With all the trouble brewing in Raleigh, you might have missed this one: a $1.65 million contract to use solar powered technology to fight algae in Jordon Lake.
Instead of working to keep the lake clean in the first place, Republicans have done what Republicans always do: Put something at risk (lakes, air, the ocean, whatever) and hope there'll be some silver bullet to clean things up after the fact. Especially if you can also make a bunch of money from the silver bullet. Nelson Dollar stands by the bill, even though he doesn't really know where it came from:
“I don’t know if it’s pointed at one company or not, but my understanding is that (the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources) wanted to test the methodology in a pilot to see if it would actually work,” Dollar said.
Really? A $1.65 million dollar pilot? With equipment that seems written into the legislation by the company itself? On a 13,000 acre lake?
Kenneth Reckhow, a professor emeritus at Duke University who specializes in water resources, said that the specificity of the item would exclude alternative algae-fighting options. “The idea that there’s only one company in the world making something that has any chance of doing any good, and it happens to be SolarBee, it boggles the mind,” said Reckhow, who has been critical of the legislature’s push for a “technological” solution to Jordan Lake’s water quality problems.