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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

What Exactly Does the FDEP Do?

After months of others pleading with the FDEP to do something to protect our health, there is no action. Plenty of emails, meetings, calls, and hand waving, but nothing that will stop the contamination of the island and the threat to our health.

Consider this email exchange:

September 12, 2007
Dr. Sanchez,

The DEP does not have the legal authority to regulate airborne H2S from these types of dewatering projects. The Collier County Health Department oversees these issues.

The South Florida Water Management District issued the dewatering permits for this project. They are thus performing compliance for the permit conditions. We are in a support role, primarily in the area of water quality sampling.

Thank you for bringing these matters to our attention.


Jon M. Iglehart
South District

-----Original Message-----
From: mariodbiq@gmail.com = Dr. Mario Sánchez
Sent: Monday, September 10, 2007 8:12 AM
To: Iglehart, Jon
Subject: highly toxic levels measured of H2S

mr. iglehart

i have been asked to send to you our measurements of hydrogen sulfide from a dewatering site, as measured on 9/7/2007. please see the attached.

the entire report, along with the videos, can be seen at http://marcoislandblog.blogspot.com/2007/09/measured-levels-of-hydrogen-sulfide.html#links

though there was a strong breeze, we were picking up these measurements as far away as approximately 100 feet from the source.

these measurements suggest a highly toxic environment. the citizens of marco island are being subjected to highly dangerous levels of a known toxin. and as can be seen from the videos, the same level of damage is being directly introduced into a waterways.

it is time for the state authorities to clearly, unequivocally and immediately stop this offensive activity once and for all before any more people become seriously ill.

mario r. sanchez, m.s., ph.d.

This is a curious response given the FDEP’s mandate as found on their web site (http://dep.state.fl.us)

“The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the lead agency in state government for environmental management and stewardship. The Department of Environmental Protection is one of the more diverse agencies in state government, protecting Florida’s air, water and land.”

Fact: hydrogen sulfide is a known lethal toxin. Fact: the FDEP’s mandate is to protect Florida’s air, water and land. Fact: toxic levels of hydrogen sulfide are being pumped on Marco Island into the open (air), into the waterways (water) and onto the ground (land). But the FDEP has no authority to regulate hydrogen sulfide from “these dewatering projects”?

What? So who does? Really, when the FDEP is funded do the plutocrats say “the FDEP must protect the air, water and land – but not if it’s from toxic levels of hydrogen sulfide”???

Albert Einstein ran across the very same irrational nodes of the Iron Triangle. Since these very same bureaucracies thought of him as an idiot too (so you see, we Marco Patriots are in good company!), in frustration he said “Insanity [is] doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Dr Einstein then chose to ignore them and then took his issues directly to the people.

Given that the present Marco Island governance is not interested in protecting our health or that of the environment, we turned to the FDEP. But as we have learned, the FDEP is not going to protect the air or land on Marco Island and has abdicated their responsibility to protecting the water by pointing to yet another bureaucracy – which hasn’t enforced the restrictions they placed on the dewatering process. Therefore, continuing communicating with the FDEP, insisting that they do something different than doing nothing, is insanity.

The 2005-2006 state of Florida budget shows a line item for “Environmental Protection” – presumably in part being FDEP’s budget – of $3,499,906,958.

So, what exactly does the FDEP do?


  • Why Mario, it's quite simple. The FDEP spends $4 billion to protect the air, water and land ... not the people, birds and beasts who breathe the air ... not the fish, vegetation, invertebrates and mammals that populate the water ... not the plants and insects that cover the land. These are left to God and the Patriots of Marco to protect on a somewhat smaller budget.

    Ed Foster

    P.S. But do follow Jon's subtle suggestion and get your data to the DOH (U.S. as well as Florida). They're supposed to protect "health" not the "environment." That's how beaurocracy (sp?) works.

    By Anonymous cares-chair, at Thursday, September 13, 2007 9:40:00 AM  

  • oops - you're correct ed.

    i have operating under the mistaken impression that dumping toxic levels of a known toxin onto the land which runs into the water which on the way dissipates into the air had something to do with damaging the land, water and air. which it appears that an irrelevant bi-product of this contamination is that those living things that inhabit the land water air are hurt.

    it is truly up to the marco island patriots.

    thank you for clarifying this for me.

    By Blogger Dr. Mario, at Thursday, September 13, 2007 12:07:00 PM  

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