Mangroves are the foundation for marine communities.
They are more than just living organisms; they provide valuable protection from erosion, create a buffer against storms, shelter young fish and nesting birds, and gather significant amounts of carbon.
During construction for the International Boat Show, City of Miami workers stripped more than 300 feet of shoreline, which is illegal because a permit is required to tear down endangered species of mangroves.
After the mangroves were cut down by private contractors they claimed they did not know it was illegal to remove mangroves without a permit.
There is an old Latin quote that goes, “Ignorantia juris non excusat.” Which translates to, “Ignorance of the law is inexcusable.”
We agree; those who are unaware of the law cannot escape liability. Having the International Boat Show at the Marine Stadium is an interesting concept; however it is very unfortunate that so many trees will end up cut down, even if by “accident”.
There are invasive mangroves that we are trying to get rid of in other parts of Miami, but how are we letting these native mangroves right outside our school easily be so carelessly destroyed?
Thirty-five percent of mangroves around the world are gone, and because of development in Florida, the mangroves here continue to suffer.
As small as a mangrove may seem, its destruction is representative of a much larger problem, one our generation bears the burden of fixing.
When we look back to this period of American history, we will be remembered both for the technological advancements accomplished by society and the vast destruction inflicted on our planet.