In late summer, I would swim and stream-walk a small section of the Raccoon River. While sedimented for decades now, the water was clear in the shallows. For a few years now, the water is pea-green from edge-to-edge. For decades and worse now, this water has strongly contributed to a vast hypoxia zone in the Gulf.

In the 1980s, I wrote about the wisdom of the river, focusing on the Des Moines River as a living, very open metaphor for the essential streaming dynamic of the universe that is within us as well in the streaming of our body metabolism and thought.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Don’t Drain The Swamp

Informed, Not Uniformed, Idiocy--Iowa Water Pollution Is Conscious Disregard 

Your 2 Cents’ Worth excerpts, Part 6 [various readers submissions/ Des Moines Register]:

“Drain the swamp,” as an image for ending corruption, is both backward and senseless now that landowners across the nation are being paid to restore swamps and other wetlands in order to solve flood an pollution problems.  We need to restore swamps, not drain them.


I attended a land auction in which a farmer paid $1,300,000 for a new cornfield.  But that farmer has no buffers or cover crops on his other land and probably won’t put them on his new land.  He can afford farm conservation, but apparently isn’t interested.


Iowa farmers should remember that Iowa children are learning about water quality in their classrooms now.  When they are old enough to vote, they will expect clean lakes and rivers, not excuses for why farm conservation has to be optional and very slow.


When historians fifty years from now are trying to figure out why we were such amazing idiots about climate change in the early years of this century, Election 2016 will figure prominently in their research.


Are the owners of the Dakota pipeline going to commit suicide to save face when their pipeline rusts and fails, polluting soil and water when they claim that would be virtually impossible.
We’ll see at the first earthquake.
[Note: A pipeline exec has stated that leaking pipelines are a reality at some point.] 

[Note: Pipeline already damaging Iowa, not just potential breaks]

Excerpts from Letter To Editor, Des Moines Register, 11-25-16: Richard and Judith Lamb, “Pipeline speed forward at expense of farmland,”:

Dakota Access, the Bakkan Pipeline builder, has construction violations that were dismissed by the Iowa Utilities Board.  “Dakota Access and the IUB have twisted the permit language to allow Dakota Access to speed construction at the expense of preserving Iowa farmland.”
Topsoil mixing and compaction in wet condition construction are some specific examples that have not been monitored.

If Iowa farmers were required to drink the water from under the land they farm, I bet water quality would improve.


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