a clear Summer day, prior to World War Two, the views from Mt. Le
Conte would extend for 60 miles or more. Currently a 12 mile view
is the average. As time moves on the skies become more and more
filled with air pollution. This pollution is suspected by scientists
to be causing the premature death of fir trees at the higher elevations.
The creation of acidic rainfall and fog has turned the Southern
Appalachian summits into frightening, spruce-fir graveyards. As
the population of our country increases, the passage of responsible
legislation is more important than ever.
League of Conservation Voters maintains a web site that chronicles
the voting records of our representatives in Washington. Use the
link below to check on your Senators and House members and their
voting activities. Why not e-mail them and let them know how you
feel about their voting records.
word conservative has been heavily used in the halls of the congress
in the past few years. It has been used so much by both political
parties that it's definition has become nearly abstract. Webster's
dictionary has several definitions of conservative. One definition
states "To preserve what is established and to resist
change". Another states " To be cautious or moderate".
This authors appraisal of those definitions are as follows;
be cautious and moderate is a good thing.
resist change in a changing society is a bad thing.
preserve the pollution of our environment and increased incidences
of various cancers is a bad thing. The worlds population has doubled
in the past forty years and will double again in a mere twenty years.
The United States population is not exempt from this explosive growth
of the human race and it is generally accepted fact that the US
is the largest polluter of any other country. In the world!
So what are we going to do?
illustrates the damage of the acidic rainfall better that the summit
of Mt. Mitchell. The highest point east of the Mississippi has the
stunning evidence of the consequences of an unbalanced environment.
The premature death of the Spruce-Fir forest on the summit can be
viewed as the forecast for the entire planet. The acidic rainfall
causes a chemical reaction in the soil at the higher elevations.
The element aluminum is created in increasing quantities as the
soil is impregnated with the "dirty" rainfall. The presence
of aluminum in the soil decreases the ability of the fir trees to
absorb nutrients. The young trees are able survive. As the trees
grow, however, the ability to ingest enough water and nutrients
from the soil decreases and the trees die.