The federal government is getting rid and restoring about 4,000 miles of Florida beaches and the state is moving forward with plans to begin the process, which could cost as much as $5 billion, according to federal officials.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Tuesday that the agency had designated about 400 of Florida�s 2,500 designated national beaches as a national monument in the state, and will begin to remove about 3,200 of them.
The federal government has declared all Florida� s beaches to be protected, but the process is far from finished.
The process of restoration is slow, and some beaches will remain closed for months, even years, until the federal government completes the work.
The federal and state governments are still working to determine how many beaches will be removed.
But federal officials have identified some of the beaches that need the most restoration work.
Florida�t been as aggressive about restoring its beaches as the rest of the nation, said Jim Sullenberger, assistant secretary for the Interior and Interior Trade, in a press conference Tuesday.
The state is working with a team of contractors to get the rest and we are starting to move into the process.
I think we are on the verge of being able to restore the entire state.
The new protections are expected to cost more than $5.5 billion.
They�ll cost a lot of money.
We are going to have to do it.
We�ll have to spend a lot more than that to do that, said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.
Sullenberg also said the state was going to be moving ahead with plans for a $3.8 billion dredging project to create a beachfront that would bring the bay to about 1,500 feet, and allow visitors to swim and enjoy the waters.
The work is expected to take four to five years.
Satellite imagery shows the dredging of the bay will be a huge undertaking.
The U.S. Geological Survey has estimated that the work could cost $1 billion.
The dredging will also take more than a year, with federal officials expected to work on the site, which will be built in the bay.
It will take months for the project to be finished.
The first dredging site in the Florida bay, known as the Atlantic Coast Restoration Project, is scheduled to open in late July.
The area is known as a popular fishing spot.
Salazar said the government is planning to build another dredging operation that is set to open later this year and is expected cost about $3 billion.