Boats at Wakulla Springs Get Eco-Upgrade

By: Eyewitness News Email
By: Eyewitness News Email

Wakulla County, Florida- July 12, 2012

The fleet of boats taking visitors down the Wakulla River has always given a rare look at the unspoiled beauty of the environment.
Now they're becoming almost entirely environmentally friendly, giving nature-lovers more reasons to smile.

Said Pete Scalco: "Folks understand it's good for the environment. They're seeing more wildlife because it's a quieter ride. And it gives us great pride to know we are working under alternative energy."
Six of the fleet's eight boats use eco-friendly motors, including the Alligator, which runs on solar panels mounted on the roof.
It's a far cry from the large out-board motors river boat captains were used to.

"I was skeptical at first because I was used to the power of the gas motors. I prefer these to the gas going down the river because they're quiet and easy to maneuver" said Rich Robenhurst.

Twenty thousand dollars worth of solar panels were donated by FSU for use on the boat, with another ten thousand being used for installation.

According to park rangers, a small price to pay for the enjoyment of their visitors.

And soon they hope all their boats will provide a better cruising experience.

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