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Florida Keys Travel Guide

Divers Protect Florida Keys Valuable Coral Reef

Posted: Jan. 2nd, 2013  |  By Michael Pearse
Diving in the keys
PO2 Michael Anderson

While other things may be on your mind as you visit the Florida Keys, always be sure to appreciate the region's coral reef as it is the only living one in the continental United States and provides $2.3 billion annually on top of feeding millions with its fisheries. That is on top of being a gorgeous scuba and snorkel location.

Beneath the blue waters of the Florida Keys, the continental United States’ only living-coral barrier reef stretches for miles. The reef and surrounding waters generate more than $2.3 billion annually for the local economy, create more than 33,000 ocean jobs throughout the Florida Keys and support fisheries that feeds millions.

Regional Diver Locker East divers prepare to conduct an


Regional Diver Locker East divers prepare to conduct an

environmental survey. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Anderson.


Across this economically important area, the Coast Guard maintains 450 buoys, markers and aids to navigation that safely guides water traffic through the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, stretching 2,900 nautical miles from the Dry Tortugas National Park to Fowey Rock near Miami.


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