Army Corp (Eng) Needs To Be Temp. Plugged On Oil Prot. Barrier Permit Issues!

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by JimofPennsylvan, Jul 6, 2010.

  1. JimofPennsylvan
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    JimofPennsylvan VIP Member

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    This past saturday the Army Corp of Engineers denied local Louisiana municipalities officials request for permits to build rock jettys across passes for Barataria bay (around New Orleans) to protect against oil from the Deepwater Horizon well. This is an off-the-charts bad decision. The fish nurseries of Barataria Bay are truly some of the most valuable fish nurseries of America especially for shrimp and red fish, authorities shiould be doing everything they can to protect these areas. The Army Corp of Engineers in their denial letter gave as their reasons that if the desired passes are closed off water flow will increase through the other passes to Barataria Bay which could increase water flow into the bay thus causing soil erosion, and moving salt water deeper into the bay thereby possibly causing the same problems local officials are trying to protect against plus there is oil and gas piple lines running through the passes and the Army Corp is afraid the jetty will damage these pipelines. For the latter supposed problem, local officals aren't building a bridge or a building in the pass it is a rock jetty which is not that heavy, the engineers building the jetty can make steel reinforced concrete u-shaped structures that can be placed upside down over the pipes to protect them from the weight of the rocks. As for the water flow and erosion issues, the Army Corp of Engineers is "speculating" that the level of these problems will rise to the level causing significant ecological/environmental problems. In effect what the Army Corp is saying is they are not going to take a risk for, they are not going to stick their neck out for, they don't care that much about these Gulf communities. This is a terrible wrong it just shows that part of our government is broken and needs to be fixed.

    I am not an environmental expert and one doesn't have to be one to know the right thing to do here is. America needs to protect the Gulf Coast from the Gulf oil leak for at tops an eighteen month period, the Gulf oil well leak will likely be plugged in August and worst case scenario by the end of September and within fifteen months from that time the leaked oil will largely have settled to the bottom of the ocean or coastal waterways or been picked up or consumed by these water bodies' environment. Therefore, the rock jettys if they were placed in the Barataria Bay passes would only need to be in existence there for eighteen months and that goes for any oil protection barrier built along the Gulf Coast. Now how much ecological/environmental damage can result from these barriers over eighteen months - not much a reasonable person must conclude! At the end of these eighteen months environmental studies can be performed and if these barriers are causing or will cause significant ecological/environmental damage they can be removed. Don't be surprised if these environmental studies conclude the barriers should stay, that they offer long-term valuable benefits, because with the worlds climate change the Gulf Coast Waters have and will become warmer which will produce stronger hurricances in that hurricane prone region and these barriers will help protect the coast from more severe hurricance flooding it will likely see in the future!

    What America needs is for Congress to get in the fight to protect the Gulf environment from the oil leak, collectively members need to take the reins on some of these issues! The Congressional solution on this barrier/jetty permit issue is real easy. The essence of the solution is sideline the Army Corp of Engineers for two years on permit issues and give the power to the states, the Army Corp in the Barataria permit process and denial demonstrated they don't sufficiently care about the people of the Gulf Coast so Congress should get them out of the matter. The issue of sidelining the Army Corp on these barrier permit issues for two years is easy for Congress, Congress gave them their power they can take it away on certain projects for two years in a bill. Specifically, the Congressional plan should be that a list of barriers to be approved be drawn up from negotiations between the Gulf Coast Governors and Congressional leadership, the Congress in a bill grants these governors the permits to build the barriers and the governors have total and complete authority to build these barriers with no red-tape which is in effect specified in the bill. The issue of how to pay for the barriers is not an issue because BP negligently caused the leak that has caused the need for the barrriers so BP pays for their installation.



    The "real" issue is how to pay for removal of the barriers after the oil pollution danger has passed if that becomes necessary from environmental studies eighteen months from now? It is unjust, unfair, unreasonable to expect or require BP to pay for removal of these barriers if they need to be removed pursuant to the experts because it would have been a wrongful or mistaken decision to install them in the first place and BP shouldn't be required to pay for the American people's mistakes. Nevertheless, the American people should be willing to risk making a mistake and incurring the cost to fix that mistake because the stakes are so big! These Gulf Coast estuaries, marshes and fish nurseries are a precious national treasure we should not be pinching pennies, operating on the cheap in trying to save them from oil contamination. Congressional Leadership that is both parties should come together and agree that protecting this precious Gulf environment is worth risking two billion dollars, and determine how many of these sand berm barriers and rock jetty barriers can be taken down once built for two billion dollars giving priority to the barriers that will be protecting the most valuable water and land resources and approve in a bill the permits for these barriers, and in this bill authorize the two billion be put in an account that will be available for authorities to tap into to pay for removal of barriers if need be - removal of barriers should not be subject to the yearly budget competitions, Congress has set aside money this way many times before it should absolutely do it on this matter and the Congress could put a provision in the bill that if these monies is not dedicated to a planned barrier removal project in ten years these monies go back to the general Federal treasury!
     

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