Planning to move to Hardee County? Looking for a job that isn’t mine related? Or maybe you have a small business searching for a home? Well, let’s hope you don’t go to Wikipedia to find out about the county you plan to invest in. Wikipedia is one of the top 5 websites on the internet. If you type Hardee County, FL into a Wikipedia search and scroll down to the Geography section, this is what you will currently find:
“According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 638 square miles (1,650 km2), of which 638 square miles (1,650 km2) is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km2) (%) is water.”
“Hardee County is located in what is known as the “Bone Valley” which contains most of North America’s phosphate deposits and a large portion of the world’s deposits. Phosphate is mined in large open pit mines with massive settling ponds that contain many harmful byproducts of the mining process and its disposal and use are restricted thus leaving the settling ponds in place indefinitely and rendering the land unfit for agriculture The Mosaic company currently owns all mining land in Hardee County with around 10,000 acres near Fort Green and is proposing an expansion of around 27,000 acres in a new mine near Ona, FL. There is much controversy over the mining practice, the rezoning and conversion of agricultural land into open pit mines. Land is “reclaimed” after mining but leaves areas of mostly artificially created lakes and wetlands in addition to the slightly poisonous and radioactive settling ponds. The proposed Ona mine would surround Horse Creek, a tributary to the Peace River, thus threatening the very pristine and largely untouched natural waterway as well as the Peace River watershed.”
Well now, that sounds like just the place to raise a family or start a business. With all the beautiful, untainted areas of Florida to choose from, why would anyone want to move here? The reality is this is a beautiful area with lots of great people. Sadly, the very thing that should draw people here, the land and the water, are being destroyed at an alarming rate.
A lot of mining has already gone on and the Ona mine will be immense . Can it be stopped before it’s too late? Can the new mine overlay on the east side be prevented? Get involved and do what you can to stop this madness.