“Musings of a Malcontent” is a weekly op-ed by GlobalWarmingisReal contributor Carlyle Coash
Ah, the holidays.
This time of year is so inspirational. All the lights and tinsel. All the special pumpkin lattes and peppermint hot chocolates. All the perky Christmas music that permeates every waking moment until you find yourself singing along even though you loathe the very sound of the songs themselves. It’s that crazy Christmas spirit – infecting everything. Like any effective contagion it is impossible to control and soon it is everywhere.
A news story I read earlier this week is the embodiment of that Christmas-feel-good-I-just-want-to-go-out-and-help-others-in-need-kind-of-inspirational-tale we all love to hear about this time of year. Apparently the cooling canals for the Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant in southeastern Florida has become the breeding grounds for an endangered species of crocodile. In fact the little guys (they grow to 15 ft – yikes!) are doing so well that the species has been moved off the endangered list to the slightly better “threatened” list. Not only that – there are several other species, like the manatee and the loggerhead turtle, who are also thriving in the area. Amidst the shadow of this dangerous form of energy is a thriving community of challenged species growing by leaps and bounds, cutting through the stereotypes of three-eyed fish and other mutations so commonly associated with living in close proximity to nuclear power stations.
Only the Christmas Spirit could handle so much irony.
It is only a matter of time before the Nuclear lobby gets a hold of this and squeezes every last ounce out of it. Soon any design for a new plant will incorporate some plan for integrating habitat conducive to the rebuilding of endangered species. These species, which will be flown in from around the world if necessary, will be a shining example of how the natural world and the technology of nuclear fission can live in harmony. The two living side by side – with the only by-product of the union being thriving growth. No half-lives here. Just true collaborative symbiosis.
I think I need to go take a shower.
Now, to be honest I think it is great that the American Crocodile has gone from 300 to 1,500 in number in the last two decades or so. I am also happy that they have made use of the cooling canals, creating a protected environment for their families to grow. The whole area sounds amazing and is even doing better than the other two “sanctuaries” designed to support the growth of the species. Anytime we can turn around the damage done through over-development of the land is an excellent thing. Life will find a way. Right?
Yet, is it just me or does part of you know that in five years the story is going to be – “Monster Crocs knock over towers at Turkey Point Nuclear Plant – Eat plant workers whole!” I realize I have a vivid imagination and have watched too many B monster movies –but Come ON! That is totally possible. I read that article and that was all I could think about – huge crocodiles roaming around south Florida terrorizing all the retired folks in their RV’s. Chasing them across vast stretches of putting greens, littering the 18th hole with corpses and half digested yellow golf pants. You know this situation is totally going to turn around and bite us in the bum – literally. But (no pun intended) by that point it will be too late and the damage will be done.
This is what I worry about.
I definitely have too much time on my hands. I am seeking professional help.
In the meantime I will let the Christmas Spirit wash over me – dissolving away the visions of rabid 100-foot reptiles from my mind. After all it is not Halloween – it is Christmas! The time of elves and a big guy in a red suit – things that are not terrifying at all! Especially when they are crawling down my chimney in the middle of the night to leave unknown presents under the tree and eat my food.
No, nothing scary about that.
- American Crocodile Finds Refuge from Extinction in Nuclear Power Plant (treehugger.com)
- Biologists monitor crocodiles at nuclear plant (sfgate.com)
Image source: The Alopecian Muse