A scientist at the International Joint Commission said massive algae blooms on Lake Erie are becoming “very difficult to control.”
Algae blooms are caused by an elevated level of phosphorus in the water.
Phosphorus is used in farm fertilizer, lawn fertilizer and everyday products like shampoo and toothpaste.
It gets in the water through a variety ways, including:
- Blown there by the wind.
- Soaking through the soil, entering the ground water and flowing into rivers and lakes.
- Rain washes it off the top of the soil and directly into rivers and lakes.
Raj Bejankiwar is the lead on the Lake Erie Ecosystem Priority, a branch of the International Joint Commission that is studying algae levels in Lake Erie.
In April, he predicted Lake Erie would see near-record algae levels, and he was right. He called this summer “a classic example” of how and why algae blooms flourish.
“We have more intense storms, so we have more intense runoffs. And because we have more big storms, the phosphorus runs off and ends up in the lake. So that’s the reason it’s becoming very difficult to control,” he said….
- Causes of Lake Erie toxic algae bloom harder to control, experts say (lfpress.com)
- Report urges U.S. and Canada to reduce algae blooms in Lake Erie (globalnews.ca)
- Toxins from algae in Lake Erie pose threat to drinking water (foxnews.com)
- Ohio EPA to set limits to deal w/ algae (newsnet5.com)