Disgusting Smell Takes Over SoCal -- But Don't Worry, It's Perfectly Natural!

Salton SeaFor those who live in Southern California, Monday brought a whiff of something horrific to come. The Salton Sea -- a saltwater lake 150 miles southeast of Los Angeles -- is thought to be the culprit of a stench in the city that was so foul, some people called 911 in a smell-induced panic.

The smell, which was described as "rotten mush" by some, was no figment of SoCal's imagination. It permeated the area and upset many people, but air quality investigators weren't willing to 100 percent blame the Salton Sea. Many initially believed a toxic spill or sewage leak had caused the stench.

The Salton Sea is a "dying sea," which means if something isn't done soon to help preserve it, it will disappear forever. It's possible that a fish die-off within the past week combined with strong storms could have moved the water enough to release smelly bacteria from the sea floor. Yum!


Of course, many are now using this as an excuse to get more serious about the Salton Sea Restoration Plan, an effort that would preserve the lake and its ecosystem so that the birds and other animals that call the "sea" home wouldn't die off as well.

Now, if only global warming came with an awful smell.

In all seriousness, it's a fact that people won't care about an issue unless it directly affects/hurts them. In other words, hotter summers aren't necessarily a bad thing for many, but flooding and other issues that will arise from global warming are. Of course then it will be too late.

My guess is everyone who smelled that smell will be joining the Salton Sea restoration project since it will only get worse if nothing happens. It may even become a daily occurrence.

It's great if people do suddenly care about the environment in some small way because of this, but there are even bigger fish in the sea, so to speak. There are environmental issues that are so easy to ignore. Until they aren't.

It's too bad people aren't smart enough to see what is under their own nose. It seems they probably need to smell it to believe it.

Do you think people care about the environment?


Image via Seabamirum/Flickr

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