in storage from the 389,000 acre-feet of storage proposed in the Yellow Book. An additional 65,000 acre-feet of storage are proposed through wetland restoration and utilization of three natural storage areas on 92,000 acres of land and in four new STAs. Finally, 7.9 million cubic yards of muck will be dredged from the St. Lucie River and Estuary to provide 2,650 acres of clean substrate within the estuary for recolonization of marine organisms. The original Yellow Book plan aimed to reduce damaging flows to the St. Lucie Estuary and the IRL-S while also providing water supply for agriculture, thereby reducing de- mands on the Floridan aquifer. However, the PIR included added benefits for enhanced phosphorus and nitrogen reduction, improved estuarine water quality, restored upland habitats, increased spatial extent of wetlands and natural areas, and more natural flow patterns (USACE and SFWMD, 2004a; SFERTF, 2007). In fiscal year (FY) 2010, $26 million in federal funding was appropriated for the IRL-S project. Picayune Strand Restoration Located in western Collier County, the Picayune Strand Restoration project (Figure 3-1, No. 7) will restore and enhance more than 55,000 acres of wetlands in Southern Golden Gate Estates, an area once drained for development. The project will also im- prove the quality and timing of freshwater flows entering the Ten Thousand Islands Na- tional Wildlife Refuge, while maintaining flood protection for neighboring communities. This $393 million project (in 2007 dollars) includes a combination of spreader channels, canal plugs, road removal, pump stations, and flood protection levees. This project is one of the most significant for increasing the spatial extent of natural wetlands (USACE and SFWMD, 2005b; SFERTF, 2007). Site 1 Impoundment (Fran Reich Preserve) Located in Palm Beach County south of the Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge (LNWR), the Site 1 Impoundment (also called the Fran Reich Preserve) Project (Figure 3-1, No. 2) includes an aboveground reservoir adjacent to the Hillsboro Canal with a storage capacity of 6,400 acre-feet, an inflow pump station, spillways, and seepage management structures. Once completed, supplemental deliveries from the impoundment will reduce demands on Lake Okeechobee and LNWR, and the impound- ment pool will also provide groundwater recharge and reduce seepage from adjacent natural areas. The impoundment will also serve to reduce freshwater flows and pulsed releases to downstream estuaries. The cost of the project has been estimated at $84 million (in 2007 dollars) (USACE and SFWMD, 2006; Williams et al., 2010). With $41 mil- lion in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act stimulus, construction is anticipated to begin in late 2010 (M. Magley, USACE, personal communication, 2010).

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Implementation Progress 101 FIGURE 3-12 U.S. Sugar Corporation land to be acquired by the SFWMD, including option Figure 3-12.eps lands. bitmap SOURCE: https://my.sfwmd.gov/portal/page/portal/xrepository/sfwmd_repository_pdf/ rog_map_2010_0804.pdf the 2006 biological opinion in support of the Interim Operational Plan (IOP), which outlines the current water management rules in WCA-3 to protect the Cape Sable seaside sparrow and its habitat (USACE, 2002). In particular, the IOP established a schedule for closures of the S-12 structures along the south- west edge of WCA-3A, which has led to problems with high water in southern

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102 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades WCA-3A (see Chapter 4 for a discussion of water management in WCA-3A). With the pending expiration of the biological opinion on the IOP in November 2010, restoration managers saw the opportunity to improve upon the existing operational schedule for the benefit of multiple species, including the snail kite, wood stork, Cape Sable seaside sparrow, and tree islands, while maintaining the Central and South Florida project purposes. The new operational plan needs to be in place by November 2010, and the team has had only approximately one year to review existing science and to evaluate potential strategies for improving water management within cur- rent constraints (e.g., no new structures, no impacts to water supply and flood control, water quality criteria). The changes under consideration are discussed in Chapter 4. The November 2010 deadline will limit the range of options that can be considered, because significant changes and any new structures would trigger a lengthy National Environmental Policy Act review. However, team members envision a continuing process, whereby the multi-agency team could continue to improve the operation schedule over time based on new information to maximize benefits for multiple species sooner rather than later, while awaiting further structural improvements through the CERP. The committee commends the restoration team for this initiative to expedite restoration progress (see also Chapter 4). PROGRAMMATIC PROGRESS In the first 10 years of the CERP, progress was primarily programmatic, with the development of an institutional structure and guidance to support CERP plan- ning and adaptive management, which laid the groundwork for the construction progress now under way. Many of the programmatic challenges noted in NRC (2008) still remain, including the complex project planning and approval process required for federal funding. However, some improvements have occurred over the past two years, including agreement on a new integrated schedule for the restoration, adoption of a “master agreement” between the state of Florida and the federal government to address some long-standing procedural constraints, and increasing federal restoration funding. These and other programmatic issues are discussed in the following sections. Project Scheduling In response to advice from the Government Accountability Office (2007) and NRC (2007), CERP planners worked for more than a year to develop a revised project implementation schedule for the South Florida ecosystem restoration, termed the “Integrated Delivery Schedule” (IDS; Figure 3-13). In the IDS, the

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Project 2013 2014 2015 2017 2019 2010 2011 2012 2016 2018 2020 1 Seminole Big Cypress 2 West Palm Beach Canal/STA-1E 3 C-111 Spreader Canal Design Test Western Project 4 L-31N Seepage Management Pilot Project 5 C-111 South Dade 6 Kissimmee River Restoration 7 Modified Water Deliveries to Everglades National Park Tamiami Trail Modifications Conveyance and Seepage Control Features 8 Picayune Strand Restoration Merritt Pump Station Faka Union Pump Station Miller Pump Station Lakeside Ranch STA - Part of the Taylor Creek/ 9 Nubbin Slough Storage and Treatment Area 10 Site 1 Impoundment 11 Indian River Lagoon-South C-44 Reservoir/STA 12 Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands Phase 1 Water Conservation Area 3 Decompartmentalization and 13 Sheetflow Enhancement (Decomp) System Operating Manual System Operating Manual Decomp Physical Model Decomp Part 1 Decomp Part 2 Decomp Part 3 14 Caloosahatchee River (C-43) West Basin Storage Reservoir 15 Melaleuca Eradication and Other Exotic Plants 16 Broward County Water Preserve Areas C-11 Impoundment C-9 Impoundment 2023 WCA 3A&3B Levee/S-356 17 ENP Seepage Management 18 Lake Okeechobee Watershed 2023 19 Herbert Hoover Dike Rehabilitation 2025 Long-Term Plan for Achieving Water Quality Goals 20 in the Everglades Protection Area Projects 21 EAA Reservoir/STA TO BE DETERMINED Projects are currently federal construction. Projects are currently non-federal construction, subject to change based on funding allocation. 8 March 2010 Construction has started on these projects. FIGURE 3-13 Integrated Delivery Schedule, March 2010 draft. SOURCE: L. Gerry, SFWMD, personal communication, 2010. 103 Figure 3-13.eps landscape recommend redraft the ruling and irregularly shaped symbols

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104 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades USACE and the SFWMD, in consultation with numerous stakeholders, repriori- tized the timing of future restoration activities according to anticipated funding streams, although it is envisioned to be a living document that will be updated as needed. The IDS replaces the Master Implementation Sequencing Plan (MISP) for CERP projects, which was last updated in 2005. Workshops were held with the South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force (Task Force) and the Working Group to help build consensus on the new schedule. The guiding principles for the planning process emphasized the need to deliver restoration benefits at the “earliest practicable time,” consistent with recommendations of NRC (2007), and recognized the importance of supporting ongoing commitments to key non-CERP projects that contribute to the success of the CERP (Appelbaum, 2008). A description of the development process and rationale for the IDS was released in June 2010, but the document does not include justification for specific sequencing decisions. The “leaflet” explains that the IDS uses a “hybrid approach” that starts with CERP and non-CERP projects that are already authorized or otherwise committed, and adjusts the schedule, pulling some non-authorized projects forward or pushing other authorized proj- ects back based on their ability to deliver “meaningful restoration benefits as early as possible” (USACE, 2010b). CERP planners state that the IDS represents the “optimum sequence for implementation of South Florida ecosystem restora- tion projects” consistent with incremental adaptive restoration as proposed by the NRC (2007), construction authority, and available funding (USACE, 2010b). The IDS is updated every few months to reflect changes in funding, project imple- mentation progress, and changes in prioritization, and the March 2010 version is shown in Figure 3-13. The IDS shows that a large number of CERP projects are being pushed back beyond the 2020 timeframe. However, Appelbaum (2008) noted that “no CERP projects are being taken off the table.” The near-term IDS (as of March 2010) includes several pre-CERP and CERP projects—specifically Mod Waters, C-111 (South Dade), and Decomp—that have the potential to significantly alter the distribution and timing of water flows through the WCAs and into Everglades National Park. These projects have repeatedly been identified as highest priority for reversing ecosystem decline and progressing toward ecological restoration of the remnant Everglades (e.g., Ad Hoc Senior Scientists, 2007). However, their benefits cannot be fully real- ized without provision of additional water, which will require addressing water quality issues and providing significant new storage. As discussed in the next two chapters, even allowing for the completion of the stalled EAA Reservoir, until larger volumes of clean water are made available, water managers will face ecological tradeoffs among subregions of the WCAs and Everglades National Park. Increased water storage in the EAA and in the northern Everglades will almost certainly become a high priority in the years ahead.

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Implementation Progress 105 Revisions to the Programmatic Regulations The Programmatic Regulations established a procedural framework and set specific requirements that guide the implementation of the CERP to ensure that the goals and purposes of the CERP are achieved. The Programmatic Regulations were promulgated in 2003 and were slated to undergo a five-year review in 2008. This review provided an opportunity for the USACE to propose revisions that could improve the project planning and evaluation process and to address some of the procedural impediments identified in NRC (2008). However, little apparent progress has been made on proposed revisions, even though this rep- resents an important opportunity to enhance future planning progress. Master Agreement A significant programmatic accomplishment of the restoration organizations has been a “master agreement” signed on August 13, 2009, by the Department of the Army and the South Florida Water Management District. The agreement was intended to promote cooperation between the two agencies for construc- tion, operation, maintenance, and repair of CERP projects. In addition to specifying a common terminology for projects, the agree- ment provided for financial sharing of CERP obligations. Consistent with the original CERP agreement, the federal government and the SFWMD agreed to have a 50:50 cost share of CERP construction. The Master Agreement specifies reporting, allowable scope for the joint responsibility, and processes to provide accounting for this cost sharing. For example, monitoring performed during the construction of a CERP project is allowed within the construction expense. Similarly, expenses incurred for land acquisition can be included in allowable construction expenses and a process for valuing such acquisitions is specified, settling previous long-standing disagreements. Methods of payment and valua- tion of in-kind services are also specified. However, the actual expenditures by the federal government still depend upon project authorizations and appropria- tions enacted by Congress. Coordination of project management activities is also required by the Master Agreement. The agencies agreed to share budget and cost information, sched- ules, and quality assurance and quality control. As CERP projects are completed and enter into operation, expenses for operations, maintenance, repair, and renovation are also to be shared equally as long as federal funds are available. As CERP projects enter into more active construction phases, the existence of the Master Agreement provisions should smooth the processes of project management, budgeting, and scheduling. As a result, coordination between the USACE and the SFWMD should be enhanced.

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106 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades Funding Florida state funding for Everglades restoration peaked at $800 million in fiscal year (FY) 2007 with activity on state expedited projects, previously known as Acceler8 (Figure 3-14). With the economic recession and negotiations for the U.S. Sugar Corporation land acquisition, funding levels dropped in 2008-2009. In the FY 2010 budget adopted in October 2009, the SFWMD plans funding of $1.1 billion for Everglades restoration (CERP and non-CERP), representing a significant increase, although included in this budget was $536 million in Certificates of Participation for the acquisition of 73,000 acres of U.S. Sugar Corporation land (SFWMD, 2009c) that has now been downscaled to $197 mil- lion. Thus, even though the budget appears to be a sizeable increase in invest- ment, it reflects a major decrease in funding for existing restoration programs compared to prior years. According to the draft Task Force cross-cut budget (K. Berger, SFERTF, personal communication, 2010), anticipated state funding for CERP projects declined to $146 million in FY 2010, a level that is less than 1800 ARRA, Non-CERP 1600 Federal, Non-CERP ARRA, CERP 1400 Federal, CERP State, Non-CERP Millions of dollars 1200 State, CERP 1000 800 600 400 200 0 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Year FIGURE 3-14 Federal and state Everglades restoration funding amounts including CERP and non-CERP activities (enacted 2001-2009 and requested 2010). ARRA funding reflects funding enacted as of September 2010. Figure 3-14.eps SOURCE: Data from SFERTF cross-cut budget (2010); K. Berger, SFERTF, personal communica- tion, 2010.

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Implementation Progress 107 federal CERP funding for the first time since the launch of the CERP. This budget stress has also caused the state to scale back on its expedited project initiatives. Federal funding for Everglades restoration has long trailed funding from the state of Florida. Because of the lack of congressional authorizations for CERP project construction prior to 2007 and to address the large backload of unfin- ished non-CERP foundation projects that are essential to restoration, most of the federal funding has been concentrated on non-CERP projects (e.g., Kissimmee River Restoration, Mod Waters). But in the past two years, the federal government has substantially increased funding for Everglades restoration, including CERP and non-CERP projects (see Figure 3-14). In FY 2010, the USACE received $180 million for South Florida ecosystem restoration (USACE budget only), represent- ing nearly 10 percent of the agency’s civil works construction budget ($2.03 billion). The federal government also provided nearly $88 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA, or economic stimulus) funding for CERP projects over FY 2009 and 2010, and an additional $7.5 million for non-CERP projects (M. Magley, USACE, personal communication, 2010). This recent increase in federal spending has created a new programmatic hurdle related to CERP federal-state (50:50) cost sharing. To qualify for federal cost sharing, non-federal CERP expenditures must be formally “credited” or cer- tified. Before the crediting process can begin, a project must be authorized by Congress and have a signed project partnership agreement (PPA), which reflects the legal and technical design agreements between the federal and state sponsor related to project construction. The USACE is prohibited from exceeding the overall credited expenditures from non-federal partners at any time, and federal funding would be halted before it exceeded non-federal credited expenditures. As shown in Figure 3-14, prior state CERP expenditures have greatly exceeded federal expenditures, but many of these expenditures (e.g., land acquisition, construction work on expedited projects) have not yet been credited. PPAs recently signed for the Site 1 Impoundment and the Indian River Lagoon-South (IRL-S) projects provide enough credited expenditures to allow continued federal funding (at the current pace) through approximately 2014. Continued project authorizations, however, are needed to prevent a halt in federal funding for the CERP after this date (E. Bush, USACE, personal communication, 2010). Rehabilitation of the Herbert Hoover Dike also represent a substantial portion of the overall USACE budget. In 2008 and 2009, respectively, $55 million and $74 million were appropriated in the USACE Jacksonville District budget for rehabilitation of the dike, and $123 million was appropriated in FY 2010 (SFERTF, 2009; H.R. 3183 Conference Report). The construction efforts are required to maintain the safety and stability of the dike and should not be considered part of the South Florida ecosystem restoration funding; therefore, they are not included in Figure 3-14. The estimated financial requirement for

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108 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades the entire Herbert Hoover Dike rehabilitation effort is estimated to be $1 bil- lion (SFERTF, 2009). It remains uncertain whether the political will can remain to support continued large federal expenditures for the Florida USACE budget. Continued support for federal funding of Everglades restoration projects is critical to maintain the momentum and create near-term restoration benefits. The Task Force tracks and compiles expenditures and financial requirements for all South Florida restoration projects as reported by the sponsoring agencies in the annual Integrated Financial Plan (SFERTF, 2009). The estimated financial requirements and expenditures through FY 2009 for different categories of CERP projects are shown in Table 3-3. The largest expenditures have been for surface-water stor- age, natural area habitat restoration, and other related hydrology projects. Of an estimated $13 billion in financial requirements for CERP projects, only 2 percent has been spent through FY 2009, leaving financial requirements of more than $12 billion. More progress on CERP projects is expected in the future as CERP precursor projects are completed. In 2004, the estimated cost of CERP was $11 billion (DOI and USACE, 2005), which was to be split equally between the federal and state governments. Five years later, the Task Force (SFERTF, 2009) made an estimate of $12.8 billion to adjust for inflation and any approved changes to project designs; thus, the 50 percent federal share is now estimated at $6.4 billion. This total does not include expenditures on non-CERP projects. Moreover, this CERP total is likely to grow TABLE 3-3 Total Estimated Financial Requirements for the CERP and Funds Expended Through FY 2009 (in 2008 Dollars) Funds Financial Appropriated Requirement Through FY09 Category of CERP Project ($ Million) ($ Million) Surface water storage 7,338 89 Alternative water storage 2,176 13 Modify impediments to sheet flow 364 11 Other related hydrology projects 358 54 Stormwater treatment areas and water quality 216 1 Natural area habitat restoration 1,274 69 Water reuse 1,100 2 Sum of categories 12,826 239 NOTE: This table does not include expenditures for program level activities (including monitoring and assessment) or land purchases that have not yet been credited. Also, only SFWMD expenditures through FY07 are included. SOURCE: SFERTF, 2009; A. Murphy, USACE, personal communication, 2010.

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Implementation Progress 109 with inflation over time. At a continued funding rate of $200 million per year for CERP projects (with funding increasing with inflation at the same rate as con- struction costs), the federal portion of the CERP would be fully funded in roughly 32 years. With increased annual federal expenditures on CERP or a scaled-back CERP plan, this timeframe would be shorter. Conversely, increased costs would lengthen this timeframe. Fiscal constraints dictate a long-term approach over a period of multiple decades for completion of CERP. The CERP was expected to take several decades to complete, but the pace of restoration over the past decade suggests 40–60 years as a more realistic timeframe. Political and financial support for Everglades restoration will cer- tainly erode steadily over such a long time in the face of so many competing needs for public funding unless tangible ecological and public benefits can be demonstrated through CERP monitoring and assessment activities. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS During the past two years the restoration program has made tangible prog- ress, and four CERP projects are now under construction. Continued federal commitment is especially important at this time. The Everglades restoration pro- gram has completed the arduous federal planning and authorization processes for three projects and is now moving forward with construction of the Picayune Strand project with federal funding. Additionally, despite budget challenges, the state of Florida continues to expedite the construction of three projects (C-111 Spreader Canal, Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands, and Lakeside Ranch STA). After years of delay, it is critically important to maintain this momentum to minimize further degradation of the system during CERP implementation. Some restoration benefits can be attributed to partial restoration of Pica- yune Strand; however, the completion of additional ongoing and planned proj- ects will be required to see substantial restoration benefits for the Everglades ecosystem. The SWFMD (Williams et al., 2010) reports that plugging one canal in Picayune Strand raised water tables on approximately 13,000 acres of adjacent wetlands, representing partial hydrologic restoration on approximately one- fourth of the project area. Construction is also under way on the C-111 Spreader Canal and the Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands projects, but no significant restora- tion benefits have yet resulted from these efforts. Each of these projects is being implemented in phases to deliver early restoration benefits when possible with available funding. Pilot projects and field-scale experiments are addressing some important design uncertainties but could be better linked to decision making and imple- mentation. In addition to the originally conceived CERP pilot projects, CERP planners have recently initiated two field-scale experiments (the C-111 Spreader

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110 Progress Toward Restoring the Everglades Canal design test and the Decomp Physical Model [DPM]). These projects are intended to reduce design uncertainties that were points of contention among stakeholders, which limited progress on project planning. The C-111 design test will address important hydrologic uncertainties; additional pilot components are needed to address the potential impacts of elevated nutrients on receiving wetlands. The DPM will produce the most detailed observation data to date on the hydrology and ecology of sheet flow in the ridge and slough system. Never- theless, limited replication and the two-year duration limit the statistical power of the experiment. The DPM will provide information on hydraulic, hydrologic, and short-term ecological differences between canal backfilling options and will improve understanding of the hydrologic response of WCA-3B to re-water- ing, but the experiment will likely require additional replication to settle the current debate over the efficacy of different canal treatments. CERP scientists and planners should consider other means of synthesizing and communicating results beyond traditional hypothesis tests to facilitate stakeholder discussions and decision making under uncertainty. Aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) pilot studies have contributed valuable hydrogeologic and geochemical information, but the administrative delays, site limitations, funding constraints, and arsenic leaching encountered are indicative of serious challenges facing large-scale use of ASR. The final ASR pilot report should address the impacts of these factors on use of ASR at the unprecedented scale envisioned for the CERP and should compare the long-term costs and benefits of ASR against other less energy-intensive storage alternatives. Initiation of construction of a 1-mile bridge on the Tamiami Trail is an important, albeit partial, step forward. NRC (2008) called the Mod Waters project, of which the bridge is one component, “one of the most discouraging stories in Everglades restoration,” and stated that if the downsized 1-mile bridge could not be built, the outlook for the CERP was dismal. With leadership from the administration and Congress, the federal government was able to overcome numerous obstacles to ultimately break ground on the project in December 2009. Although the benefits derived from the 1-mile bridge represent only a fraction of those envisioned in earlier Mod Waters plans, planning is under way to consider additional bridging that could take advantage of a downturn in construction costs. The River of Grass initiative could create options for additional water stor- age and water quality treatment to help meet CERP objectives. The SFWMD governing board recently approved the purchase of nearly 27,000 acres of U.S. Sugar Corporation lands—substantially less than what was previously announced—near areas with historically high phosphorus loads. These lands could help the SFWMD come into compliance with current water quality requirements, yet this represents only a small step toward the goals of the River

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Implementation Progress 111 of Grass initiative. Prior to this announcement, the SFWMD had facilitated an engaging and inclusive River of Grass planning process and created an impres- sive set of data visualization tools to support the effort. As of mid-2010, the specific benefits that will accrue to the CERP from the River of Grass initiative cannot be determined, because the planning and design process has not been completed and the availability of funding to support future land purchases is unknown. Also, it remains unclear how successfully other political and eco- nomic constraints can or will be addressed for the remaining “option” lands (e.g., reality of land swaps, opportunity costs, stakeholder concerns) and how the initiative will be coordinated with the CERP. Given the slower-than-anticipated pace of implementation and unreliable funding schedule, projects should be scheduled with the aim of achieving sub- stantial restoration benefits as soon as possible. The latest Integrated Delivery Schedule appears consistent with this goal and should generate substantial res- toration benefits by 2020. Although many projects have been delayed, aggres- sive schedules have been maintained (as of the March 2010 IDS) for the Decomp project, seepage management, and critical foundation projects. These projects offer significant restoration benefits to the remnant Everglades ecosystem, but the benefits cannot be fully realized without the provision of additional water, which will require substantial new storage and associated water quality treatment. Maintaining political and public support for Everglades restoration will be critical to future CERP progress. Multiple decades of sustained commitment and a high level of public funding will be needed to complete the CERP. Maintain- ing this commitment will be a continuing challenge, and early, demonstrable public and ecological benefits from restoration activities are keys to retaining public support.