Friday, November 16, 2007

Oil Spill



A few days ago, my sister and I took a long walk along the beach of Rio del Mar, a beach south of Santa Cruz. We saw two oil-soaked birds. It was so sad to watch these sweet beings struggle for their lives.

And here's the rub: Rio del Mar is 80 miles from where the oil spill occurred.

We have a horrible history of oil spills in this country and throughout the world (three in past week: Bay Area, Minnesota, and one in the Black Sea ).

A big no-duh: there would be no need to transport oil at such risk to the environment if we invested in electrical and solar technology.

Rio del Mar is a gorgeous beach. You can walk for miles, even when the tide isn't especially low.

The ruins of a concrete ship (the S.S. Palo Alto which was formerly, ironically, an oil tanker) lay spread out at the end of the pier. The ship is now a resting spot and launching pad for birds and sea lions. But it used to be an entertainment spot wtih an arcade, dining room, dance hall and swimming pool--fitted as such after being towed from San Francisco down to Aptos (south of Santa Cruz) in the late 1920s.

It went out of business after two years due to the Great Depression. Then a winter storm cracked it across the midsection. Nature claimed it.

Wouldn't it be great if all oil tankers were obsolete?
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