Stormwater Treatment Areas improve water quality and can serve as wildlife habitat
The Everglades is a low nutrient, or oligotrophic, ecosystem that is susceptible to negative changes when it encounters too many nutrients, such as excessive phosphorus. Stormwater Treatments Areas (STAs) are artificially constructed freshwater marshes. STAs are a major component of Everglades restoration because they remove excess phosphorus in stormwater runoff before it enters the Everglades Protection Area. There are six STAs operating south of Lake Okeechobee near the Everglades Agricultural Area. STA 3/4 is the world's largest man-made wetland, encompassing around 17,000 acres. It has removed over 240 tons of phosphorus since beginning operations in 2004.
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