Friday, February 7, 2014

Florida Sues to Stop Clean Up of Chesapeake Bay!! What??

Recently, it seems, Tallahassee republicans, i.e. governor FUBAR Scott and now attorney general Pam Bondi, have been desperately trying to convince you that they have become suddenly enlightened toward the fragility of Florida’s uniquely sensitive natural environment.  (Oh, the glory of it if it were only true!)  But every time we begin to sense some good could be breaking free of the suffocating detritus that otherwise envelops the state’s capital, truth is loosed on the scam and the dream is quickly doused, leaving only the foul smell of ruined hopes.

A clean Chesapeake Bay
is NOT in Florida's best interest.
What ???
Recall the growing number of photo ops involving governor FUBAR and the AG that have been reported celebrating the result of some tax-funded largesse, which they always pronounce proudly (with a straight face even) will have fantastically positive impacts upon the state’s environmental disaster du jour.
When truth leaks free from the controlled environs of our fair capital-of-deceit-and-prevarication, the real direction toward which Florida’s republican leadership is taking the state becomes clear.
Did you read where AG Bondi, surely with the blessing and at the behest of governor FUBAR Scott, has decided that a plan to clean up Chesapeake Bay and improve its decaying water quality is not in the best interest of you and me, and has sued to stop it?  Yes, your governor and your attorney general whom you put into office is spending your money and saying they represent your interest filed a brief Monday with the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Maryland, asking that it overturn a lower federal court ruling upholding the legality of the Chesapeake Bay Clean Water Blueprint.
Chesapeake Bay, ” … is an estuary lying inland from the Atlantic Ocean surrounded by the states of Maryland and Virginia, the largest such body in the US.[2] More than 150 rivers and streams[2] flow into the Bay's 64,299 square miles (166,534 km2) drainage basin, which covers parts of six states (New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia) and the District of Columbia, according to Wikipedia.
Why?  The thing Bondi’s afraid of is the same thing DEP says is going to be the savior of all of Florida’s springs, rivers, and all its water bodies where Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL’s) have been set or will be by DEP, and for good reason.  DEP says a TMDL is:
“ … A scientific determination of the maximum amount of a given pollutant that a surface water can absorb and still meet the water quality standards that protect human health and aquatic life. Water bodies that do not meet water quality standards are identified as "impaired" for the particular pollutants of concern--nutrients, bacteria, mercury, etc.--and TMDLs must be developed, adopted and implemented for those pollutants to reduce pollutants and clean up the water body.
An established TMDL, in other words, is the “line in sand”, the absolute limit beyond which there will be no further despoliation of a water body by a given pollutant.  It is the ultimate tool designed to stop polluters from continuing to add to the demise of a water body.  It is the ultimate protector of the Common that says if the level of a pollutant has reached this specified quantity or amount (insert a specific measurement), none further will be allowed no matter how small.  It is a concept born of the idea that we cannot continue to despoil our earthly nest without the ultimate result, our own demise as a society.
TMDLs are important but basing them upon science and not politics is equally as important if their purpose is not to be corrupted.
Florida’s attempt to stop the establishment of TMDLs on one of the country’s most iconic water bodies is a travesty beyond words.  And, when read in context with the importance TMDLs will hopefully play in the ultimate and final protection of Florida’s own natural systems, it is incredibly disingenuous and, frankly, stupid.
You will not be surprised to know who is behind this anti-Florida insanity.  Think American Farm Bureau and other pro-agriculture and development groups, i.e., big Ag and developers.  Think also that if it’s the national groups there, you can bet the Florida groups here are right behind it as well, including the Florida Chamber, and that’s why Bondi is on board.  Think also, who are among the most zealous polluters of our springs, rivers and aquifers? 
Public Servant

Once again, outrageously, it’s not your interests being served here, it’s special interests indeed. 
Same old song.  And it’s getting very old.
Contact Pamela Jo Bondi now, please.  Tell her how much you believe she’s making a terrible mistake and that the amicus brief she has filed on your behalf should be supportive of setting these limits, not in opposition of them.  You can reach her HERE.

Read the Baltimore Sun's editorial about this matter HERE.
Read the Miami Herald's editorial by Carl Hiaasen HERE


  1. ..., this is excellent, as usual. Nobody says it like you do.

  2. Well said, young man.

  3. My ... you do have a way with words.
    I enjoy your comments . . . Keep ‘em coming

  4. She SIGNED ON to an amicus that many other AG's signed on too as well. She did not create it. By the way... you're article becomes childish when you have to use something like FUBAR (yes, I had to look it up).

    1. Childish? Yes, I suppose so. But if its meant in the military sense as I intended, it's just, perhaps too rough, military humor. I had a flight instructor who named a training flight of four aircraft FUBAR (probably for good reason). Whenever we would check in with Flight Control as FUBAR Flight 1, 2, 3, etc., it always got a humorous comment. Some not so flattering, but always humorous.

      Anyway, AG Bondi should not have "signed on" against what the locals around Chesapeake Bay are trying to accomplish. Her purpose appears only to be patronizing to big ag, the development community and right wing extremists. If she and the governor truly believe this is a states' rights issue, they failed to consider the greater significance it holds to Florida's natural environment. How would Florida feel if Maryland and other states filed some sort of position statement against restoration of the everglades, or restoration of the state's unique artesian springs. TMDL's have been in federal and state law for decades. Concern about how they might be implemented is naive. Florida, i.e., Ms. Bondi, had no business filing anything that suggests Maryland's/EPA's efforts to clean up Chesapeake Bay would have negative impacts on Florida. The efforts should be applauded not opposed. Her filing will do more damage in terms of how Florida can now expect other states might respond to its efforts to seek further federal funding for restoration of The Everglades. It was a very shortsighted and unwise decision by her and the governor and Florida will suffer accordingly. -Sandspur