Lake Erie

US Gives $3.1 Million For Lake Erie Algae Projects

Dec 18, 2014
Satellite view of toxic algal bloom on Lake Erie
NASA Earth Observatory

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is allocating $3.1 million from a Great Lakes cleanup fund for efforts to reduce harmful algae blooms in Lake Erie that hit water supplies in Michigan and Ohio.

The money will be divided among three federal agencies and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

EPA regional chief Susan Hedman says some of the projects will improve water quality testing and algae bloom forecasting. Others will expand financial assistance for agricultural conservation practices in the western Lake Erie Basin.

Collin O'Mara, President of the National Wildlife Federation, held up a glass of algae-filled water from Lake Erie after the toxins produced by the algae shut down Toledo's water system.
National Wildlife Federation Staff

Nothing brings consensus like a crisis. During Toledo’s recent drinking-water ban, conflicting ideas about how to test for toxins caused confusion for decision-makers, and hat problem sparked rare, swift action by multiple layers of government to create a uniform, statewide protocol.

DrGBB

The National Center for Water Quality Research says the mild winter and spring temperatures could mean toxic blue-green algae will make its appearance in western Lake Erie earlier than usual.

Dr. David Baker says the algae will show up sooner if the water heats up more quickly. Another critical factor will be rainfall and the amount of fertilizer that runs into the lake from nearby farms.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. - An environmental coalition has awarded $115,000 in grants to nine groups for Great Lakes restoration projects.

The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition grants announced this week will help organizations participate in a federal program designed to improve the region's environment by cleaning up toxic pollution, preventing species invasions and rebuilding habitat and wetlands.