Re: NANFA-- Worst environmental disasters?

Christopher Scharpf (
Wed, 10 Oct 2001 08:00:41 -0400

> What do you think the greatest man-made environmental disaster has been
> in recent history?

One of the greatest environmental disasters in the U.S. would have to be the
loss of the lower Colorado River and its native fishes because of high dams,
storage reservoirs, farming, and the introduction of exotics. Few people
realize that this river periodically flooded hundreds of square kilometers
of floodplain and desert playa, providing essential habitat for razorback
sucker, bonytail chub, humpback chub, and Colorado pikeminnow. The once
turbulent river now resembles the upper Mississippi and Missouri Rivers,
both physically and biologically. In fact, the lower Colorado is one of the
few major rivers in the world with an entirely introduced fish fauna.

The ever-growing dead-zone in the Gulf of Mexico, caused by the toxic
build-up of nitrogenous agricultural effluents, would also qualify.

Chris Scharpf

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