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The Post and Courier provides a forum for our readers to share their opinions, and to hold up a mirror to our community. Publication does not imply endorsement by the newspaper; the editorial staff attempts to select a representative sample of letters because we believe it’s important to let our readers see the range of opinions their neighbors submit for publication.

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Letters: Don’t fill in wetlands for developments

pc-072221-ed-letters

Wetlands provide wildlife habitat, mitigate flooding, protect downstream properties and improve water quality.

The Long Savannah housing development planned in West Ashley has been approved, transforming 3,000 acres of forest and wetlands.

As reported in the July 9 Post and Courier, the dispute that had held up the development concerned the plan to fill 209 acres of wetlands.

While the developer agreed to reduce the number of acres filled by 50, the Army Corps of Engineers is still permitting the destruction of 159 acres of wetlands.

In addition to providing wildlife habitat, wetlands mitigate flooding, protect downstream property and improve water quality.

Historically, the filling of wetlands for development has been a major contributor to flooding in our communities.

This recent resolution for Long Savannah should call attention to the Corps’ permitting processes.

The Army Corps Charleston District continues to permit hundreds of acres of wetlands to be filled for residential and commercial development, while other Corps districts across the country have taken a much more conservative approach in protecting these valued resources.

Similarly, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control continues to issue water quality certifications for these same projects and seemingly overlooks the cumulative impacts or costs to downstream communities.

When federal permitting fails to safeguard wetlands, taxpayers are left to engineer stormwater management remedies to protect downstream neighborhoods.

These efforts are expensive and not nearly as effective as the wetlands they are replacing. Both the Corps and the state need to reconsider criteria for issuing permits to fill wetlands and begin to look at best practices that have been implemented in other areas of the country.

This would save local jurisdictions millions of dollars.

KEITH BOWERS

Pine Island View

Mount Pleasant

Climate change damage

The western United States and Canada have been baking under an unprecedented heat wave this month.

Numerous locations are setting temperature records. Hundreds of lives have been lost. Climatologists have said the heat wave would have been “virtually impossible” without the influence of climate change.

Their findings have been confirmed and substantiated by independent reviewers.

For 50 years, many members of the Republican Party have blocked substantial movement on addressing climate change. At first, they denied climate change was occurring, but were proven wrong.

Then many said the climate change we are observing was a natural process. Again, they have been proven wrong.

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Now, they say the costs of addressing climate change are too high.

Numerous economic analyses have shown that doing nothing to address climate change is more costly than cutting back on CO2 emissions.

Some say that other countries, notably China, should do more to lead in reducing CO2 emissions. If the U.S. does not lead, then who will?

On a per capita basis, we are the leading emitter of CO2.

If not for the actions, or lack thereof, of people who disagree with the severity of climate change projected by scientists, those who died and others affected by the weather and fires would not have had to suffer.

MARK GEESEY

Indigo Bay Circle

Mount Pleasant

Opportunity knocks

You can’t go anywhere today and not see help wanted signs.

It doesn’t matter what industry or the level of position, every business needs talent. There has never been a better time for someone to get in the game and build their career.

Take an example from hospitality. I can be someone with very little skill and walk into just about any restaurant and get hired. All I need is a good attitude, the ability to show up and a willingness to be trained.

These simple attributes will make me invaluable to my manager. They will put me at the front of the line for opportunities to increase my pay and even be promoted.

At the very least, I have proven to be coachable, dependable and eager. These attributes transfer well to any line of work.

Manufacturing is another hot area. If I’m someone who doesn’t have the desire or the mindset to go to a four-year college, I can go to technical school and learn a skill to get my foot in the door. Once in, the sky is the limit in terms of growth.

Countless other examples could be listed. The point is now is the time for you to separate yourself from the pack. All it takes is some initiative.

Don’t wake up a year from now and have little to show for how you spent your time. Opportunity is knocking.

JIM PASCUTTI

Manor Lane

Mount Pleasant

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