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Environment

MI environmentalist applauds state’s “impaired” ruling on Lake Erie

Lake Erie algae photo
Courtesy photo
/
NWF Great Lakes Regional Center, Ann Arbor
National Wildlife Federation CEO Collin O'Mara holds a glass filled with Lake Erie algae at Toledo in 2014. A Michigan-based NWF executive applauds the state of Michigan’s designation of its portion of the lake as 'impaired.'";

Michigan officials have designated the state’s small piece of Lake Erie an “impaired waterway.” That means it’s possible the federal government could enact stricter regulation to address the problem of algae blooms. We talk with Mike Shriberg of the National Wildlife Federation.

Last week, Michigan environmental officials designated the state’s tiny piece of Lake Erie an “impaired waterway.” That’s because algae blooms have become more common there and are damaging fish and other wildlife. The algae blooms are mainly the result of fertilizer runoff into the lake from farms.

In the summer of 2014, 400,000 people in the Toledo area were briefly unable to drink city water because algae had created unsafe levels of a toxin.

The “impaired” designation is important because it can lead to stronger federal action.

Current State talks with Michael Shriberg, Great Lakes regional executive director at the National Wildlife Federation in Ann Arbor.

Current State focuses on the environment every Tuesday.  Our efforts are supported by Michigan State University's Knight Center for Environmental Journalism. For more news of the Great Lakes environment, you can check out GreatLakesEcho.org.

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