There has been some wind damage but the big ticket here is flooding. Any time there is a weather event in this state there is flooding and flood damage. Why? Because basically, the entire state is a swamp just barely above sea level. And also, because stupid people, and way too many of them, insist on living in the flood plains and beaches where any sizable increase in water puts them under water. I don't want to seem crass, but, if you are going to build your dream house in an area that has a history of flooding... you pays your money and you takes your chances. Trouble is, all of the rest of us have to pay to bail your dumb asses out through exorbitant insurance costs.
But I digress. The reason this is the best thing to happen to the state in many a year is because of all of the rain. Specifically because of where all of this rain is falling... on the central highlands.
Florida is in a water crisis. Our creeks and rivers are at record low levels and our magnificent springs are flowing at 50% of their historical rate. Once abundant lakes are now grass pastures. The grand Okefenokee Swamp, the headwaters of the Suwanee River, is nearly dry and has been ravaged by wild fires that have burned tens of thousands of acres, devastating one of our most important wildlife refuges. The Floridan Aquifer, once thought to be an inexhaustible source of pure water, has flat dried up in some areas. The central highlands that run right up the center of the state are the primary recharge areas of the aquifer. For years those of us concerned with this vital resource have prayed for a slow moving tropical storm to replenish it. We finally got what we've prayed for. But it won't be enough.
Sadly, there will be heartbreak and loss suffered by many people. But it's inevitable. Our state is so over-developed, over-abused, and over-populated that it is difficult to imagine a sustainable model for it. Florida is soon to reach a population of 20-million people, making it the third largest state in the union (behind California and Texas). Who would have ever thought that we would one day be larger than New York? Although, I guess it's understandable since half of New York has moved here.
From my perspective, Thank You God! We can deal with flood and storm damage. We cannot deal with the loss of the one thing needed by every living creature... water.
|Debby's storm clouds moving in over the marsh on Big Talbot Island.|
|Surf beginning to kick up in Nassau Sound. One of the downsides to storms is the loss of the centuries old cedars and oaks along the shore.|
|On a lighter note... Summer Solstice sunset from our dock.|