FEMA Says: Open Your Eyes or…No Cash


FEMA Says: Open Your Eyes or…No Cash

by Amy Lignor

The horrible news coming out of South Florida is endless, as sea water enters and overpowers the Biscayne Aquifer. Salt water has already been recorded as being located six miles inland in Broward County, but is not likely to stop there. It’s not only the
South Florida, FEMA, Biscayne Aquifer, Broward County, drinking water, climate changefact that this is a highly populated area, it is also a fact that ninety percent of all South Florida receives its drinking water from underground, most coming from the Biscayne Aquifer.

Governor Scott, however, a man who thus far has not been all that interested in speaking about the “reality” of a world going through “climate change,” is now more than a bit worried. He states that this is “threatening the habitability of a region of close to 6 million of your fellow Floridians.” Yet, being angry or upset now may be too late for Governor Scott, considering it’s a fact that by taking no action when it comes to climate issues and sustainability, funds and any other aid that states would usually receive from FEMA will no longer be available to them. Why is that?


The federal government said they will not give out any money to any state that does not plan for climate change. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) updated its guidelines for state disaster preparedness plans. Under the new policy, plans will only be approved—which means federal funds will only be appropriated—if a state addresses the fact that climate change exists. And not only address that fact, but also show that they are working in many areas to try and stop their state’s human population, animal population and land itself, from being harmed in any way.


The guidelines clearly state: “The challenges posed by climate change, such as more intense storms, frequent heavy precipitation, heat waves, drought, extreme flooding, and higher sea levels, could significantly alter the types and magnitudes of hazards impacting states in the future.” FEMA’s guidelines go on to explain to each individual state that they must “assess vulnerability, identify a strategy to guide decisions and investments, and implement actions that will reduce risk, including impacts from a changing climate.”


FEMA actually allocates an average of $1 billion per year to disaster preparedness programs. Yet these are now funds that states won’t receive (no matter how much it’s needed) if they refuse to comply with the guidelines. (*Disaster relief funds, such as damage done by Mother Nature’s hurricanes, and so on, are not included in this cash allotment.)


A recent report: Climate Change AND Sea-Level Rise in Florida, is a full-blown report showing how badly the problems occurring there will affect Florida’s urban populations, economy, ecosystems and coasts. The Biscayne Aquifer is normally recharged by rainfall and the freshwater Everglades, yet it (and other coastal aquifers) are already experiencing saltwater intrusion. Rising sea levels will increase hydraulic backpressure on coastal aquifers, reduce groundwater flow, and allow this creeping salt water front to move further inland and cause an even greater mess. Everything from the Pensacola Bay and St. Johns River watersheds; to southern Florida, from Palm Beach to Miami, the Florida Keys, Naples, and Fort Myers are right in the line of this salt water intruding on their freshwater supplies.


With a sea level rise of approximately 6 inches, the heads of Florida will have to implement strategies ranging from water conservation and wastewater reuse, recovery and recharge to creating alternative water supplies. In addition, desalination practices will have to be done, seeing as that the salt content will also leak into sewer collection systems and damage all wastewater treatment operations.


Although Florida may be the state under scrutiny at the moment because of this issue they face, it is important to understand that if your particular home state is being run by people who are not interested, or simply not “buying” the facts of climate change, and nothing is done, then the normal aid that the federal government gives will no longer be available for clean-up.


Source:  Baret News