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Biscayne Bay
Photo: Citizen Scientist Project Key Biscayne

By Marlowe Starling, Mongabay

  • A massive fish kill in August 2020 was a red flag that historically troubled Biscayne Bay in Miami had passed a biodiversity health tipping point.
  • Years of scattered efforts and mixed results of various conservation actors working toward the bay’s recovery have begun to fade in favor of more collaborative, inclusive efforts.
  • Scientists and citizens are now focusing their efforts on creative ways to restore biodiversity in Biscayne Bay.

Along the Miami shoreline, luxury high-rises and condominiums run parallel to Biscayne Bay, one of South Florida’s most biodiverse ecosystems, characterized by its once abundant coral reefs, seagrass beds and mangroves.

alt text: Florida: Smiling man in striped shirt raises forefinger in air as man in suit has arm around shoulder. Both are graying with beard and mustache.
Clifford Williams (left) and Nathan Myers leave the Duval County Courthouse in Jacksonville, Fla., after being exonerated. Photo: Innocence Project of Florida

By Claire Goforth

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Two grey-haired men listened silently in Courtroom 505 of the Duval County Courthouse on March 28 as Judge Angela M. Cox uttered the words that they’d waited the better part of 50 years to hear: “The indictments against you have been dismissed and you are free to go.”

After spending more than 42 years in prison for murder and attempted murder, with that pronouncement Nathan Myers and Clifford Williams took their place in Florida history as the first people to be exonerated by a prosecutor-led effort.