Our illutrious Governor here in Florida, Rick Scott, is at it again as he finally responds to the rising crescendo of complaints about the green slime covering so much of the shoreline in South Florida. You may recall that we covered the issue several days back on this blog and pointed out that the agricultural pollution of Lake Okeechobee is the source. Everyone here in Florida knows that and we all talk about it, yet the Governor always finds a way to put the blame on someone or something other than his major supporters, in this case the sugar industry, as if he has no clue.
Now let's be clear, the Governor did not start this problem on his watch. It's been going on for many years, but he has known about it and the way the Corps of Engineers draws down the lake whenever the dams become threatened by too much rain which is so common in South Florida. But the Governor has watched the chunky green slime grow while beach communities and tourists fume and until now he has done nothing.
So the Governor has at long last spoken out and conveniently finds someone other than the large agricultural interests of U.S. Sugar to blame. No, it's not the runoff from sugar operations from growing and harvesting to fine production and the nutrients which are dumped into the lake which become aggravated during times of heavy rains in a land of heavy rains. Instead, we find that he is proposing a new plan to replace residential septic systems in the area and create expensive water treatment systems instead. How many individual septic tanks do you think would have to be replaced to be equivalent to the volume of agricultural sewage water found in the piping systems such as the one in the above picture?
Also consider that at the same time Scott and his supporters in the legislature are routinely raising the levels of chemicals and compounds which can be flushed into the watershed, have politicized the water management districts with hacks instead of technical professionals, and push for massive new roadways and towns in rural areas that are needed for water quality maintenance and aquifer recharge. They also routinely give large industrial operations a pass on most pollution abatement programs, making his proposal laughable if it weren't so damaging.
Residential septic tanks are quite efficient when they are maintained and work properly, but Scott's idea would just create another government witch hunt against the good people of Florida who haven't created this situation. It will, however, also grow another golden opportunity for a crony-capitalist business, certainly afforded to a select few with tentacles into the Tallahassee sphere and designed to force small landowners and average citizens to absorb exorbitant cost for something not needed, likely driving many off their property. Come to think of it, with Scott so hell bent on paving over every inch of the state and jamming in more and more cookie cutter developments where rural people currently live, maybe it's just part of his master plan. Maybe we could just call it Scott's plan to transform Old Florida, or something akin to that. Remember, there are no coincidences in today's Florida governing process, but there are serious adverse consequences, both planned and unplanned.
Here's hoping the Florida we love can survive as a livable state until the Governor's term ends in 2018 but, then again, with crony-capitalist operatives and developers constantly scheming to destroy the natural beauty of the Sunshine State and politicians so easily willing to sell their soul for a campaign contribution, we might already by past the point of return. Let's hope not.