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Florida Department of Environmental Protection
Water Resource Protection Programs


Florida is rich with fresh and marine water. In addition to its abundant surface water resources, Florida also sits atop the most plentiful freshwater aquifers in the United States, which supply water to hundreds of springs and provide the base flow for many of Florida’s rivers and streams. The state's surface and ground water resources are intimately connected and support our drinking water supplies, agriculture, industry, wildlife habitat, and a thriving recreation-based economy.

Because of the vastness and complexity of Florida's water resources, the Department has organized its responsibilities into four primary areas:


Program Area Responsibility

Water Policy and Ecosystems

  • Office of Water Policy oversees Florida’s five regional water management districts as they implement water supply and water quality protection programs.
  • Office of Ecosystem Projects implements the Department’s technical, planning, and regulatory responsibilities for restoration of the unique South Florida ecosystem, including the Everglades and Lake Okeechobee.
  • Office of Coastal and Aquatic Managed Areas manages more than four million of Florida’s most valuable submerged lands and coastal uplands, including 41 aquatic preserves and, cooperatively with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, three National Estuarine Research Reserves and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.

Water Quality
and Restoration

Suwannee River 

Environmental Assessment and Restoration implements a comprehensive suite of activities, including the establishment of water quality standards, water quality monitoring, determining which waterbodies do not meet standards, and working with local stakeholders to restore them to health based on scientifically-derived restoration targets. It is organized into the following major programs:


Permitting, Compliance
and Enforcement


Water Resource Management regulates coastal construction, mining and minerals extraction, wastewater and stormwater management facilities, public drinking water systems, and activities that alter the flow of surface waters, including wetlands. It is organized into the following major regulatory programs:


Financial Assistance


The Department’s water programs also provide several hundred million dollars each year in loans and grants, primarily to local governments, for the construction of water infrastructure and implementation of urban and agricultural best management practices to restore and protect water resources. See our financial assistance webpage to determine what opportunities might be right for your project.

Florida's Water Management Districts (WMDs) also offer financial assistance for certain kinds of projects and activities:

Go to the ERP Rulemaking homepage.

Quick Links

Blue Green Algae

Desalination in Florida

Emerging Substances of Concern

Florida Water Resources Monitoring Council

National Hydrography Dataset


Operator Certification

PASS - Permit Application Subscription Service

SB 536 Study

Suwannee River Partnership

Water Conservation

Wekiva Study Area

Visit "Florida's Water - Ours to Protect"

Last updated: November 24, 2015

  2600 Blair Stone Road M.S. 3500   Tallahassee, Florida 32399   850-245-8336 (phone) / 850-245-8356 (fax) 
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