Gov. Ron DeSantis said officials are pumping out 33 million gallons of water a day from the pond, and that the water "is not radioactive." Is he lying?
April 5, 2021

It's Ron DeSantis, so you won't be surprised he's lying when he says the looming Piney Point catastrophe doesn't involve radioactive water. Via CBS News:

Officials said at the meeting that the greatest threat for the time being is flooding. Even after days of pumping water out of reservoir, there are still roughly 3,450 million gallons of wastewater that could suddenly be unleashed.

If the reservoir were to fully collapse, one model shows that the area could see a "20-foot wall of water" within minutes, acting Manatee County administrator Scott Hopes said.

Phosphogypsum is the "radioactive waste" left over from processing phosphate ore into a state that can be used for fertilizer, according to the Center for Biological Diversity.

"In addition to high concentrations of radioactive materials, phosphogypsum and processed wastewater can also contain carcinogens and heavy toxic metals," the center said in a statement on Saturday. "For every ton of phosphoric acid produced, the fertilizer industry creates 5 tons of radioactive phosphogypsum waste, which is stored in mountainous stacks hundreds of acres wide and hundreds of feet tall."

Oh look, DeSantis was warned of critical tears in the pond liner three different times last year. But in a complex situation where we have to balance the needs of the Republican donors versus environmental harm, well, Ron is probably not the guy you want making those decisions.

And the Florida environmentalists who tried to oppose the company's dumping permit were scared off by the threat of a SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation) lawsuit.

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