After Getting Sick From Algae Bloom Exacerbated by Heat Wave and Drought, Inhofe Jokes the “Environment Strikes Back”
[Via Climate Progress]
Irony can be so ironic. A day after cancelling his keynote address at the Heartland climate denial conference because he felt “under the weather,” Republican Senator Jim Inhofe today insisted his sickness was due to a toxic algae bloom on the Grand Lake in Oklahoma where he has a home – joking to a local newspaper that “the environment strikes back” and ”Inhofe is attacked by the environment.”
“There is no question,” the Oklahoma Republican said, linking what he thought was a routine dive into the lake last Monday morning to a severe upper respiratory illness.
“That night, Monday night, I was just deathly sick.”
Inhofe and his wife, Kay, have had a home on the lake for decades, and he has never seen that kind of algae in the water previously.
The high temperatures plus fertilizer-based runoffs are causing these blooms. And the blue green algae can be deadly, killing cattle that drink the water.
Inhofe was lucky. But his granddaughter seems to have more smarts than he does:
Environmental officials in Oklahoma sent out a warning today about major blue-green algal blooms around the Northeastern portion of the state, saying this is the largest bloom the area has ever seen. Because “toxins harmful to humans and animals can be produced in some algae blooms,” it is strongly recommended you do not swim in places where there are visible blooms. Ironically, Inhofe, who has chaired the Senate Environment Committee, didn’t know that, but even his teenage granddaughter figured it out.
“I didn’t think anything about it,” he said, recalling that he had encouraged his 13-year-old granddaughter to join him in the water but she declined.
“She didn’t want to get in that green stuff.”
Maybe she should be Senator.
Algal blooms are a real problem of warming waters. I hope he takes precautions next time he decides to swim in the lake.