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Water-Related News

Longboat Key plans to plant 8,600 mangroves, part of fix after spill

More than 8,600 mangroves may be planted near Sarasota Bay but not as part of any eco-celebration.

The trees — 4,404 red, 3,485 black and 774 white mangrove trees — would be planted as part of an effort to remedy the destruction resulting from sewage that spilled from a line connected to service Longboat Key in June 2020.

About 14.7 million gallons of raw sewage seeped for days from Longboat Key’s only wastewater line, which runs from the key across the bottom of Sarasota Bay to the mainland and ends at a county treatment facility in Bradenton.

Finding and stopping the leak involved constructing a makeshift road through a mangrove forest on property owned by Long Bar Pointe LLLP development.

A subsequent report identified long-term corrosion as the likely reason for the rupture in the pipeline.

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection reviewed the incident and prepared a proposed consent order with penalties and actions for the town.

After months of consideration, on Feb. 22, Longboat Key commissioners voted unanimously to accept a negotiated order and authorized town manager Tom Harmer to implement its provisions.