RE: global warming and sea level rise

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Wed Jul 25 2001 - 07:50:04 MDT

Spike Jones wrote,
> I suspect that this issue is even more mired in politics than is
> the rising sea level notion. I have heard people say that we have
> destroyed the atmosphere and polluted the ocean, etc, but I can
> still breathe just fine, and I have eaten fish from the sea for many
> years, and I can tell no difference in their taste.


I can't believe you say this. Here in Florida we sometimes have pollution
problems where we have to shut down the beaches. We have tar balls wash up
on shore. We have bacteria blooms. We have fish kills. It is the ocean
equivalent of bad air days. Sometimes the pollution gets so bad that it
starts killing things in the water, and they patrol the beach to keep humans
from going in. These can be directly traced back to petroleum products,
sewage streams, fertilizer runoff or cruise ship dumping. There is a reason
that Jeb Bush doesn't want oil drilling of Florida's coast. We are already
seeing the problems with pollution. As someone who has grown up in Florida
and see these things, I can't imagine someone dismissing the concept of
ocean pollution.

By the way, the reason the fish tastes the same is that we shut down Florida
waters for fishing when bacteria or heavy metals get too high. We have
regular patrols that measure contaminants in water and open/close areas as
pollution levels change. In the water-management offices, there are whole
maps showing current pollution levels. The green areas of safety and the
red areas of contamination move around over the weeks like a weather map.
We have had entire seasons of fishing or clamming canceled in various
counties due to sustained pollution levels. We have state officers who
trace the pollutants back to the source, fine the company until they stop
it, and then monitor the polluted area for a few months or years until they
can open it up again. We didn't have to do this when I was a kid.

I don't want anyone to think that I am anti-technology. I am very
pro-technology. However, we must be realistic. Air pollution and water
pollution really do exist. They are not imaginary phenomenon or
conspiracies cooked up by the liberal left.

Harvey Newstrom <> <>

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