Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at Palmetto's Piney Point facility on Tuesday, April 13.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at Palmetto's Piney Point facility on Tuesday, April 13.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis visited Palmetto's Piney Point facility on Tuesday and announced plans for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to permanently close the site after last week's unprecedented leak. During a press conference at the Piney Point site, DeSantis also announced that $15.4 million of existing DEP funds will be used to to pretreat wastewater for nutrients in order to minimize potential future environmental impacts. The Florida Senate has added $3 million into its proposed 2021-22 budget for cleanup at the site. Officials estimate that full cleanup and closure costs could top $200 million.

Environmental organizations, including Suncoast Waterkeeper and Tampa Bay Waterkeeper, are also calling for the state to establish a commission to examine phosphogypsum stack operations and how best to close them, to totally fund the complete closure of all the Piney Point stacks, to develop a plan to prevent failures at other stacks around the state and more.

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