The largest-ever ‘dead zone” in the Gulf Of Mexico might develop this summer, scientists announced this week.
A dead zone, in case you don’t know, occurs in the bottom waters of oceans and large lakes where’s there not enough oxygen to sustain life. Typically, a dead zone is caused when nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous run off land and stimulate heavy growth of algae on surface water.
Experts say heavy spring rains in the U.S. Midwest flushed a lot nutrients into the Mississippi River, which of course drains into the Gulf of Mexico. The experts say that’s set the stage for a dead zone the size of New Jersey to develop in the Gulf.
I once interviewed an advocate of sustainable farming; he talked at length about dead zones. I don’t recall the topic ever coming up in any conversation I’ve ever had with a conventional farmer.
Are you bothered by what’s happening in the Gulf? If so, drop me a line and explain why. If you’re not bothered, or if you think the issue is overblown, drop me a line and tell me why.