Thursday, April 30, 2009
Washington SB 6170 is fraught with governmental waste, as it seeks to do what the Federal Department of Energy is already mandated to carry out and federal programs have essentially been resolving: cleaning up radioactive waste and other by-products of weapons production and nuclear energy generation. The bill will like to give tax write offs for investors who put money in handling, storing, treating, immobilizing or disposing radioactive tank waste to prevent contamination of soil and ground water. Does it make sense for taxpayers to be paying environmental management companies who are providing clean-up services for radio-active waste clean up? Yes it is worthwhile to have a progressive idea, but introducing an environmental protection instrument or behavioral modification initiative that encourages transfer payments to enterprises that are essentially duplicating the federal government efforts, is probably not a good deal for the millions of tax payers in Washington State.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Reports from legislatures deliberating E2SSB 5735 indicate that the governor’s office probably did not do a good job at selling E2SSB 5735. The bill was packaged to deliver transportation choices that save time and money; keep Washington State engaged in the Western Climate Initiative, a regional program to reduce global warming pollution; and, reduce global warming pollution by the year 2025 from the lone coal plant in Washington State. Current opponents indicate that the scope of E2SSB 5735 is too broad and it needed to be narrowed to some specifics. Specifics that can be deliberately measured: For example, how much transportation investments would lead to deliverables in money saving for the state? What alternative transportation projects can actually save money for Washington State residents and businesses in light of the current business landscape? Answers to these and other questions could have positioned the governor’s office to help legislatures rally around E2SSB 5735 thereby giving it another shot at life.
Selling the Western Climatic initiative could have been a done deal, if the governor’s office had played significant leading role in the preparation and facilitation of the regional initiative. The governor’s office should have focused its energy at building grassroots’ support for the regional initiative by seeking to build the state status as a regional leader, totally committed to changing the way we do business with respect to our storm water drainage runoffs, industrial pollution and environmental management. The governor’s office should have offered efficient policy components in the bill that offered slightest advantage that the state will derive from the regional climatic initiative and set the tone as the leader driving the initiative around the region.
It is also possible to use the past performance of the only coal plant in Washington State with respect to environmental pollution as a selling point for legislatures to rally round E2SSB 5735. For the most part, the Coal plant makes money through emission of carbon dioxide and other green house gases. One could argue that the emission levels of the green house gases from this plant spells catastrophe for Washington resident’s health, the region as well as the nation. The combination of these disadvantages would have driven the law makers to see the moral imperative of saving Washingtonians from continued pollution from the Coal plant beyond the set date of 2025.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
For those legislatures who voted in favor of HB 1614, there was certainly no confusion as to what our priorities as Washingtonians should be. Those who said nay, we thank them as is the case on any issue, there is often a second side to all stories! Supporters of House bill 1614, candidly and effectively said to our friends on the other side of the aisle that, despite the probable challenge of a tight budget, there are some issues that must never be compromised. The long-term slow motion risk to human health of the extensive pollution of the Duwamish River and Puget Sound is one of such priorities. Scientists have documented the alarming rate of environmental pollution and its compelling impact on fishery and wildlife in the Puget Sound. The potential consequence of storm water runoff pollution to human reproduction system, including issues of breast cancer, low sperm count in males and mutation to human anatomy due to exposure to chemical compounds, is one that must not be ignored. We can either stand up to do something now, when the problem is not completely out of control, or wait until our hospital starts to find mutations in the reproductive systems of Washington State residents before we start to wake up to our responsibility: to protect human life and preserve our environment for generations to come.
Monday, April 27, 2009
Investment in Clean Water Infrastructure in Washington State offers the private sector the opportunity to make profit from the most critical resource in the world. Investments in clean ups and fresh waters are likely to dwarf the gains made in some other areas of Washington economy, including high tech and aerospace. The reality of this conception is the fact that the coming government mandated investment in infrastructure spending and the added impetus to innovate and create new machinery to solve the age long problem by the private sector, will create a multiplier effect in wealth creation from fresh water support enterprises. The combination of both private and public sector investment efforts have the potential of multiplying wealth while at the same time providing an avenue for us to clean up our rivers, estuaries and water bodies. The multiplier effect of investments in similar efforts in other areas of the world has shown that we can never loose by embarking on this laudable effort or investment. The promise of wealth creation from the simple goal of cleaning up our storm drainage and helping fresh water flow down the Washington Rivers and the Puget Sound cannot be overestimated.
Friday, April 24, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Our failures to curb the excessive level of PCB contamination of our waterways in the past has continued to lead to the gradual destruction of a gorgeous natural playground, a treasure house of fish and wildlife, that we may not regain, if we don’t stay engaged. HB 1614 is the first step in staying engaged. We need to help the Puget Sound breath better so that fishes and whales in our waters can be safe from industrial pollution. Making those who contribute to the deplorable state of our waterways pay for its clean up is a responsible thing to do on this earth day. We can’t continue to live in denial, failing to appreciate that our Stormwater runoff pollution is impacting the marine habitat. The bottom of the Duwamish River is excessively contaminated by industrial pollution. We need to support a bill that will help us move forward in correcting our negligence. We need to support the clean water bill in Washington State. We can’t have an end to the greatest most fascinating, most vulnerable Orcas whales, Seals and King Salmons in the Puget Sound.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
Friday, April 17, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
The compounding effect on our families of cutting deeply into environmental protection budget and its anticipated impact on water quality should not be underestimated. Witnessing such effect in the past fifteen years is heart rendering. Legislatures in
Monday, April 13, 2009
In light of budget cuts, backroom deals and budget debates confusion, can we ever reach sustainability in Washington State Environmental Resource Protection? The impact of residents activities on the ecosystem and the issue of sustainability is very much here with us as we attempt to divert necessary resources away from our collective problems. Open your eyes and visualize a sustainable environment!
Saturday, April 11, 2009
There are two basic arguments against cutting Washington State Environmental Protection Budget. First, it has not worked in the past, second, it is not going to work today or tomorrow. We all know what happens when essential services are cut because of budget decapitation: People and the environment become decapitated! We are told by our legislature in HB 1614 and SB 5518 that a cut in environmental budget can help balance past excesses in other areas of the state's budget The case cannot be far from the truth. Most recently, the rationale has been expanded into the state's health care insurance for the underprivileged. Like in the past, we already know what is going to happen to children from low income households, when affordable health care insurance is unavailable to them. Just like the children of the poor who are going to suffer tremendously in the coming years, our environment will suffer likewise. Mr. & Mrs. Legislature, here is a reminder just before you come to our homes to seek your bi-yearly support or votes: We expect our government to ensure that the water we drink is safe and the air we breathe is clean. Anything less is a compromise: Please, don't cut the environmental protection budget!