Monday, November 09, 2015

Remember? Gov. Rick Scott Gives Himself An Environmental Award ... by gimleteye

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is giving himself environmental awards, instructing agency staff to hold their nose and look the other way on climate change, while down in the Florida Keys all the talk is about the stupid hot weather. It is July in November.

No one can remember such hot weather this time of year. Then again, no one can remember voting for Gov. Scott either. "Wasn't me."

Up in the northern part of Florida Bay, an awful algae bloom is brewing. What algae blooms do is kill everything in the water column that can't flee. Pristine wilderness turns into a dead zone; bringing it back takes an act of God. Our friends at sent us a clip of what the water looks like these days: for miles and miles, the bay surface is coated with scum. Scum.

Death on the surface is an indicator of death beneath. Look closely, and it looks like slow-motion, microscopic boiling. A staph infection on the water. What our friends tell us is that beneath the scummy waters that go on for miles and miles and miles, nothing is alive. I knew this area in the 1970s when it was a magnificent tarpon fishery. The bay bottom then was covered in luscious sea grass meadow. The water was crystal clear. I can't forget what Florida Bay was like and, also, I can't forgive ourselves for what it has become. We did this through the mismanagement of Florida's water resources. is dedicated to restoring a semblance of natural flow of clean, fresh water from Lake Okeechobee, where it will eventually run to Florida Bay. The only hope for Florida's bays and estuaries is clean, fresh water in adequate quantities and at the right times of year. How we get from here to there is not a mystery.

For hope to materialize, state government must use Amendment 1 funds, some $20 billion in potential land acquisition money over the next 15 years, to buyout the billionaire sugar farmers who hold the estuaries and Everglades hostage to their profits. There is simply not enough surface wetland area north of the Everglades to hold and cleanse water in sufficient quantities and quality to move toward Florida Bay. Without good water, Florida Bay has turned into a massive septic tank to benefit upstream polluters. The worst? Big Sugar.

In the last session of the Florida legislature, Florida Gov. Rick Scott and future Senate president Joe Negron failed to stand up to Big Sugar, Florida's shadow government.

A GOP majority failed to appropriate moneys that 75 percent of Florida voters chose to allocate to stop the pollution devastating Florida's environment. Big Sugar's message machinery, including the Pravda-like Sunshine State News, is on full spin cycle to wash Big Sugar's claim it is the best steward of Florida's environment.

The environment for which Gov. Rick Scott just gave himself an award. Remember?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great video. Thanks.