CHNEP Charlotte Harbor Watershed Summits

Sharing Research

The Charlotte Harbor National Estuary Program (CHNEP) is a partnership to protect the natural environment of Florida from Venice to Bonita Springs to Winter Haven. The CHNEP hosts the Charlotte Harbor Watershed Summit every three years to learn about current research and restoration efforts and critical environmental issues affecting the Charlotte Harbor watershed. Summits are important in the CHNEP process of bringing public and private stakeholders together.

The CHNEP has also held Summits in 1997, 2002, 2005, 2008, 2011 and 2014. The CHNEP, using a cooperative decision-making process based on sound science, developed a Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP) that identifies the region’s priority environmental issues – water quality, hydrology, habitat loss and stewardship – and actions to solve them. When the CCMP was completed and accepted in 2001, it marked the beginning of action to restore and protect the estuary and its watershed.

The Summits are only possible because of those who are willing to share their expertise and research findings, our partners and sponsors. Because of the support of CHNEP’s financial partners and event sponsors, it has been free to attend.

The CHNEP is a partnership of citizens, elected officials, resource managers and commercial and recreational resource users working to improve the natural environment of Florida from Venice to Bonita Springs to Winter Haven. A cooperative decision-making process is used to address diverse resource management concerns in the 4,700-square-mile study area. The CHNEP financial partners are the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Southwest Florida Water Management District, South Florida Water Management District, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Peace River Manasota Regional Water Supply Authority, Southwest Florida Regional Planning Council, the counties of Polk, Sarasota, Manatee, Lee, Charlotte, DeSoto and Hardee, and the cities of Bonita Springs, Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel, Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Punta Gorda, North Port, Venice and Winter Haven.
March 28-30, 2017

The next Charlotte Harbor Watershed Summit is tentatively scheduled for March 28-30, 2017, at the Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center (75 Taylor St., Punta Gorda).

A call for presentations will soon be available.

By November, the Planning Committee anticipates an agenda will be available. Guidance on how to register will be provided on this page. We anticipate the 2017 Summit will again be free to attend. We are hoping to provide lunch to presenters and sponsors but others will be required to purchase lunch at the time of registration. We anticipate the cost will be $15 a day.

Would you please consider financially supporting the 2017 Summit? It’s anticipated that $10,000 needs to be raised — if the 2017 Summit is similar to the 2014 Summit. Sponsor support will be accepted by the Friends of Charlotte Harbor Estuary, Inc., the CHNEP nonprofit arm. Sponsor support will be acknowledged in all materials produced after a pledge is received. The sooner we know your support, the more ways it can be recognized. Knowing how much financial support is available also makes it easier to make decisions on how to proceed. Your sponsor support may be mailed as a check to CHNEP Friends, PO Box 511422, Punta Gorda FL 33951 or sent through PayPal (see

Sponsors, as of June 7, 2016, include Mote Marine Laboratory ($2,000), Southwest Florida Water Management District ($1,000) and Science and Environment Council of Southwest Florida ($250). Any donation of $100 or more will be acknowledged as a sponsor.

Prior Summits

This page will soon include details of past Summits, including PDF files of PowerPoint presentations and videos from the 2014 Summit.