How can changing behaviors and regulations positively and negatively impact the health and wellbeing of our oceans and communities even far from shore? “President Trump on Thursday signed legislation ending a key Obama administration coal mining rule. The bill quashes the Office of Surface Mining’s Stream Protection Rule, a regulation to protect waterways from coal mining waste that officials finalized in December” (The Hill online) – I have learned quite a lot about coal mining recently from open cut mining in Australia to deep mining in Poland on top of an understanding of the industry’s impact in my original home states of the South. As a former contractor who worked throughout the US I am intimately aware of the costly regulations that required me to do things like abate hazardous materials. As someone who now works to strengthen the health and well-being of our oceans, waters and communities I just don’t see how abolishing this regulation in it’s entirety is good for anyone but those with special interests in an industry already in decline. Miners aren’t losing their jobs because of these regulations. They are loosing their jobs for the same reason Blockbuster store employees lost theirs…the world is moving towards more sustainable energy sources (and movies.)
The take away: Regulations are going to continue to disappear along with perhaps whole agencies devoted to protecting our personal and environmental health and wellbeing. I have always put forth that while oversight provides a structured system of protection we still need to change behaviors. Whether or not we can effectively regulate plastic bags, sustainable fishing or responsible heavy industry balanced with the needs of the environment and business what we can each do is take daily actions that positively impact our world and each other. Your super power in this Legion of Ocean Heroes is simply your ability to think…and act.
Be informed and learn to think critically with a deeper understanding of issues beyond sound bytes – https://www.osmre.gov/programs/rcm/StreamProtectionRule.shtm
And here’s some more encouraging news about the positive impact the declining global burning of fossil fuels has had on carbon –emissions…https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/rise-in-global-carbon-emissions-slows/