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Rubio and Big Sugar get along well

By Staff | Mar 9, 2016

To the editor:

In April, 2015 the Cuban Fanjul brothers, principal owners of the sugar industry in SW Florida, launched Marco Rubio’s Presidential campaign with a $2700 a plate fundraiser.

Marco Rubio is a staunch supporter of sugar subsidies.

With the cooperation of SW Florida Water Management (members chosen by the Governor), the sugar industry has always been assured of proper control of the water supply to handle Florida’s cyclical wet and dry seasons.

The main source of Lake Okeechobee’s pollution is runoff from the sugarcane farms, with fertilizers rich in phosphorous fueling algae and invasive plant growth which smothers native plants and animals.

Periodic fresh water storm overflows along with this polluted water are directed east, but mostly west down the Caloosahatchee River for protection of both the sugar fields and communities located south below Lake O.

Consequently, the sugar industry has been allowed to destroy systematically the Everglades, Lake O., the Caloosahatchee River and SW Florida’s estuaries while littering our beaches with piles of algae and dead fish.

In the Gulf of Mexico the continual loss of bird and sea life is a direct result of the explosion of red tide algae, well beyond its natural cycles, fed by Lake O.’s phosphorous polluted waters.

Couple this with the salinity imbalance created by the intrusion from storm water releases, and we have a recipe for disaster.

The most important political force in the state of Florida is the sugar industry. Unless federal and state actions are taken to rein in the power of Big Sugar, our extreme environmental crisis will never be permanently resolved.

And you can be certain these actions will be dead on arrival with Marco Rubio in the White House.

Jill Dillon

Sanibel