Using best management practices (BMPS) to stay in business-a political primer

Erica Marie Santella

Abstract


Although new to the Green Industries, BMPs are an established concept for Florida agricultural industries, including citrus, cow/calf, and silviculture. The overall goal of any BMP is to provide guidelines to conserve and protect Florida's water. The expectation of the industry was less need for local fertilizer ordinances, which are becoming more common. All stakeholders had be part of the process for the BMP document to be accepted and useful. Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs), are being set for each level of impairment, and the first one reviewed for turfgrass was phosphorus. From that, grew the BMPs for Green Industries'. Groups that participated in the writing included: Department of Agriculture, Department of Environmental Protection, several water management districts, University of Florida IFAS, Department of Community Affairs, and industry. The first publication of this living document was both time consuming and expanded the point of views of all participants. Not only was new information shared and accepted but the group eventually came to agreements or compromises on all parts of the manual. There are several important groups that now need to be educated: the industry itself, the clients who use landscaping services (including property managers), city and county governments, and the general public. The most difficult support to gain has been local governments. Too often, personal appearances before local boards is required to get acceptance of the State Green Industries' Best Management Practices.

Keywords


Green Industries; TMDL; Department of Agriculture; Environmental Protection; IFAS; Community Affairs

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283