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Advocate — and vote — for clean water

By Staff | Aug 27, 2021

To the editor:

It was good to see the Chamber of Commerce weigh in on the side of clean water for St. Lucie River and estuary in last week’s Breeze. Lee County Commissioner Kevin Ruane and Donna Germain of the chamber both suggested further email support for clean water be directed to the Army Corps of Engineers. Unfortunately they both identified a colonel who has now retired, and no longer in a position to act, therefore not likely to be of any use in reversing his own handiwork. Lt. Gen Scott Spellmon is the honcho of the Army Corps of Engineers. Were he inclined, he could set aside the command of colonel. Booth (the ACE person currently in charge of overseeing the pollution of Lake Okeechobee and scheduling the discharge of toxins to the river). To demand the reversal of the LOSOM plan, the Lt. General can be contacted at Scott.a.Spellmon@mail.mil.

The military is notoriously slow to admit incompetence, and in fairness, more blame for the problem of our water lies with corporate polluters and their paid Congressional and Tallahassee hacks. Nonetheless it will do no harm to contact Spellmon and demand that the LOSOM plan be discarded. If it is not, our community is scheduled to absorb Lake O water as virtually all scheduled discharges are planned to be sent to the Caloosahatchee from the lake for the next 10 years.

But politicians are in a position to change this military course. Gov. DeSantis has been busy campaigning for poor hygiene, and bragging about the measly 2% of lake water sent south to the Everglades. He is up for election next year. If you plan to vote as though you continue to want to be able to drink water and breath air, you should warn him that he will lose your vote if his behavior does not change. As Commissioner Ruane pointed out MUCH MORE needs to be done to send more water to the Everglades. But certainly much less toxic water should come our way. We are not 100% to blame, and should not receive 100% of all toxic discharges.

The Commander in Chief is President Joe Biden, and he can be emailed at the White House. Demand clean water. Demand the EPA be directed to spend superfund monies to clean the lake. Demand the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan monies from former Senator Nelson’s legislation be released. Demand DeSantis meet the Florida share of cost. Vote next election as though you want to be able to continue to have a habitable home on the west side of Florida. Your Congressperson (Donalds) and governor favor St. Lucie. So does the LOSOM plan. While Congressperson Mast has won clean water for his constituency, Donalds has voted to throw his constituency under the bus. If St. Lucie gets no discharge, ipso facto we will get 100% of all discharges. It is not until 10 years from now that the storage units to clean and send water south will be completed. It is impossible to believe that this community can survive 10 years of pounding poison down the river. If you are planning to act, act accordingly.

Ellen Starbird

Cape Coral