Five first-magnitude springs (Silver Springs, Rainbow, Silver Glen, Volusia Blue and Alexander).
Major industry (tourism, health care, aerospace, defense, shipping, manufacturing).
North America's most diverse estuary (Indian River Lagoon).
The Central District implements environmental regulatory programs regarding air, water, waste, wetlands and state lands. The district's primary functions are permitting, compliance assistance, outreach and enforcement.
Meet the Director
Aaron Watkins, Director, Central District
Aaron has been with the Central District for more than 20 years and has served in many positions, including environmental specialist, issuing permits in the Submerged Lands & Environmental Resource Coordination program, environmental manager and as the Central District's assistant director. Aaron was honored with a DEP Star Award and was recognized for building regulatory partnership initiatives and serving the residents of Florida.
Prior to his work with the department, Aaron worked with the Environmental Protection Agency in the Oil Spill SPCC Compliance program where he assisted with cleanup efforts, including monitoring, research, analysis and recommendations. Aaron is a graduate of the Florida Institute of Technology, where he earned degrees in Biological Oceanography and Chemical Oceanography.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the state’s lead agency for environmental management and stewardship – protecting our air, water and land. The vision of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection is to create strong community partnerships, safeguard Florida’s natural resources and enhance its ecosystems.