Brian Lapointe, PhD, esteemed salt and fresh water scientist living part of the time on Big Pine Key in the Florida Keys, sez there is absolutely no way NOAA/Federal Marine Sanctuaries, Central Everglades Planning Projects (CEEP) or any authority/outfit have the technology, proven by field-tests, to clean up the massive amount of dirty (nitrogen-contaminated) water that is proposed to be allowed into the Everglades

EvergladesBrian La Pointe

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This post today is the fourth consecutive post at this website – www.goodmorningfloridakeys.com – spawned from a water quality forum co-hosted about two weeks ago by Last Stand and Everglades Law Center at the Eco-Discovery Center in Key West.

First below this introduction, read my email to Regena, assistant to Assistant Secretary (Civil) of the Army Corps of Engineers Jo-Ellen Darcy, and the two emails included in that email to Regina. That will give you the main theme.

When I spoke with Regena on the telephone, she gave me her direct email address on condition that I not disclose it for all the world to see, because, she said, they did not want to be blasted with emails from all over everywhere. I said I didn’t blame them.

Perhaps not entirely coincidence, Regena told me she has blood relatives living in Alabama, including Birmingham, my hometown.

Then scroll down and read my first email to Regena, and all the emails included.

What little confidence I still had in Last Stand before the water quality forum evaporated at the forum, which I left convinced was a sham, if not an outright fraud. Then, it got worse.

Sloan Bashinsky

From: sloanbashinsky@hotmail.com
To: regena _______@mail.mil
Subject: P.S. RE: Last Stand/Everglades
Date: Thu, 8 May 2014 07:19:02 -0400

Good morning, Regina:

After sending you the material reproduced last below, I wrote to Dr. Brian Lapointe, and he replied.

Not included in any of that, when Brian and I spoke on the telephone the other day, he said the watershed for the Everglades actually begins much farther north than most people believe. Perhaps as far north as the Georgia-Florida line. He said he has been involved in doing water tests which show nitrogen making its way from Tallahassee through underground water caverns into Wakulla Springs, and in similar fashion nitrogen makes its way underground into south Florida.

Not a happy situation.

Thanks for also passing this P.S. along to Assistant Secretary Darcy.

Sloan

From: sloanbashinsky@hotmail.com
To: belapointe@gmail.com
Subject: RE: Last Stand/Everglades
Date: Tue, 6 May 2014 16:26:24 -0400

Thanks, one question:

Do you know if NOAA/Federal Marine Sanctuaries, Central Everglades Planning Projects (CEEP) or any authority/outfit has the technology, proven by field-tests, to clean all the dirty water that is proposed to be allowed into the Everglades, instead of it continuing to be sent into Lake Okeechobee and to the east and west coasts of Florida?

Date: Wed, 7 May 2014 22:01:55 -0400
Subject: Re: Last Stand/Everglades
From: belapointe@gmail.com
To: sloanbashinsky@hotmail.com

Absolutely not. The Lake Okeechobee water would have to move south through the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) where it would become even more polluted, especially by nitrogen.  Because of the high nitrogen to phosphorus ratio of water coming out of the EAA and moving south through either canal flow of the Water Conservation areas, there is no way to remove the nitrogen. The Stormwater Treatment Areas (STAs) remove primarily phosphorus, not nitrogen, and under high flow conditions, they cannot even remove phosphorus adequate to meet the 10 ppb standard set by the Everglades Lawsuit settlement. We are talking about massive quantities of water potentially moving south, millions of acre feet per year, which translates to thousands of tons of nitrogen exported to nitrogen-limited waters in the Florida Bay/Florida Keys region. I pointed all this out over twenty years ago and it was ignored. The powers that be had the best science money could buy. You saw the result of the decision to increase flows from the Everglades between 1991 and 1995  in my talk at the KWCC meeting. It caused irreparable environmental damage to coastal waters of Florida Bay and the Florida Keys (the infamous  “Dead Zone,” thanks Pew Trust) and represents malfeasance/negligence among the agencies involved, especially NOAA/EPA/FKNMS who were charged with protecting the “Sanctuary.”

Hope this helps…

Brian


From: sloanbashinsky@hotmail.com
To: regena________@mail.mil
CC: belapointe@gmail.com
Subject: FW: Last Stand/Everglades
Date: Tue, 6 May 2014 14:05:16 -0400

Hi, Regena -

Thanks for your help passing this Everglades Water Release “minority report” along to Assistant Secretary Darcy.

Beneath this introductory note, which basically covers what I told you on the telephone, is a chain of emails in the reverse time order sent. Start at the bottom with the announcement from Last Stand based in Key West, and read upward. The announcement contains Last Stand’s letter to Ass. Sec. Darcy re the Corp’s recent decline re releasing water back into the Everglades.

Naja, in my reply to Last Stand, is Naja Girard, President of Last Stand, a good friend of mine. Brian Lapointe, PhD is an internally-recognized water scientist, whom I have met and was schooled by somewhat before I got involved in this murky water. Brian lives part-time on Big Pine Key, where the famous key deer headquarter and roam.

I hope Ass. Sec. Darcy will speak with Brian before swallowing hook, line and sinker what she received from Last Stand. Here is Brian’s office phone number: 772-242-2276 He told me this morning that he will be leaving the country soon on a marine environment job of some kind, and will not be gone a long time. All attachments to this forward came with Brian’s email to me this morning. Indication that he knows his stuff.

I tried at the water quality forum to get Billy Causey, PhD, Regional Director of NOAA’s Marine Sanctuaries, who lives on Big Pine Key, and other scientists who spoke, to comprehensively explain the system they intend to use to clean up the dirty water before it is released back into the Everglades. After they heard what I was going after, they did not let me speak again.

Causey said at the forum, if the dirty water is released into the Everglades, it will be cleaned up by the time it reaches Florida Bay. I nearly felt out of my seat. Another scientist later said, dirty water will not be cleaned up by the Everglades; the water has to be cleaned before it reaches the Everglades.

I had tried to persuade Naja to invite Lapointe to the forum. She knew of him, had seen a recent slide and lecture presentation he made to the Key West City Commission, which graphically painted with satellite photos, infra red, I suppose, massive chemical l runoff from the Everglades and South Florida into Florida Bay and down to the Florida Keys and Key West and out to the reef. Devastating.

Causey strongly disagrees with Lapointe, and vice versa. Causey was the reason Last Stand did not invite La Pointe to the water quality forum.

During the forum, it was announced that earlier that same day the Army Corps of Engineers had declined to get involved in sending water back into the Everglades. That was generally taken as terrible news, but I wondered if the Corps knew, or at least suspected, Causey, et. al., simply do not have the ability to clean up the dirty water before it reaches the Everglades. In other words, I wondered if the Corp’s same day decline was, hmmm, an Act of God? :-)

I very much would like to see the Everglades water flow restored, but only if it is clean water.

Here are direct links to my three articles on the water quality forum, in time order published at www.goodmorningfloridakeys.com. I was not kind to Billy Causey, Last Stand and Everglades Law Center.

Sloan Bashinsky, ex-lawyer on the lam from Birmingham (title to a new song, maybe, or a new book)

305-407-4285
1711 Seminary Street
Key West, FL 33040
www.goodmorningkeywest.com
www.goodmorningfloridakeys.com

Date: Tue, 6 May 2014 11:15:11 -0400
Subject: Re: Last Stand/Everglades
From: belapointe@gmail.com
To: sloanbashinsky@hotmail.com

Hi Sloan – Thanks for sending me these links, looking forward to checking them out. I got a chuckle from Last Stand’s “Action Alert” that mentions the clamor over the impacts of polluted Lake Okeechobee water on the Caloosahatchee and St Lucie rivers/estuaries and the suggestions to “move it south.” It is interesting that they did not mention the extensive algae bloom that occurred in Florida Bay last summer and fall. I have attached a satellite composite image from Dec 3-6 that shows the bloom extending from central Florida bay (downstream of Taylor Slough) all the way to the backcountry of the Lower Keys, eg Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge. The US ACOE has been actively working on the C-111 western project intended to deliver more water to central Florida Bay, and with the help of a very rainy wet season last year, more water (and nitrogen) went into the central bay. The result was the largest algae bloom since the early 1990s when the FKNMS officials demanded more fresh water be delivered to Florida Bay. I was a plenary speaker at the Everglades Coalition meeting in Naples last January and brought this sad news out to the agencies and public (again). The bloom caused a widespread sponge die-off in Florida Bay and it extended all the way offshore to Looe Key (my friend Don DeMaria saw the bloom at Looe Key and described it as “putrid”). I’m also attaching a few other papers that are relevant to the impacts of increased Everglades flows and nitrogen loading on water quality in the Florida Keys.

I’ll be back in the Keys sometime in June following my travels, perhaps we can meet again at CoCo’s for breakfast or lunch ? Till then, take care, and kudos to you for putting some sunshine on these important Keys issues.

Brian

On Tue, May 6, 2014 at 9:51 AM, sloan bashinsky <sloanbashinsky@hotmail.com> wrote:

thanks, sent to you from this email account, too, because sometimes my other email account  keysmyhome@hotmail.com - is treated as SPAM and goes into junk mail.

my cell, 305-4-7-4285

See 3 most recent posts at www.goodmorningfloridakeys.com


Date: Mon, 5 May 2014 21:15:58 -0400
Subject: Re: Action Alert! Keys Water Quality is at Risk!
From: admin@keyslaststand.org
To: keysmyhome@hotmail.com

Good evening.
I will send your comments along to Naja.
Thank you for your concern and passion regarding the importance of clean water for the present and going into the future. It is certainly shameful that so much damage has been done.
Respectfully,
Susan Reutling
Executive Coordinator
On Mon, May 5, 2014 at 7:30 PM, sloan bashinsky <keysmyhome@hotmail.com> wrote:

Naja:

From Last Stand’s Action Alert:

The Solution:  Good plans exist to clean Okeechobee’s water in the form of the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP), but funding for implementation of these critically important projects is stalled. CEPP needs to be included in the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) now being considered in Congress. But the Army Corps needs to act first.

Is there a comprehensive explanation of these “good plans”? If so, where can it be seen? Have the “good plans” been test-driven? Are they just theoretical? What are they? What is their history? What scientists will stake their jobs and reputations, their lives even, that these “good plans” will work, if implemented? How much will it cost to build and implement the system to clean all that dirty water?
I ask, because said “good plans” were not described at the recent water quality forum at Eco-Discovery Center in Key West, despite my repeated attempts to get the scientists to describe said “good plans”. Nor, after the forum, during your and my email back and forth, did you describe the “good plans”. In fact, you never once said the technology is there, or is doable, to clean all that dirty water before releasing it into the Everglades.
Certainly, the fresh water flow needs to be restored into the Glades. It was heinous what was done to the Glades, Florida Bay, and the Florida Keys and reef by fertilizer runoff, which led to the cut off of a great deal of water from going into the Glades. It was heinous sending that dirty water into Lake Okeechobee and from there to the east and west Florida coasts.
I still don’t understand why you still don’t tell the powers that be the dirty water is killing manatee on the east and west coasts, by destroying the water grasses they eat – that’s about the same as killing whales, conchs, sea grasses, sea turtles, corals, key deer and people with WMD – chemical weapons.
Maybe, instead, Last Stand should lobby the powers that be to buy up all the farms in the watershed above the Glades, then let Mother Nature clean up those farms as time passes, and then let the Glades go back to being how they were before the invasive species, and I don’t mean giant foreign snakes, walking catfish, killer lizards, etc. introduced into the Glades by the invasive species – humans.
Sloan

Subject: Action Alert! Keys Water Quality is at Risk!
From: admin@keyslaststand.org
To: keysmyhome@hotmail.com
Date: Mon, 5 May 2014 16:02:50 +0000

 

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***  ACTION  ALERT  ***

  • Keys water quality is at risk

  • The health of Florida Bay is in jeopardy

  • Your help is needed now to get “CEPP” on the Army Corps’ front burner

The Problem:  Last summer, releases of excess “dirty” fresh water from Lake Okeechobee to the east and west caused major water quality problems on both heavily populated coasts.  The degraded quality created a clamor for any future excess fresh water to be released instead south into the Everglades. Without first cleaning that water, such discharge would surely harm Florida Bay.

The Solution:  Good plans exist to clean Okeechobee’s water in the form of the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP), but funding for implementation of these critically important projects is stalled. CEPP needs to be included in the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) now being considered in Congress. But the Army Corps needs to act first.

How You Can Help:  Today call or email the offices of two key DC policymakers (Senator Rubio and Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen) and ask them to sign on to the letter that asks the Army Corps to approve the CEPP project. Remember to give your name, tell them where you live, and remind them that any funding delay is harmful both to Everglades Restoration efforts and to the people of the Keys who rely on good water quality for their livelihoods, recreation and health.

Senator Marco Rubio
DC office:      (202) 224-304
South Florida office:    (305) 418-8553
http://www.rubio.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
DC office:      (202) 225-3931
South Florida office:    (305) 668-2285
https://ros-lehtinen.house.gov/contact-me/email-me

And thank you for all YOU do! 

Please see the following Everglades Caucus letter signed by supportive representatives.

April 25, 2014
The Honorable Jo-Ellen Darcy
Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works)
108 Army Pentagon, Room 3E446
Washington, DC 20310-0108
Dear Assistant Secretary:

We are writing to express our extreme disappointment with the Army Corps Civil Works Review Board’s decision to delay proceeding forward with finalizing the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP) and to urge the Corps to reconvene as quickly as possible in order to finalize the CEPP Chief’s Report.

The importance of this project to America’s Everglades cannot be understated. Every rainy season, the Army Corps sends discharges of nutrient heavy fresh water from Lake Okeechobee out to our coastal estuaries instead of sending the water south to the critical habitats of Everglades National Park that desperately need fresh water. Discharges of nutrient heavy fresh water from Lake Okeechobee have plagued the coastal estuaries and communities of Florida for far too long. These releases contribute to an influx of fresh water harmful to public health, the fragile estuaries, and tourism-based economies of the area. The opposite problem exists south of the lake where fresh water is desperately needed to restore the natural ecosystem and crucial habitats of Everglades National Park. Delaying the approval and construction and implementation of CEPP is harmful to Everglades restoration efforts and to people of south Florida that rely on fresh water for their health and their livelihoods. Time is of the essence in moving forward with this critical Everglades restoration project.

We welcome members of the Review Board to witness first-hand the serious environmental problems that the completion of CEPP will help address, such as the damage that releases from Lake Okeechobee have on the coastal estuaries and the communities that depend on the water quality of their local waterways.
We again urge the Army Corps to move forward as expeditiously as possible. Please provide us with a written response that includes the upcoming dates and schedule for the Army Corps’ plans to finalize CEPP.

Sincerely,

Patrick E. Murphy, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Bill Nelson, UNITED STATES SENATOR
Ander Crenshaw, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Ted Deutch, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Mario Diaz-Balart, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Lois Frankel,MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Joe Garcia, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Alcee L. Hastings, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Bill Posey, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Tom J. Rooney, MEMBER OF CONGRESS
Debbie Wasserman Schultz, MEMBER OF CONGRESS

Last Stand
PO Box 146
Key West, FL  33041
305-296-3335 

admin@keyslaststand.org
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About Sloan

That's what this website is about, also goodmorningkeywest.com and goodmorningbirmingham.com. If you can't get a publisher to take on your wacky musing, you do it yourself.
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