Good news! More than 45,000 people have signed petitions, including the Save the Lake Petition, to stop the BP oil refinery from dumping more ammonia and sludge into Lake Michigan. And thank goodness, this issue has been featured in today's New York Times, so if you have a moment, I encourage you to read it. I first heard about this issue in May; I was astonished to discover that BP wants to dump 1,584 pounds of ammonia and up to 4,925 pounds of sludge everyday. What effects does this dumping have on plants and animals in Lake Michigan? And what effects does this dumping have on children and adults swimming in the lake?
And here's another question: What are the implications for stopping an increase in dumping pollutants into Lake Michigan? I'm guessing that the cost of gasoline will be affected if this permit is not granted. If this permit doesn't get passed, then maybe we'll have to pay even more money for gas. Imagine this: Would you be willing to pay $5/gallon for gasoline?
If I had to pay $5/gallon for gas, then it would alter my driving habits considerably. I already bike to work; well, my biking behavior would definitely increase. I would also think twice before hopping into car...I would ask myself if I really needed to drive to that destination and I would consider alternatives to driving to those locations. Maybe I would take the train to Chicago, as opposed to riding the bus. I would certainly drive less than I do now...no going to Saugatuck, which I'm driving to tomorrow!
Sure, I'm entertaining these questions now, but these questions would carry much more weight if the cost of gas were substantially raised. The gas issue also reminds me of Europeans, who are already accustomed to paying more for gas. So maybe it's about time we address how these issues (and implications) will affect our lifestyle behaviors.
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