August 2, 2008 at 11:34 pm #9927
There are many threats to estuaries like; infilling, shoreline development and marinas, pollution and discharge of sewage.
I am having trouble trying to find information for an essay on the threats of shoreline development, marinas, pollution & discharge of sewage. It would be helpful if anyone can help me with this as i live in New Zealand and need information specific to New Zealand.
If anyone can lead me to a good site or have general knowledge of it, that would be very helpful.
August 3, 2008 at 1:51 am #85354
Another threat to consider is the re-routing of inland waterways. Here in Louisiana, the government got the bright idea about fifty years ago or so to dig a canal connecting the Mississippi with the Atchafalaya River. The result was that much of the Mississippi’s current was diverted down the Atchafalaya, flooding hundreds of square miles of marshlands and, since the Mississippi was no longer carrying as much sediment due to the diverted flow, coastal erosion around the Mississippi delta increased dramatically.
I don’t know if anything like that every happened in New Zealand, or where to look for information if it did.
August 3, 2008 at 5:20 am #85355
You must really love estuaries 🙂
Thanks for the ideas!
August 3, 2008 at 10:07 pm #85363
It helps when you live right in the middle of the largest estuary in North America, and the government seems to make a hobby of figuring out how to destroy it even further.
August 6, 2008 at 3:32 am #85392
Ahh. So what does your govt do (to danger the estuaries) exactly, other than re-routing?
August 7, 2008 at 2:49 am #85405
Funding for conservation is far below what it needs to be. I think I mentioned in the other thread how New Orleans might have been saved from Hurricane Katrina had the saltwater marshes not been so badly destroyed. And of course President Bush (in his infinite wisdom) had the audacity to say on national television that no one could’ve seen this coming. Bull. We who live here have been knowing this would happen for decades, and we’ve been warning Washington that something had to be done. But of course no one listened.
August 7, 2008 at 7:15 am #85409
Do you have conservation groups taking an interest in the situation?
August 7, 2008 at 5:06 pm #85416
We have plenty but the problem is funding. For example, a lot of people here have been trying to persuade the government to expand the levee system along the Mississippi River for as long as I’ve been alive, warning that if nothing was done a major hurricane would cause massive devastation. Yet the government ignored such warnings until after Hurricane Katrina had already flattened New Orleans.
There’s also a lot of interest groups that think it would be a bad idea to try to conserve the environment, and that also complicates matters. Especially considering that politicians don’t usually see things in terms of "good" and "bad" but in terms of "What can get me the most votes?"
August 8, 2008 at 3:59 am #85419
True. We dont have many big problems with the govt here. Wow about the groups that disagree with you, what are their reasons for being against it?
August 8, 2008 at 3:22 pm #85422
Many people are opposed to conservation strictly on a cost basis, and funding is a major problem (and yet the state legislature just recently voted itself a 400% raise; can you say "corruption"?). Other concerns are effects on business and industry, and I’m not too convinced by these. Offshore oil drilling, for example, actually helps the environment here because the underwater structure of the wells provides an excellent environment for marine life. In New Orleans there is an aquarium that has a massive exhibit dedicated to showing how marine organisms utilize oil platforms for their habitat; it’s fascinating. So interestingly oil is one of the few areas where business and environmental concerns go hand-in-hand, hence Bush’s recent decision to lift the ban on drilling in federal waters.
Agriculture is a potential threat, especially as big as the sugar cane industry is around here, but farmers generally don’t intrude into the swamps and marshes since those areas are rarely suitable for agriculture. Sugar cane farming thus doesn’t effect the local environment to any considerable degree.
Hunters are the largest group of conservationists around here, as they have the most contact with the natural environment and also the biggest desire to conserve it. Most of the laws we have protecting the environment were the result of lobbying by hunters.
Perhaps the strangest anti-environmental argument I ever heard was from an evangelical Christian who was convinced that the end of the world and the second coming are definitely going to happen within this century, and his reasoning is that there’s no point trying to protect an environment that’s about to be destroyed anyway. Sadly, evangelicals are a growing force in politics around here.
August 9, 2008 at 1:58 am #85424quote :
This seems like a state issue, why should Californians or New Englanders have to help support out of state problems (Emergencies not included such as Katrina)? In South California there major water supply problems. It is being handled at the state level. Of course there are issues with the colorado river which involves multi-states in which case it becomes a federal issue to arbitrate, but at the end, each state must foot their own bill.
August 9, 2008 at 5:43 am #85425
You are right, each state must foot its own bill. The problem here is that Louisiana politics has a well-deserved reputation for being among the most corrupt in the nation (hence Governor Jindal’s recent ethics reforms). If our state legislature can vote itself a 400% raise but we can’t find enough funding to protect the very soil upon which we live, we have a serious problem.
That said, the federal government is not without its share of blame. After the levees were breeched following Katrina, Army helicopters were dispatched to drop sandbags into the breaches to stop the flooding. They were called off in mid-flight because President Bush didn’t want to spend federal money. I’m sorry, but I think in the given situation, saving lives was much more important than who was paying the chopper pilots’ salaries. The result: New Orleans flooded and lots of people died that could’ve been saved. Thank you, Mr. Bush.
August 9, 2008 at 9:20 am #85431quote :quote :
Your comparing cream corn and peas here. First your talking about estuaries and lack of funding from the government. Then you mention as long as you remember the levee system should have been addressed. (All of which the state government should have been doing something, not the feds).
Then you bring up post Katrina, not fair, as if you note in my first post I mentionedquote :
As I feel in such cases, it is the duty of all Americans to come to the aid of a wounded state.
Blame Bush over what transpired during Katrina if you like, and I will not dispute it as I do not know all the facts, however, I do believe the real blame should be placed on state for not taking preventative measures long before, as I would assume they surely must have known this was a potential disaster.
August 10, 2008 at 2:46 am #85435
haha from what ive heard im not the biggest fan of bush either!
August 10, 2008 at 3:47 am #85440
I won’t disagree that the state should’ve done much more, but as I mentioned previously Louisiana’s political system is among the most corrupt in the country. That said, a lot of conservation projects are administered on a federal level through the Army Corps of Engineers, which requires federal funding. Most parishes in the coastal regions also administer their own conservation projects. So really, it’s a combination of national, state, and local problems.
I was thinking earlier today, one of the problems in this country is that we have too many levels of government, each with all sorts of different agencies, all of them competing for funding. I wonder if there’s a better way to streamline all of this bureaucratic mess.
August 11, 2008 at 5:28 am #85452quote alextemplet:
August 11, 2008 at 1:40 pm #85460
I think increasing voter turnout in Louisiana would first require educating the state. Our public education system is ranked 49th out of all 50 states. I think we gave up decades ago when we decided that as long as we’re better than Mississippi, we’re alright.
I could also rant about the decrepit quality of education in the nation as a whole, but if I do I might accidently shatter my keyboard with too much typing, so I’ll bite my tongue.
As a humurous aside, here’s four very good reasons why the US is the dumbest nation on the planet:
1) We voted for Clinton.
2) We voted for him again.
3) We voted for Bush.
4) We voted for him again.
Need I say more?
August 12, 2008 at 2:14 am #85466AstusAleatorParticipant
I just *almost* applied for a Natural Resource Conservation position in New Orleans, with the federal government. I decided it would be way too depressing and frustrating though.
That whole region is ecologically ****ed. Know what I mean? And without having ever lived there, I know that trying to bring about any worthwhile change would be equivalent to smashing my head against a brick wall.
It’s really sad that we’ve turned one of our biggest ports, and the mouth of our largest river into the nation’s excretory orifice.
August 12, 2008 at 2:58 am #85471quote AstusAleator:
I was thinking about that just the other day, actually, as I was looking at the Mississippi River while visiting New Orleans. I was thinking about the the literal crap that must be flowing down that river. Half the waste of North America, and people down here are dumb enough to swim in it. I guess that explains the atrocious state of our public education!
I probably will end up taking a job in conservation around here. Being as this is my home, I want to try to do what I can and maybe, just maybe, I can stop it from disappearing. Experts currently predict that, with the current rate of erosion, by the time I’m 50, my home town (currently about 80 or so miles from the coast) will be beachfront property.
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