The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District has provided a comment to the St. Johns Riverkeeper’s Notice of Intent to Sue the Corps regarding the proposed St. Johns River harbor deepening project.
In April 2014, the Corps issued its Final Environmental Impact Statement for the JAXPORT proposal to dredge 13 miles of the St. Johns River from a depth of 40-feet to 47-feet.
Two days ago, on Tuesday, August 11, 2015, St. Johns Riverkeeper showed concern over the project, announcing a Notice of Intent to Sue the Corps over the St. Johns River harbor deepening project.
Lisa Rinaman, from the St. Johns Riverkeeper said that the Army Corps of Engineers underestimated the environmental impacts, overstated the economic benefits, and done nothing to offset the damage that will occur, leaving the Riverkeeper with no choice but to challenge this project.
Following these accusations, the Corps issued a statement commenting that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District fully considered all comments on the Jacksonville Harbor Project during the study planning phase.
“This congressionally authorized project was extensively studied and modeled, and rigorously peer-reviewed by internal and external experts,” said Project Manager Jason Harrah. “Based on certified Corps of Engineers models and other relevant information, deepening the St. Johns River is projected to have a positive economic benefit and only minor environmental effects.”
“We’re confident the risk of unforeseen environmental impact is extremely low, and we will monitor and reevaluate, if appropriate, as new information becomes available. In the meantime, we’ll continue to press forward with the pre-construction, engineering and design work.” added Harrah.