Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Toxic Algae Bloom spreads into race for Florida Governor … by gimleteye

Florida's water quality ailments have been piling up for decades. They are principally the result of blame-shifting by large polluters -- including Big Sugar -- whose domination of water resources have lead to gross imbalances in the natural filtering processes that not so long ago gave Floridians for free, the highest quality fresh water in the United States.

When he came to office three and a half years ago, all Rick Scott knew about water quality was what he could see through the small port windows of his private jet at 30,000 feet. Today, even Gov. Scott could make out the massive toxic algae bloom about to kiss the tourism industry and real estate and people living along the state's southwest coast.

It might happen just in time for voters to focus on the November elections, Rick Scott v. Charlie Crist.

If the toxic algae bloom, with millions of dead fish, foul odors, and warning signs don't get voters attention, maybe difficulty breathing will.

For voters on the east coast of Florida, there is a new report that residents eating fish regularly from the Indian River Lagoon are four times as likely to have elevated levels of toxic mercury. In South Miami Dade County, voters could ask what sort of bacteria are clogging the cooling canals of two nuclear power plants operated by Florida Power and Light and whether that algae bloom is causing water quality problems in Biscayne National Park, but answers are a state secret.

Public officials are falling all over themselves trying to portray these problems as "naturally occurring events", although in the case of Turkey Point it's hard to describe the water quality problems as anything other than a ring from Dante's Inferno.

Miami-Dade county commissioner Lynda Bell actually said, "take a spoon and dig dirt anywhere in the county and you will find arsenic."

For public officials, if the state's water quality disasters are not naturally occurring, it's China's fault.

That is what powers-that-be have been saying for years about toxic mercury, without venturing to explain why exactly the worst hot spots for mercury in Florida are right at the bottom of canals spilling polluted water off Big Sugar's farms into the Everglades. If it is China's fault, why are there hotspots where you dump, Mr. Big Sugar?

Did US Sugar officials discuss mercury contamination with Gov. Rick Scott and top GOP legislators on those all-expense paid hunting trips to the King Ranch in Texas? Or maybe they just toasted dim-witted Florida voters.


Anonymous said...

Big Sugar is destroying the state, every corner of the state and its politics, yet environmentalists continue to buy sugar and products containing Big Sugars' sugar!

Why should anything change if consumers do not care?

BOYCOTT Big Sugar and products that have its sugar!

Here are Apps to start Boycotts!

Caffeine Clicks said...

I was just talking about this the other day. This is one of the most important issues concerning Florida and it barely gets any media coverage. The issues at Turkey Point and their consequences are absolutely frightening.

Anonymous said...

Please let your readers know how Charlie Crist addressed this problem during the previous four years.

miles said...

Well, for starters, Charlie didn't gut the regulatory agencies responsible for protecting our water supply.
Charlie didn't fire those people who were knowledgeable and experienced on the subject and replace them w/political cronies.