Trust in the DEP to Protect the Santa Fe River — or the EPA?

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Jon Steverson, head of FDEP

The Gainesville Sun published an editorial Sunday, June 7, 2015 called “Gutting the EPA.”  The theme of the article is about taking funds from the EPA and giving them to the individual states to use, because the states make better use of them than the national protection agency.   This idea came from GOP presidential candidate Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who spoke at Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s economic summit last week in Orlando.

Walker’s rationale is that the states are “…much more effective, much more efficient and certainly much more accountable at the state and local level than they are in Washington.”

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Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker

The editorial then proceeds to outline Gov. Scott’s actions and inactions to show why Gov. Walker’s idea does not apply to Florida.  There is a long list.

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Gina McCarthy Administrator for the EPA

During Scott’s time in office, the DEP has severely cut funding for environmental protection, water management districts, fired long-time, competent employees of  protection agencies,  advocated timber and cattle industries within state parks,  allowed further degradation of our  aquifer and springs, denied the existence of climate change and failed to provide a long-range plan to deal with it, failed to curb carbon emissions, and fought the EPA’s Clean Water Act to protect water resources.

Under Gov. Scott, his Public Service Commission appointees encourage and advocate the needless and dangerous Sabal Trail pipeline even though there seems a good chance its product will be exported.  Under Gov. Scott, the Florida DEP encourages and promotes fracking in the state.

Which leads us to another topic involving the EPA, but which must be dealt with in another post.  This is the EPA’s study called Draft Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing for Oil and Gas on Drinking Water Resources  along with nine final peer-reviewed EPA technical reports completed as part of the study.  This is a Congress-inspired study begun in 2010 which, along with it’s SAB or Science Advisory Board sounds like something some of our congressmen who work for the petroleum industry might promote, inspire or conspire.

So it sounds as if we should not put our trust in the EPA either.

If you missed the first link above, you can read the Sun’s excellent editorial here.  OSFR is grateful to Nathan Crabbe and the Sun for permission to reprint their editorials in their entierty.

This post rendered with LFS
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