Since 1982, Broward County has created over 150 artificial reefs off our shores. The reefs, which are designed to create new stable substrate, are constructed using three basic materials: concrete, steel, or limestone boulders. Therefore, artificial reefs can utilize environmentally suitable objects: ships, barges, oil rigs, concrete culverts, engineered concrete modules, or sculptures. These materials are placed at various depths where they quickly become habitat for a large number of marine organisms. Through the artificial reef program, the County is not only creating additional habitat for various marine organisms and fish, but are also protecting the reefs as boat anchors and scuba divers can cause physical damage to natural reefs by breaking coral or "uprooting" other attached marine animals. In other words, artificial reefs provide some relief from human-caused reef stressors.
The Artificial Reef Program provides benefits to our economy as well as our environment. Scuba divers travel around the world to explore and experience diving artificial reefs in many locations. Broward County has remained on the front lines as one of the best destinations worldwide for artificial reef exploration. In a socioeconomic study from June 2000 to May 2001, Broward County attracted almost 4 million users of artificial reefs, in which over 3 million were scuba divers. The same study concluded that in economic contributions, artificial reefs in Broward County generated $961 million in annual sales, $502 million in income and 17,000 full- and part-time jobs.
The Program relies on outside funding to create or enhance our underwater habitat. Broward County is the permit holder for artificial reef construction in designated areas and EPCRD has the experience and expertise to advise, guide, and create a successful project. Investors interested in creating, sponsoring and donating to the construction of an artificial reef in Broward County can email here to communicate with a program manager.
Broward County’s newest artificial reefs:
|December 14, 2020||Lady Luck - Treasure Chest||1 aluminum treasure chest sculpture installed on the bridge balcony, port-side||80 feet||Pompano Beach||N 26° 13.807 W 80 03.807|
|June 16, 2020||Lady Luck - Seahorses||2 steel seahorse sculptures installed on bow of the ship||94 feet||Pompano Beach||N 26° 13.807 W 80° 03.807|
|April 29, 2020|
April 30, 2020
|John Michael Baker Memorial Reef|
Phase II and III
|11 concrete structures Phase II|
14 concrete structures Phase III
|70 feet||Fort Lauderdale||N 26° 09.496 W 80° 04.731|
|August 14. 2018||John Michael Baker Memorial Reef||12 concrete structures||70 feet||Fort Lauderdale||N 26° 09.482 W 80° 04.720|
|August 7, 2018||John Michael Baker Fishing Reef||570 tons of concrete material||150 feet||Fort Lauderdale||N 26° 09.457 W 80° 04.134|
|August 19, 2017||Okinawa||107 ft. long tugboat||70 feet||Pompano Beach||N 26° 13.9879 W 80° 04.215|
|September 28, 2016||Mt. Deerfield II||510 tons of limestone boulders||70 feet ||Deerfield Beach||N 26° 19.065 W 80° 03.720|
|July 23, 2016||Lady Luck||324 ft. long tanker ship||130 feet||Pompano Beach||N 26° 13.807 W 80° 03.807|
Not all artificial reefs are constructed within the maximum recreational depth limit. Scuba dive responsibly and conservatively, stay within your certification limits, follow proper safety protocols, plan dives accordingly and dive the plans.
Broward County assumes no responsibility for the use of artificial reefs.