Thursday, March 5, 2009

A Letter to Booby Jindal

Honorable Bobby Jindal,

In your response to President Obama's address to Congress, you displayed some ignorance. You decried that $140 million had been earmarked for 'volcano monitoring'. If you had studied a bit more, you might have seen that only a fraction of the $140 million was allocated for volcano monitoring. What I find must troubling about your comment is that you know the value of being able to predict natural disasters accurately. Funding for science was severely cut under former President Bush.

Advances in science can help all prepare for natural disasters. Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast just 3 1/2 years ago. Better weather satellites may have been able to offer better predictions. Alas, our weather satellites are in a sad state of affairs. Wouldn't it be nice if more funding for those satellites, river gages, and other tools necessary to predict natural disasters could be made available?

Right now, other tools to help predict hurricanes are being developed.

In the stimulus package was also money allocated to help restore and preserve coastal marsh lands. Much of it will probably go to Louisiana to help rebuild the marshes that have been lost due to hurricanes and other factors. These marshes provide a natural buffer to protect New Orleans and Hancock County Mississippi. Those funds are close to a billion. Due you consider that a waste?

There are people in Hawai'i and Alaska whose lives can be and are impacted by volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis. They and we, should not be denied the tools to keep our lives safe.


A Concerned Citizen of Gulfport Mississippi

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