TC PALM: Written by Gil Smart. June 13,2017. When it comes to preventing discharges from Lake Okeechobee, shouldn't every option be on the table? Or are some options designed to crowd out others? Last week, officials with the South Florida Water Management District thumbed their noses at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and vowed to plow forward with deep-injection wells — 3,000-foot holes in the ground into which excess water could be pumped during heavy rain events. In theory, it might be a great idea. But some environmentalists suspect it's a misdirection play designed to build wells instead of a reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee. District officials deny this. But, as always when it comes to Florida water issues, it's hard to tell whether pragmatism or politics is driving the bus. Continue reading "What's behind push for deep injection wells near Lake O?"read moreWall Street Journal: June 12, 2017. The Trump Administration last week announced a new agreement with Mexico to guarantee that sugar prices in both countries will remain well above the world market price. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross framed the deal as a big win—and it is, for the few sugar producers on both sides of the border. The losers are millions of consumers. No industry has enjoyed as much protection under the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) as sugar producers and refiners. Mexico raised its sugar import tariffs from third countries in 1994 to match U.S. protection levels and thereby form a customs union. While most of the U.S. economy had to adapt to competition from Canada and Mexico starting in 1994, the U.S. market remained heavily protected from Mexican sugar until 2008. Even when the market opened, U.S. sugar interests refused to adapt and filed antidumping and countervailing duty suits against Mexican exports. In 2014 the Commerce Department ruled in their favor. Mexico could have fought that ruling at a Nafta arbitration panel but its sugar lobby also likes high prices. Continue reading "Trump’s New Sugar High"read more
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