How many dolphin/whale deaths does it take to stop this insanity?
When I was 17 I worked at Great Adventure. I was a supervisor of the diving and dolphin shows. In between the shows, I was able to get in the tank and swim with the dolphins who are really playful creatures. It was like I saw in the TV show "Flipper" which was popular back then in reruns.
We had three dolphins, Salty, Eddie, and Jill. When Jill got sick, you could see the reaction of the other two and how it was affecting them. We took Jill to freehold Area Hospital which is now Centra State, sponging her with water until she died with me holding her up by her head. It was so sad to see that I cried along with the others who were in the van with me.
Tuesday in Sea Isle City 8 dolphins died on 2 beaches. 6 were beached on 52nd street and had to be euthanized and 2 were already dead on 50th street when the marine Mannal Stranding Center arrived. On television, I could see people bringing buckets of water trying to save the struggling dolphins to no avail.
What's causing all these dolphins and whales to wash up dying or dead on our beaches?
If you even bring up the wind farm construction activity that's been taking place as many people have, most recently in a hearing in Wildwood last Thursday night, you'll be met with immediate rejection and defensive response as Cindy Zipf, the executive director of Clean Ocean Action points out.
How about an explanation from the Murphy administration about what's really causing the problem based on fact? Are they afraid to halt the wind farm work for fear that the truth of the cause will come out? Do they even care at this point or is it just purely about the money they think they'll make from it?
Let's talk about the money that will be lost from all this wind construction. Let's start with the tourism industry. Who's going to want to pay thousands of dollars a week to take their family on a Jersey shore vacation only to have to look at dead sea life washing up on the beach? That could wipe out the beaches and boardwalks not to mention the restaurants where the special will be whatever washes up today over pasta.
Let's talk about the fishing industry which will be wiped out. Of course from an environmental standpoint, let's talk about these beautiful creatures which are being wiped out in the name of progress.
We need to find an answer beyond a reasonable doubt as to why this is happening. If as the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection said in a statement they have concluded there is no link between ongoing offshore wind-related construction activities and the increase in marine mammal deaths, then prove it by being transparent with the information.
If that's not the case and there is a connection, then let's do what several mayors and congressmen are asking and shut down the construction until we find out the cause and solution for the problem. It really is as simple as that. But as we all know from living in New Jersey, nothing could ever be that simple.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise only. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.
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