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We need a united front

August 8, 2018
Lehigh Acres Citizen

To the editor:

There are simple solutions to the ecological disaster of red tides, and green slime flowing in our state. Before presenting them, observing the facts is essential.

First, dead whales, dead sea turtles, dead manatees, and dead fish washing ashore on our public beaches have the potential to destroy our tourism industry. Second, toxic waste on our beaches, in our canals, and in the sea pose a health risk to our citizens. Third, this is not a quirk of nature. It's man made.

From all that I've read, this disaster is a result of the runoff from fertilizers including those used by the corporations engaged in the sugar industry. Our elected officials are aware of this, but since these corporations are a source of large campaign contributions, they allow these corporations to use the public water ways as their personal sewer pipes.

There are three quick fixes to this problem.

1) Determine which specific fertilizers create this problem, and issue a total ban of them. There are alternatives that don't involve creating toxic waste, and agricultural corporations can use those, even if it results in a lower crop yield.

2) There should be a total ban on allowing corporations to use the public waterways to discharge toxic waste. That's so obvious it shouldn't even have to be mentioned, but our current elected officials have shown they lack the will to take that step, and protecting our tourism industry, and the health of our citizens isn't a priority to them.

3) Stop electing state officials that are willing to allow toxic waste to flow across our state and beaches. It's time for the media to create a list of elected officials that allow this disaster to happen, and publish it, informing voters who the culprits are.

If these three steps are ignored, there will be no other solutions to this serious, and growing disaster, that will have much impact.

Kenny Belford

Cape Coral



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