NAPLES, FL - Despite warnings of rising coastal waters around the globe, scientists, in late 2012, found that the coastal waters abutting the Gulf of Mexico were actually declining at a rate of .001 (1/1000) inches per month. While in and of itself, this seems like an insignificant amount of change, over the course of the past year or so, the coastal shores have grown by more than that amount, or roughly .07 inches (7/100) or more.
First, the bad news. A sinkhole, the size of Nebraska is reportedly to blame for the lower water levels throughout the Gulf coast areas. No one in the scientific community was more surprised than Henrich Gottsmar, who discovered the anomaly.
"Vat ve haf here ees a complete and total deviation from ze norm," wrote Gottsmar, in a report he submitted to the Swiss Journal of Geosciences. A distinguished oceanographer from Switzerland, Gottsmar was hired by the Gulf Coast city of Naples, Florida to study the dwindling population of loggerhead sea turtles last May.
"Ve haf to assume zat ze primary reason ze number of zees turtles are dwindling is because ze ocean ees further out, and zees turtles haf to travel over a wider area of beach to reach zair nesting grounds. Ze small hatchlings, it appears, zen haf to travel a wider area of beach to again reach ze water, giving area predators, such as ze eagles and ospreys, more time to dine on ze delectable little turtles."
Gottsmar's findings were reported to area scientists from NOAA, and after rigorously decoding Gottsmar's report, they then did their own studies and found Gottsmar's conclusions about dwindling water around the coastal areas to be an undeniable fact. More bad news indicates that this trend will continue until scientists determine the best approach in fixing the leak.
As if this bad news wasn't bad enough, even more bad news broke Monday, when it was determined that the leak was a direct result of the Horizon Deepwater oil spill back in 2006. If you will remember, it took many, many months to get BP to own up to the spill, and many, many years to clean up the mess.
Scientists have already met with stubborn resistance from BP officials in trying to get them to find ways to stop the underground sinkhole from widening and threatening to turn the Gulf of Mexico into a second grand canyon.
"Let me put it in a context readers will understand," said Lee Wesley, chief meteorology professor at the University of Tulane.
"It's Saturday night. The husband is off with his buddies for a night out. The kids are both at sleepovers, and you are a mother who finds herself in need of some 'me' time. What better way to spend it than in the bathtub with candles, bubbles, and a nice bottle of chardonnay? Paints a lovely picture, does it not?
"But then, for some inexplicable reason, the stopper in the drain malfunctions and slowly, without your even noticing, the water starts to drain from the tub. Within ten minutes or so, you are sitting in about three inches of cooling water and 7 inches of bubbles. Fantasy land has come to a screeching halt," said Dr. Wesley, who admits to moonlighting as a creative writing professor to make ends meet.
"Bottom line," he said, "is that the great bathtub that holds the waters of the Gulf of Mexico is draining, and draining fast, and if we don't do something quick, all we'll have is an easier way to extract oil from the sea bed."
One has to wonder if this is not the plan of BP to begin with.
Now the good news. Tourists and ex-pats headed to warmer climes in the Central American countries of Costa Rica, Panama, and Beliz can look forward to that much more shoreline soon to build their dream waterfront homes. The cost, while expected to be astronomical, will be well worth the extra beachfront this lowering of the water tables will produce in the area.
Interestingly, BP executives have been spotted at area Costa Rican real estate offices inquiring about available or soon-to-be available beachfront properties in the area closest to the Gulf of Mexico.