Right in the midst of Fourth of July celebrations, folks near the Florida Treasure Coast are complaining about a tuft of green slime festering the local vicinity for days now. Today on July 6, 2016; authorities have declared a state of emergency, while this toxic bloom of algae is dealt with once and for all.
Governor Rick Scott described the mass scale unexpected algae bloom as “rancid” and “guacamole thick”. Researchers believe that algae blooms occur due to toxic waste piling up underwater in form of containers and garbage discards performed by heavy industries. As a matter of fact, several industries, pile up their waste material and unwanted chemicals in so-called “sealed” barrels and dispose them in water afterward, believing in the spirit of environmental friendliness and good business ethics.
What happens over the years is that corrosion and water pressure take a toll on these containers/ barrels, eventually causing them to rupture and leak. Not only does this phenomenon cause a life threatening risk to endangered aquatic life, but also to coast side residents who thrive on using “purified” water during their day to day chores.
As a result of this algae bloom, local residents in Florida are complaining about a nauseous stench, a series of headaches, respiratory problems and skin rashes. Authorities have advised rigorous use of face masks and a precautionary measure against exposure to these sludgy water pockets as much as possible.
Investigators have traced the origin of this algae bloom to Lake Okeechobee, the entire lake is contaminated as a result of agricultural pollutants from farms surrounding the area. As part of the safety measure, Army Corp has installed blockages to barricade water flow downstream. Though it is not a permanent solution, the measure itself has reduced in water flow/ current effectively.
During a press conference, a Florida oceanographer said, “They, as in the state and federal government, say that they can’t send the water south, but they can. This is an atrocity that they are allowed t continue in the name of agriculture.”
So far, in terms of maintaining health standards to a minimum satisfactory level, 2016 has been a challenging year for Florida’s regulatory authorities. Instead of providing a safe haven to local residents, individuals and agriculture industry lobbyists, are bankrolling their resources to “help” authorities turn a blind eye towards these alarming issues.
Colonel. Jason Kirk, Commander in Jacksonville Florida Army Corps said, “Our water managers have dealt with such large quantities of rain and runoff entering the lake that it would cover the entire state of Delaware in two feet of water.” The question, however, still looms as to how much longer the residents will have to suffer for the mistakes of others at the top.