WIKIPEDIA states, “Large walking draglines, operating twenty-four hours a day in surface mines, excavate raw pebble phosphate rock mixed with clay and sand known as matrix. Ironically, phosphate rock is a declining export.”
The Peace River watershed origin lies in west central Florida (Fig. 2), about forty miles east of the Tampa Bay area. Florida’s Peace River was declared an “endangered river” by “American Rivers.org,” a non-profit organization committed to protecting and restoring North American rivers.
The central Florida region holds unique pristine watersheds, marshlands, bogs, and other freshwater naturally occurring filtering systems. Watersheds are areas of land with waterways that flow to a common destination. Most of the region’s drinking water is pumped from aquifers that are “recharged” from the watersheds described above.
The Peace River Watershed covers (2300) square miles in the west central Florida and contains the majority of the Florida phosphate mining industry including Bone Valley. Phosphate strip mining companies use draglines to remove surface soils, (known as Overburden), down (100 feet); over thousands of contiguous acres.