When the phosphate industry wanted to move operations from Polk County into Hardee County, Florida, an economist from the University of Miami completed a study showing no net gain in the local economy from phosphate mining in Hardee County Florida. Economist reports indicate a net loss to the local economy based on strip mining instead of using the land for fresh water, agriculture, cattle, and tourism. The net loss is estimated to be over eight million dollars in Hardee County each year over the life of the mine. The phosphate mine, in this case, covers over eleven thousand acres of pristine environmentally critical unmatched aquatic floras and fauna resources with national importance. Before being purchased by the phosphate industry, the land produced income from agriculture, cattle, and tourism. Once the land is stripped, it will no longer support life.
Unfortunately, this same area was acquired by the phosphate industry intent on stripping tons of valuable phosphate reserves just beneath the surface. (1) Florida’s phosphate industry officials will remove and destroy thousands of acres of landscape causing environmentally critical impacts, displacing all wildlife in the area. This area and large tracts of land nearby will be stripped mined by large walking draglines supplying hundreds of tons of phosphatic materials daily to the fertilizer production plant located nearby. The dragline’s large bucket can remove enough earth in one pass to fill fifteen standard sized dump trucks (about 15 cubic yards/truck).
- Altman Permit. (2016). ourphosphaterisk.com/permitting/altman-permit.
- Building and Development Services. www.mymanatee.org/home/government/departments/building-and-development-services.html.
- Mosaic Fertilizer threatens to sue FL county www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=389×4148828.