The water problems in South Florida, as well as state-wide, have prompted the following article in the Sarasota Herald Tribune. The author expresses concern that those in charge are not doing anything, and says it is time for citizens to demand action. He also suggests that we contact our elected representatives at all levels of government.
These ideas are good, but we need strong action. Our do-nothing leaders must be voted out, and the voters have the responsibility to carefully scrutinize candidates to see where they stand on water, and to demand the issue be addressed.
Our leaders are cheating us and they are allowing our resources to go to ruin. Some are intentionally selling our resources to industry while taking huge bribes. Others are uncaring and ignorant of the issues. There are no excuses.
We also need people like Capt. Zacharias multiplied by the thousands to have our voices heard.
Comments by OSFR historian Jim Tatum.
-A river is like a life: once taken, it cannot be brought back-
State of state’s water a concern
Clear springs, a pristine aquifer and healthy surface water is the lifeblood of Florida
Much has been said about water quality issues lately from across the state. The Herald-Tribune reprinted an editorial from the Daytona Beach-News Journal addressing ongoing problems with local, once-pristine, springs. Several letters to the editor have opined over the horrible situation occurring once again this year in Lake Okeechobee. The massive bloom of blue-green algae is festering in the Big O and will once again cause devastating effects once the summer rains really set in.
The foul mess has eventually made it to both coasts for several years, causing unbelievable damage to ecosystems and the economies of those relying on healthy, productive rivers and estuaries all along the way. The same nutrient overload causing the algae blooms is also exacerbating red tide once it reaches the coast.
Of greatest concern locally is the discharge from the lake into the Caloosahatchee River which winds west to Charlotte Harbor and Pine Island sound. The estuary there has barely recovered from last year’s episode and it is set to begin again.
What is most disconcerting is the seeming lack of concern exhibited by those in charge of doing something about the problem. Both the state and federal officials continue to point fingers at each other rather than acting. The feds will tell you that water quality is a state issue and the state will retort saying the feds are not doing enough to fully implement the Everglades Restoration.
In the meantime problems continue to fester and the citizens of this state need to demand action on water quality issues. Clear springs, a pristine aquifer and healthy surface water is the lifeblood of Florida and is nothing to trifle with.
Please, if you agree with this premise, contact your elected representatives at all levels of government and demand action to correct these issues. There is so much at stake here. The upcoming mid-term elections are sure to be a watershed event which could go either way. Let your elected officials know that the health of Florida’s water wealth is far more essential than any one political ideology.