Sierra Club opposes CCA’s proposed immigration prison in Southwest Ranches
The Broward Group of the Sierra Club has passed a resolution (see below) opposing construction of a 1,500 bed detention facility by Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) in the Town of Southwest Ranches in western Broward County. The center would be run under the auspices of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which has yet to award a contract to CCA for this project.
The Sierra Club objects to the proposed facility because it would draw excessive amounts of water from the Biscayne Aquifer – approximately 180,000 gallons per day – at a time when the regional water supply is already strained by existing consumption and changes in rainfall patterns. The facility would also contribute to Broward County’s existing, and still completely unresolved, waste water disposal problem. Located only about a mile from the edge of Broward’s Everglades, the project would further degrade the gateway to what remains of Broward County’s natural areas – even while the County plans on taking control of the nearby Everglades Holiday Park for the purpose of expanded ecotourism.
“Building a large structure that will involve intensive water use, when water supplies are already overtaxed, and building it along the perimeter of development in Broward County, in close proximity to the Everglades, will greatly harm Broward’s residents and ecology”, said Mara Shlackman, Chair of the Broward Sierra Club.
“A massive structure of this size has no business being built in this location. The more humans encroach on the Everglades, the less open space remains for people and wildlife. Buffer zones of lighter development around protected public lands are essential”, said Judy Kuchta, who regularly leads outings into the Everglades for the group.