Sunday, August 13, 2006

Last week, West Coast; now Georgia's coast in danger of becoming dead zone

From "For 20 years, a scientist near Savannah has taken weekly water samples from the same dock, giving him a composite snapshot of the estuary's health.

Pieced together, the view goes from good to fair and getting worse. Peter Verity's data tells him the estuary --- where rivers wrestle with the sea --- is in trouble.

Dissolved oxygen, the breath of life for shrimp, blue crabs, oysters and fish, is declining at an alarming rate. Within 10 years, Verity, a professor at the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, predicts there won't be enough left for the sea life we love to eat. Those creatures will be replaced by jellyfish, which don't need as much dissolved oxygen and feed on the type of organisms that grow in a polluted estuary, he says."


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