Report: Tampa Bay water is clear - WFLA News Channel 8

Report: Tampa Bay water is clear

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Bayway Bridge in Pinellas County Bayway Bridge in Pinellas County
A new report on the water quality of Tampa Bay is clear, the water is improving. For the second year in a row, the four areas of Tampa Bay, Hillsborough Bay, Old Tampa Bay, Middle Tampa Bay, and Lower Tampa Bay, all met water quality targets.

Tampa Bay Estuary Program Executive Director, Holly Greening, calls this improvement unprecedented.

"In parts of the bay we can see down 30 feet to the bottom, and we have not seen that before," said Greening. 

As the water clarity improves, sunlight can penetrate deeper into the water to help seagrasses grow.

"Water clarity is important for seagrass growth, which is a cornerstone of bay health," said Greening.

The improvements to Tampa Bay are noticed across the country. Greening was chosen to speak to a March 12 panel on Managing Water Quality in Washington, D.C. She credits a collaborative approach for the relatively fast turn-around in water quality from the 1970s to now.

"We have an incredible group of people who work together, the industry, the local government, the citizens. They're all doing things that are helping to improve Tampa Bay," said Greening.

A seagrass survey that will come later this year by Southwest Florida Water Management District will provide more information about the bay's overall health.
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