Friday, August 29, 2008

Public outcry

The fine folks at Missouri's DNR have just poked a timber rattlesnake with a stick. Missourians, you see, love their rivers and streams. They collectively dedicate literally thousands of volunteer hours to keeping tabs on water quality, removing rubbish, and planting trees along riparian zones all in an effort to keep the state's waterways safe and clean. DNR has decided to remove restrictions on industry that would allow bacteria levels to escalate in streams and rivers that are not specifically used for recreational purposes. They want to meet the same compliance as the federal standards, all relaxed under the current administration to allow high levels of arsenic and other metals. Apparently, the initial press release was met with such ire by our citizens that the department has reissued the information explaining the removal of restrictions in more detail. Essentially, it claims that we won't pollute all of Missouri's rivers, just the ones we're not using for fishing, boating and swimming. Of course, in Missouri, as in every other watershed, it's all connected.

While I have knowledge of the leadership at DNR, I'm rather unsure of who is really leading this campaign. Go here to read about the issue and provide comment through a survey on the proposal. If you don't have a specific waterway to comment on, write to this email address directly with your comments: cleanwater@dnr.mo.gov
Hurry, though, as the comment period ends on Sunday.

1 comment:

ROBERT J. KORPELLA said...

While the link provided does explain the DNR's viewpoint of the proposal, I could not find a link to a survey to provide comment. I recommend sending comments directly to the email Allison provided.

I agree with you - it is all connected. Thinking that dumping pollutants into certain streams will not affect the rest of our watershed is like believing we can swim in the non-chlorinated portion of a pool.

Creeks connect to streams, rivers, lakes, groundwater, reservoirs and drinking supplies. This is an important issue we need all be concerned with. It affects each and every one of us.