Congressman Buchanan and Commissioner Van Ostenbridge learn more about Manatee County marine and water protection

WWSB ABC7 News at 6pm
Published: Aug. 23, 2023 at 4:18 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - “There’s nothing more important in the big picture in our region than clean water.” These were the first words from Florida’s 16th District Congressman Vern Buchanan.

Florida Congressman Vern Buchanan along with Manatee County Commissioner Kevin Van Ostenbridge toured the Two Docks Shellfish Facility in Palmetto Wednesday morning.

As someone who grew up with harmful algae, Congressman Buchanan says these efforts are extremely important.

“The bigger picture to me is the water quality because its what we leave our kids. I come from Michigan, came down here in the 80′s. The bottom line is, I remember in Lake Erie you couldn’t swim in the water, if you caught a fish you couldn’t eat the fish. It was pathetic,” says Buchanan.

Aaron Welch III is the founder of Two Docks Shellfish.

He along with Kevin Van Ostenbridge are saying the partnership with the county and his farm will do dividends for the water in our area.

“We’re going to seed millions of clams and oysters in our local waters. A clam is going to filter 10 gallons a day, oysters can do up to 50 gallons a day. Clams literally eat red tide. So these are measurable outcomes with our water quality that were looking to achieve,” says Van Ostenbridge.

With so many benefits to putting these animals in the water, Congressman Buchanan says these efforts now will benefit generations to come.

“I’ve got 9 grandkids under 9 years old. I want to leave the place better for them. And for you and your kids and grandkids, and that’s why were here today,” says Buchanan.