Dead zone fromfertilizer still there


May 21, 2010 at 9:37 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

We’ve heard and read so much recently about the oil spill at the British Petroleum well in the Gulf of Mexico that we have forgotten all about another problem along the coast of Louisiana. It is the dead zone produced by fertilizers from farms in the mid-west floating down the Mississippi River.
They deprive our fish of the oxygen needed to live.

Very few restrictions have been placed on those farmers that would effectively eliminate their negligence in letting it get into the river. Our federal government has let farmers on their own to voluntarily restrict the flow of their fertilizers.

It’s time to take more effective action in that respect also.

Preventing fertilizer from entering the river where they can float down to the Gulf to kill fish would be easy to accomplish. But it apparently requires some penalties for farmers who do not do it.

Of course, our major problem now is the oil spill in the Gulf and the problems it could cause. But we cannot forget that farmers up north have no right to endanger our fisheries with their fertilizer.

The inefficiency of our federal bureaucracy was demonstrated this week more than ever before.

Gov. Bobby Jindal asked the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers to permit the restoration of our barrier islands starting immediately to help stop the oil leak that is plaguing coastal Louisiana. They could have given that permit last week which would have allowed an almost immediate effort to block the influx of oil from that leaking well.

As of mid-week, that permit had not been given. Thus we could not do the job that could help save our coast from a devastating invasion of thick oil that could destroy our wetlands and wildlife.

Let’s face it - - the federal government can’t handle such immediate necessities. There has to be a means by which local governments can act on their own and make up for any misdeeds in the future.

It is really time for local and state governments to have more control over what they have to do to protect their shores or any other part of their territories.

It appears that it is impossible for federal agencies to respond the way the people need in situations such as this. When its a local matter that affects the livelihoods of a state’s citizenry, the solution must be left up to there local governments.

Maybe by now the Corps has given the go-ahead. We hope so.
If so, let’s hope we can catch up and restore those barrier islands the way they should be which could have been done long ago. Then we would not have such a problem before us.




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