Panthers One, Drilling Zero!

Our beloved  Florida Panther
Picture credit: John White


What day is it?

It is once again finally,  feel good Sunday.

Thank God!

In a recent vote that looked sure to go the other way, Exploratory Gas drilling was rejected by the  Big Cypress Swamp Advisory Committee.

It is still unfathomable to me,  that the recommendation for this disastrous idea came from the Florida DEP.

What are they thinking in Tallahassee?

The risks here for extinction, for the single most beleaguered mammal in the entire country, the  Florida Panther,  are now as high as they have ever been.

Why on Earth would they have ever offered this up to be considered in this area to begin with?

They are certainly more than aware of the fact,  that this is the Ancestral Habitat for the Florida Panther and that if there is an OOPS,  it could spell the end of our  ” State Animal.”

Any mistakes, any spills, any accidents of any kind,  will likely finish off this beautiful animal,  who once freely roamed this entire state and is now holding on,  in merely a fraction of the space that it needs to exist,  by the barest of threads.

Right now, Florida’s Panthers are dying or being killed,  as fast as they can reproduce, their gene pool is now so reduced,  that cats from Texas were brought in a few years ago, to avoid the similar catastrophe that is happening with the also likely standing on the brink of extinction, African Cheetah.

The Panther’s ranges have been cut, reduced,  or just out right stolen,  by various State or Government groups,  for a myriad of other uses, none of which are not now, nor ever will be, more important than the lives of this critically endangered animal.

If you have the time,  please read some of the signs in the picture at the bottom of the reference story.

These words, these thoughts,  represent the feelings of the completely ignored and overruled  in this state, who just don’t happen to have a permanent place on the floor in Tallahassee,  or any well paid Lobbyists to do their talking and walking.

They are doing it the only way that they can, the hard way, with their voices and hopefully with their votes in the next election.

We need to put people in office in Florida,  who care more about our priceless living things,  than campaign donations, or money in the bank.

So, thank God, on this  beautiful Easter Sunday,  the score  is:  Panthers  One,  Drilling Zero!


Places to learn more:

This Sierra Club website is about to become,  by the looks of it so far,  a  new favorite.

Sierra Club Florida News

Big Cypress Swamp Advisory Committee Votes to Deny Oil Drilling

DEP Advisory Committee Says No to Oil Drilling in Big Cypress Swamp




15 thoughts on “Panthers One, Drilling Zero!

    • Yes, sadly in all of my years here, I have only seen one Panther.
      I was on my first trip down here in 1998, to see my Mom since they moved here into the Ocala Forest.
      It was dead on the side of the road just as I pulled out of the woods onto the highway near their house.
      That day I knew nothing about them, now my heart breaks for them and what they face.

  1. Let’s keep our hopes alive. But me: I’m hoping for a new virus that takes out a great deal of the human population. Cold? Yes. But no colder that what we’re doing to this world.

      • I have no hope that humanity will actually awaken soon enough to the harm that it is causing the planet. As bad as things are here, they are far worse in other parts of the world. Look at the pollution in China. It’s horrible: air, soil, and water all badly polluted.

        Much of that pollution can be traced back to the West’s insatiable desire for inexpensive products. They can be manufactured cheaply in China in part because workers there are grossly underpaid. But Chinese products are also cheaper because factories there do not have to pay as much for pollution abatement. Instead, those costs are externalized through the simple means of spreading out all of those costs to essentially everyone. Chinese air pollution is already contributing to climate change. Chinese water and soil pollution also have their costs, and those costs will be spread across the globe.

        We here in the West have no appetite to pay more for our Chinese-made products, and we’re willing to have China suffer the immediate effects of the lack of pollution control. But we will eventually pay for those costs.

        But my real point is this: China is at least twenty years behind the United States in terms of its interest in controlling pollution. And then we can look at other areas where the world is being destroyed. Think of the continued cutting of the Amazonian rain forest. Look at the devastation being visited on central Africa.

        Our species has a voracious appetite. We are feeding that appetite through extractive economies: taking taking taking from this earth. As a species, we have not reduced our appetite since we burst out of Africa some hundred thousand years ago.Through almost all of the world we are an invasive species, with no truly effective natural enemies except some bacteria and viruses. Nothing else keeps our population in check–except the amount of resources that we can extract from the natural world.

        Back before trade became global, local human populations could not grow particularly large, as they would outstrip the capacity of the local environment. But in the twenty-first century, our environment is global, and we can see the Western countries in particular reaching around the globe to feed their hunger. But China and India, with their huge populations, are beginning to emulate the consumerism of Western societies.

        I simply do not see an end to our voracity–except an ending in Malthusian famine. At some point we will demand too much of the world. I would rather not see us get there, because we will have wrecked much of the beauty of the world by that time: we will have poisoned too much of the planet, driven too many creatures to extinction. So I think that it would be better for the world–not the people in it, but the world as a whole–if the human population were significantly decreased by the advent of a super-virus.

        I think that the great laboratory of nature will soon devise such a virus. All we need is to see the right mutation of an existing virus: something that would have a fairly long incubation period, causing initially only a low level of illness; coupled with a high degree of transmissibility; and topped off with significant mortality. Think of a mix between, say, norovirus, influenza, and HIV. Norovirus spreads rapidly in the right environment (cruise ships), but it doesn’t have a terribly high mortality rate. But allow it to mutate a bit to have a higher mortality rate and a later onset of debilitating symptoms.

        Viruses are mutating constantly. I think that it’s only a matter of time before the right mutation appears. As the human population grows, viruses have a larger and larger laboratory in which to work.

        So, aren’t I the cheery old man?

    • Thankfully Donna and others post about these issues – I know I didn’t know much about the animal and related issue that I’ve read about on this blog… and I always gave some time for decades to making the orld a better place… its just a huge job so; as you say – lets’s keep our hopes alive.

  2. That’s WONDERFUL news… But like you, I’m appalled that it was even raised as a possibility to begin with. Sigh. One of the most unique areas on the ENTIRE planet. An endangered habitat. Home to endangered animals. It boggles the mind. Money and greed rule.

    Keep on shouting, woman! I do have hope… even in the face of such selfish idiocy on the behalf of our species. Just because of people like you. 🙂

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