Going Green

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Water and the Veto

There is a definite need for a line-item veto power.

Overwhelming Vote for Water Resources Act Answers Bush Veto Threat

Source: Copyright 2007, Environment News Service
Date: September 24, 2007

Despite the looming threat of a presidential veto, the U.S. Senate today passed the Water Resources Development Act conference report by a vote of 81-12. The Senate passage follows House approval in August by a vote of 381-40. The bill authorizes flood control, navigation, and ecosystem restoration projects.

The law now goes to President George W. Bush for his signature, but the administration has signaled that the president will veto the bill when it gets to his desk. Still, there is thought to be strong bipartisan support for the Water Resources Development Act, WRDA, making a veto override possible.

The legislation authorizes nearly $7 billion for wetlands restoration and flood control projects to put Louisiana on the path to Category 5 storm protection, and authorizes dozens of other critical...(complete story here).

Some of the projects in this legislation are probably worthy of taxpayer money. I have problems with Category 5 protection for Louisiana. Now, let me qualify that. Some wetlands restoration in Louisiana and Florida makes sense. Natural protection is better than artificial. However, if we are anticipating rising seas due to Global Warming, what good will be done by wetlands restoration in vulnerable areas? Most of New Orleans should never have been built. If you build below sea level you can expect to get wet. Coastal wetlands naturally protect against storm surge such as inundated New Orleans during the last hurricane. Rising seas will push those wetlands further inland -- if you accept Global Warming as real.

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