Wednesday, February 03, 2016

On the spread of the Zika virus and environmental regulation: four Questions for Republican candidates for president ... by gimleteye

Republican candidates for president are highly motivated by the ideology that there is no -- or only a limited role -- for the government in regulating the environment. The GOP's principal target -- strongly supported by efforts of the Koch Brothers and the Fox News / right wing message machine -- is the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Here are four questions for GOP presidential candidates now that the alarming spread of the Zika virus is on par with media coverage of the GOP presidential popularity contest.

In a short period of weeks, the mosquito borne Zica virus has "explosively" spread through the Americas and into the public consciousness. The virus causes some fetuses to grow micro encephalic brains.

Question 1) The virus is certain to spread into the United States. Do you, GOP candidate, support intervention by federal agencies?

Question 2) If so, please explain why?

Mercury pollution is pervasive in American freshwater wetlands like the Everglades, but it is poorly or lightly regulated by the states. In its toxic form, mercury is a severe threat to fetuses and to brain development in children, like the Zica virus.

Question 3) Do you support intervention by federal agencies to monitor and to regulate drinking water quality -- the main pathway for mercury -- by federal agencies including the US EPA? (In fact, the Republican Congress -- and its supporters in states like Florida including the Chamber of Commerce, Associated Industries of Florida and the Farm Bureau, wage a near-constant campaign against the strengthening for rules and laws by federal agencies to protect our water quality.)

Question 4) If you support a federal role in preventing the spread and the consequences for the Zica virus but not federal responsibility to tighten toxic mercury, monitoring and enforcement of protections for our drinking water supply, please explain why?

1 comment:

Robin said...

Is Rick Scott for real ? He lives a few hours from Miami. Do you think he would like to spend the weekend with his family? NOT!