Lake Okeechobee Water Quality

Location

North of Lake Okeechobee, adjacent to the Kissimmee River

Resource

Wetland, Species

Solution

Pay for Performance

Contracted through EIP’s innovative Pay for Performance model, the LAKE OKEECHOBEE WATER QUALITY project will provide the State of Florida with a state-of-the-art method to reduce nitrogen and phosphorous destined for Lake Okeechobee. This 3,400 acre project is slated to be the largest performance-based contract for the delivery of environmental outcomes in Florida. 

Within the scope of this project, EIP will design, construct and operate a new stormwater treatment facility to reduce the threat of blue green algae in South Florida by capturing water from the Kissimmee River and associated canals before runoff and nutrients run into the lake. Initial evaluations show that the project could result in Stormwater Treatment Area cells comprising roughly 3,100 acres of effective treatment area, which have the potential to remove approximately 26 metric tons of total phosphorous and 21 metric tons of total nitrogen annually. 

Under the Pay for Performance model, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) has contracted with EIP to deliver specific milestones for a fixed price. The first phase of the project is comprised of sixteen months of analysis and initial design. Phase 2 entails an additional year of final design and permitting, two years of construction, one year of facility start-up, followed by five years of operations. 

The Lake Okeechobee Water Quality project also marks the first project delivered by the private sector to the SFWMD under a performance-based contract.  

EIP is active in Florida, owning and operating five wetland mitigation banks on which over 2,200 acres of herbaceous and forested wetland habitat in the Tampa Bay area have been restored. Restoration activities being performed by EIP in Florida include restoring wetland hydrology, reintroduction of native species, and reinstating a prescribed burn regime. 

In the News

  • New water cleaning project aims to improve the health of SWFL water systems (WINK News) 
  • Hybrid filters in STAs could increase phosphorus reduction in water from Kissimmee River (Lake Okeechobee News)

 

Lake Okeechobee Water Quality

A video snapshot from the early stages of the Hybrid Stormwater Treatment Area, which will reduce the threat of blue green algae in South Florida.

;