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PENDING ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECOLOGICAL DISASTER

 
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radiant
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Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 216
Location: Bahamas

PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 2010 3:25 pm    Post subject: PENDING ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECOLOGICAL DISASTER Reply with quote

To those of you that have been following, and perhaps with super glue-like interest the BP oil spill that has done unimaginable damage to the gulf coast states of the U. S. A., and now has begun to impact negatively the white sandy beaches of the western coast of Florida, I wish to invite you to a discussion that presumes that the eastern coast of Florida and The Bahamas will have to deal with this disaster as well.

My hope is that we may provide suggestions and solutions even that would avert an all out disaster given our dependence upon tourism, and protect to a great degree our third major industry of agriculture; in this particular case I'm referring to fisheries. I suspect that since the U. S. A. did not prevent this oil spill from destroying so much of its own coastal lands, that we as a much smaller nation are in an even greater predicament than anyone else given the present economic climate, and the fact that we are not a major producing country of raw materials and/or other coveted resources that have the potential to fuel our economy beyond tourism and those things that may be directly related to tourism.

The present circumstances should be of grave concern to each Bahamian and/or those residing within our boarders as annual or permanent residents. Theres seem to be some that have left the handling of this catastrophe completely up to the "scientists" that created this problem in the first place, and in our case, to central government that are waiting for the scientists to effectively deal with the issue at hand. I propose a proactive stance on this matter since it appears that dealing with oil on our pristine beaches may only be a matter of time - and a short time at that. Just a week to two weeks ago the local authorities on the western coast of Florida were running ads worth millions of dollars telling many tourists that the oil was not affecting theirs shores and it was therefore safe to visit rather than cancel vacation trips. Now the message is quite different. How soon might it be before we must deal with the possible reality of a crushed tourist industry, and for how long?

I have several suggestions as to what we should be doing NOW rather than later. Albeit, all of the suggestions I will put forth did not originate with me, but are believed to be workable and wise.

Firstly then, as I watched on national television, the crawfish, and any other season that may presently be closed should be immediately or as soon as possible re-opened allowing fishermen to harvest as much as they can. I wish to take this further by suggesting that these fishermen should also be required to provide a particular verifiable quota of their catch to government for both a nursery and preservation on ice.

Secondly, with regard to a nursery, many years ago the Chinese attempted a fish farm in Nassau Village of Soldier Road that eventually closed down. It is still a good idea to pursue that idea on land, or by taking certain steps to create a protected nursery in certain islands that have lakes fed by the ocean. One example of such a lake is right here in George Town, Exuma Bahamas. We have for a long time as a nation sought to protect our national sea park, and now more than ever we must take drastic steps to do so in light of the raging oil spill.

Thirdly, local governments across the country should not wait on central government to meet this impending disaster head on. Bahamians in general are boaters. Exuma, Abaco, Bimini and I believe several others are great boating communities. Local government must cultivate quickly the interest of our boaters and harness their power, force, and abilities in putting them on the front line utilizing precautionary measures miles out to sea where our territorial waters begin.

Fourthly, our Royal Bahamas Defense Force (R. B. D. F.) should be place on the front lines to provide fishermen with whatever assistance they may require to avert and/or minimize this impending disaster. They cannot do this alone and police our waters.

Fifthly, to assist boaters in this great effort, the public and private sectors along with the general public should provide funding through donations to equip our fishermen with the necessary training even if training must be crash courses considering how quickly the oil spill is spreading. Later, we can be among those seeking compensation in damages and expended resources for a catastrophe we did not create nor had any control over. But now, we must quickly seek to minimize the negative impact and other possible fallouts from this disaster.

Sixthly, funding may be provided through church, civic, government organizations, and through taking to the streets as we so often do for other worthwhile causes that require more funding than a single organization may be able to provide on its own.

While our national debt service ration stands at 46.6% it is my belief that if we could raise some $50 million dollars locally, we could then go to an international agency and ask them not only to match but double in donations our figure and find them disposed to do so considering our delicate and unique situation. Failing that we could go to our local banks and borrow twice that amount. Yes this would further increase our debts even more significantly immediately and even over time. But, I ask you, what is the lesser of two evils - "Wait and see if we will be rescued and not only cripple but quite possibly plunge our nation into almost certain and unimaginable financial, environmental and ecological woes for decades to come without a sustainable means to address it?" or " Bite the financial bullet and do all that we can to avert or minimize this calamity over a shorter period of time?"

Admittedly, I don't have or know all of the answers, and someone else seeing this post may see short-sights that I don't, but whatever the case we need a serious discussion with plausible solutions that can be effectively done in the shortest possible time. So please, provide your input and possible solutions. Talk to and with your representatives, community and church leaders. For our sakes, let us not politicize this issue. Our entire lively hood, way of life, and future are all at stake and despite one's position on a national lottery, we cannot gamble with this!
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radiant
Premium Member


Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 216
Location: Bahamas

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 2:33 pm    Post subject: Pending Environmental and Ecological Disaster Reply with quote

There is one thing that was suggested to me, and it is that instead of allowing fishermen to go out and harvest fish, lobster, and whatever other seafoods there might be for preservation and a nursery, that a specified and government monitored group of fishermen should be given this task so as to ensure transparency and fidelity in this most serious issue. I would venture to suggest that a non profit group be selected to monitor this venture since there is only so much government can do, and that the non-profit group be funded by the funds collected from proposed donations mentioned in this article/blog.

Even if this disaster were to be averted, it is believed that the measures suggested in this article still be followed so as to minimize any future risks to our already vulnerable environment and economy.
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radiant
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Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 216
Location: Bahamas

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have a look at http://reearth.org/?p=709#comments It surprising to me that there doesn't appear to be discussions (town meetings and/or internet chat rooms and blogs) on this very important issue. It surprises me that there isn't even discussion about this right here on this site. Are we not concerned about the possible impact on our way of life if this oil spill reaches Bahamian waters?
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radiant
Premium Member


Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 216
Location: Bahamas

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:19 am    Post subject: ARE YOU CONCERNED NOW? OIL SPILL BAHAMAS Reply with quote

By SETH BORENSTEIN and HARRY R. WEBER, Associated Press Writers 50 mins ago

HOUSTON With each new look by scientists, the oil spill just keeps looking worse.
New figures for the blown-out well at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico show the amount of oil spewing may have been up to twice as much as previously thought, according to scientists consulting with the federal government.
That could mean 42 million gallons to more than 100 million gallons of oil have already fouled the Gulf's fragile waters, affecting people who live, work and play along the coast from Louisiana to Florida and perhaps beyond.
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