Monday, February 04, 2002

slight pollution or light pollution?

A recent report of an oil spill at a southern Delaware DuPont plant at first said that there was no impact upon the environment, and then later said that there was not yet any confirmation of impact upon wildlife.

Can there be a fuel oil spill in a river that doesn't hurt the environment?

I applaud the worker who risked his neck to turn off the pump and limit the amount of the spill. It was in the middle of the night, on a slippery barge, and he was being sprayed with fuel oil. He was courageous.

But let's not dance around whether there is an environmental impact - of course there is. Is it less of an impact because of the efforts of the barge operator and other workers? Yes, and thank goodness.

While this pollution was on my mind, and while web surfing for a replacement light fixture, I came across a list of web sites dealing with light pollution. At first I didn't understand (not being an enviromental attorney by specialty). Were they talking about a little pollution?

No, it turns out that there is a thing called light pollution dealing with too much light, or light of the wrong color, or light during the wrong hours of the day. There are even ordinances controlling all of these things (pdf), in some jurisdictions.

Just another argument to buy a 100,000 acre ranch in Montana and hunker down smack dab in the middle.