When the GOP gathers at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena for the 2016 Republican National Convention next July, it’ll encounter extensive Koch contamination — and not just within its own Koch-infested party infrastructure, because Charles and David Koch are similarly responsible for the algal blooms wreaking havoc on the waters of Lake Erie.
Destructive fertilizer runoff has over the years produced economically and environmentally devastating algal blooms on the lake’s surface — and, according to The Plain Dealer, last summer’s was the worst yet.
The algal bloom was found to be slightly larger than the former record-holder from 2011, as well as the 2014 bloom that polluted the drinking water in Toledo and forced the shutdown of the city’s water-treatment system for three days.
This summer’s bloom forced several private beaches to close and damaged tourism and sports fishing, as well. The USEPA estimates that the blooms are responsible for $64 million in losses per year due to the additional cost of drinking water treatment, the loss of recreational water usage, and a decline in waterfront real estate values.
To put things in perspective: 2014’s algae bloom poisoned the water of “nearly half a million people” in Toledo. But 2015’s was even larger.
How do Charles and David Koch fit into all of this? They’re big-time supporters of the “vast expanse of toxic green algae” that costs Ohioans $64 million-a-year. It all comes down to fertilizer — and Koch Fertilizer is “among the world’s largest producers and marketers of fertilizer products.” But that’s not all. As detailed in Bridge Project’s recent report exposing Charles and David Koch’s history of getting rich at the expense of Ohioans, the two anti-environment brothers lobbied against regulations that would limit the type of destructive runoff their fertilizer products precipitated.
In July 2016, when the GOP comes to Cleveland to nominate the Kochs’ hand-picked presidential candidate, they’ll be just in time for 2016’s Koch-sponsored algae bloom. But, hey, at least the influx of out-of-state visitors will help off-set some of the $64 million in annual costs facing Ohioans… unless the bloom’s so bad that the water-treatment system has to be shut down and the entire convention relocated.