World Oceans Day 2022
Organized by the Perdido Key Area Chamber of Commerce, the June 8 World Oceans Day celebration at the Perdido Key Visitors Center was a considerable success. Families, other groups and individuals enjoyed the many ocean-themed exhibits and discussions provided by participants. Activities included a touch-tank with animals found in local waters plus a visit by a tiny owl from the Wildlife Sanctuary of Northwest Florida. The event also featured the opening of the Perdido Key Coastal Demonstration Garden adjacent to the Visitors Center.
World Oceans Day is held every year to celebrate the bounty of our oceans but also concern about their future. One initiative is the 30×30 project to protect 30% of the oceans and 30% of land by 2030; currently less than 17% of land and 8% of the oceans worldwide are protected. With problems such as illegal fishing and the failure to adopt international rules to ensure ocean sustainability, one ocean activist group noted “The world’s largest ecosystem … is still unprotected and dying as we watch.” For more on these issues, see the June 27, 2022 AP News article “Biden aims at China with new illegal fishing policy framework” by Barry Hatton and Joshua Goodman at https://apnews.com/article/climate-politics-china-5c5b2f79c2f02196651cf99f5bfc4ac0 and the June 27, 2022 Washington Post article “UN Chief: National Selfishness delaying global oceans deal” by Barry Hatton at https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/un-oceans-conference-eyes-steps-toward-high-seas-agreement/2022/06/27/6fef8582-f5e6-11ec-81db-ac07a394a86b_story.html.
NAS Pensacola Compatible Use Study Begins
The NAS Pensacola Compatible Use Study began with a public meeting on June 13, 2022 at the Escambia County Central Office Complex. A number of displays, slides and handouts helped explain the impact NAS Pensacola has on Escambia County and surrounding areas. The study will continue for several months and welcomes public input. As published by Escambia County: “The Compatible Use Study is a collaborative planning effort between Escambia County, the City of Pensacola, the City of Gulf Breeze, state and federal agencies, the general public, and other interested and affected stakeholders. Its purpose is to address
land use and other activities incompatible with NAS Pensacola’s mission and effective environmental stewardship while fostering community growth and economic vitality. Planning efforts will directly benefit the community and NAS Pensacola through several measures, including enhancing resiliency and preserving environmentally sensitive lands and natural resources, improving communication and coordination between NAS Pensacola and community leaders for planning efforts and partnerships, and protecting the health and safety of area residents and workers.”
PKA Mailing List Revision
PKA is updating its member mailing list and will make the new list effective on August 1, 2022. Every effort is being made to ensure accuracy, but please contact PKA at firstname.lastname@example.org if you do not receive the “Key Notes August 2022” by e-mail within a few days after the beginning of August.
Fireworks on the Beach
Several public fireworks displays are planned for the Fourth of July weekend while many individuals will put on their own shows. Clearing fireworks debris from area beaches after the Fourth is often necessary, but the displays can be harmful to shorebirds such as Navarre’s black skimmers and other local species. For more on these concern, see the June 28, 2022 Florida Today article “Bird lovers urge Brevard County beachgoers to forego July 4th fireworks” by Jim Waymar at https://www.floridatoday.com/story/news/local/environment/2022/06/28/no-july-4-fireworks-brevard-county-beaches-bird-lovers-florida-biologists-say/7754257001/. For information on Florida fireworks laws, see the June 26, 2022 Patch article “4th Of July 2022 Fireworks Laws: What’s Legal In Florida” by Colleen Martin at https://patch.com/florida/across-fl/4th-july-2022-fireworks-laws-what-s-legal-florida.
Golf Carts on Perdido Key
An emerging pedestrian and traffic safety issues on Perdido Key and nearby communities is growing use of golf carts and similar vehicles by individuals and organizations. While useful and fun, integrating golf carts with vehicular traffic, cyclists and pedestrians is challenging and potentially hazardous. Golf cart, LSV (low-speed vehicle) and ATV use on Perdido Key is regulated by a number of Florida Statues. PKA has attempted to clarify where use is or is not authorized in a paper titled “Golf Carts on Perdido Key 2022” posted on the Archive page of the PKA website. As an example, golf carts, LSVs and ATVs should not be operated on any Perdido Key path or sidewalk. While PKA believes the paper is accurate, comments for its improvement are appreciated.
Another Challenge to Beach Access #4
Beach Access #4 located about halfway between Perdido Key State Park and the Flora-Bama was opened in March 2022 after considerable debate and legal challenges. Following its opening and initial use, an attorney has sent a letter to the US Fish and Wildlife Service requesting a halt to its use arguing that, as published by WEAR, Escambia County violated Habitat Conservation Plan rules by opening the access. For more on the issue, go to the PKA Facebook page or the May 4, 2022 WEAR article “Letter claims Escambia County violated Perdido Key public beach access agreement” by Oliver Iverson at
ECUA Recycling Facility Closed for Repairs
The ECUA Recycling Facility will be closed for repairs until mid-August 2022 with supply chain issues delaying its reopening. ECUA will continue normal recycling collections, but materials will not be recycled. For more on the issue, see the June 17, 2022 NorthEscambia.com article “ECUA Shuts Down Recycling Center, Awaiting Repair Parts” at http://www.northescambia.com/2022/06/ecua-shuts-down-recycling-center-awaiting-repair-parts.
Garcon Point Bridge
The Garcon Point Bridge that provided access to Gulf Breeze and Pensacola Beach when the Pensacola Bay Bridge was damaged during Hurricane Sally will be taken over by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) as part of a $134 million settlement with bondholders. In addition, bridge tolls have been reduced by more than half to $2.75. For more on the transfer and controversial history of the bridge, see the June 24, 2022 Pensacola News Journal article “FDOT agrees to pay $134 million to take control of Garcon Point Bridge” by Jim Turner at https://www.pnj.com/story/news/local/pensacola/2022/06/24/garcon-point-bridge-fight-fdot-pay- 134-million-take-control/7725177001/.
2022 US Election Dates
Deadline to register for Primary Election is July 25
Last day to request vote-by-mail ballot is August 13
Primary Election is on August 23 with early voting from August 13 to August 20
Deadline to register for General Election is October 11
General Election is on November 08 with early voting from October 29 to November 05
(Drawn from June 2022 AARP Bulletin and escambiavotes.gov)
More on Plastic Pollution
Recent research found microplastics for the first time in freshly fallen snow in Antarctica, having previously been detected in Antarctic sea ice and seawater. The likely source is the various research stations in Antarctica. According to other studies, “microplastics are spiralling across the globe, often transported by dusts, wind and ocean currents” and can carry harmful substances like heavy metals and algae. For more on the issue, see the June 9, 2022 BBC article “Microplastics found in fresh Antarctic snow” by Navin Singh Khadka at https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-61739159.
The US Department of Interior recently announced: “it will phase out sales of plastic water bottles and other single-use products at national parks and on other public lands over the next decade, targeting a major source of US pollution.” According to Christy Leavitt of the conservation group Oceana, the policy “will curb millions of pounds of unnecessary disposable plastic in our nation parks and other public lands, where it can end up polluting these special
areas.” For more on the issue, see the June 8, 2022 AP News article “Interior phasing out plastic water bottles at national parks” by Matthew Daly at https://apnews.com/article/travel-business-pollution-climate-and-environment-wildlife-aaa7e3ed20ccaf4b344f73fdbcb42f90.
July 01-03,12-17,26-31 – Pensacola Blue Wahoos at Blue Wahoo Stadium
July 01-03 – Fourth of July at OWA
July 02 – Firecracker 5K road race in downtown Pensacola
July 02 – Flora-Bama Freedom Run
July 04 – Shark Run at the Flora-Bama
July 04 – Independence Day Street Party at The Wharf
July 04 – Sertoma Fourth of July Celebration in downtown Pensacola
July 04 – Symphony Sparks and Stars at Community Maritime Park in Pensacola
July 04 – Fireworks at Pensacola Beach, Gulf Shores and elsewhere
July 05 – Gulf State Park presentation “Sea Turtles” at Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores
July 06-09 – Blue Angels Air Show at Pensacola Beach
July 15 – Gallery Night “Motorin Car Show” in downtown Pensacola
July 13-17 – 2020 Grand Marlin Grand Championship of the Gulf in Orange Beach
July 14-17 – Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo on Dauphin Island
July 19 – Gulf State Park presentation “Beach Nesting” at Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores
July 23 – Doobie Brothers at The Wharf
Blue Angels practice at NAS Pensacola July 06,07,08,09,12,13,19,20,26,27
Bands on the Beach at Pensacola Beach every Tuesday, 7-9 PM from April to October
The following websites provide additional information about events in our great Gulf Coast region:
Perdido Key Association Board of Directors