Public comment sought on CDC plan to study lake

ATLANTA — The Centers for Disease Control is seeking public comment on a proposed study of persons exposed to algae in Lake Okeechobee. CDC-2019-0079, published Sept. 17 in the Federal Register, proposes a collection project titled “Aerosols from cyanobacterial blooms: Exposures and health effects in a highly exposed population.” CDC will accept written comments up […]

Algae task force considers recommendations

NAPLES — The Department of Environmental Protection Blue Green Algae Task Force worked on recommendations on Basin Management Action Plans (BMAPs), Best Management Practices (BMPs), septic systems, sewage spills and stormwater storage and treatment at their Sept. 25 meeting at Florida Gulf Coast University. BMAPsThe task force noted the BMAPs have been hindered by local […]

Blue-green algal blooms bring health risks

NAPLES — “We know that blue-green algae isn’t just something that is in the water. It is something that can affect our health. We’re dealing with old organisms that go back almost 3.5 billion years,” explained Florida Surgeon General Dr. Scott Rivkees at the Sept. 24 meeting of the Department of Environmental Protection Blue Green […]

FDEP monitors algae in area lakes and waterways

LAKE OKEECHOBEE — What effect will the wind and rain from Hurricane Dorian have on Lake Okeechobee? It’s too soon to tell. The winds and rain associated with Hurricane Dorian made it impossible for NOAA to get reliable satellite images. The most recent available image is from Sept. 1, and NOAA notes that it may […]

Algae task force considers nutrients from septic tanks

FORT PIERCE — The Blue-Green Algae Task Force considered a human source of nutrient loads into Florida’s lakes and waterways at their Aug. 1 meeting. They reviewed the nutrient load from septic tanks and leaks and overflows from sewage systems. Dr. Eb Roeder of the Florida Department of Health explained septic tanks are meant as […]

Algae task force meets Thursday

FORT PIERCE — The Blue Green Algae Task Force will discuss innovative technologies to treat, prevent, reduce or eliminate Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) at its next meeting. Also on the agenda are septic tank regulations and discussion of a few sewer overflow impacts and causes. The task force will meet Thursday, Aug. 1, in the […]

Project could turn algae into fuel

MOORE HAVEN — Can the algae in Lake Okeechobee be extracted and turned into biofuel? An experiment conducted near the Moore Haven lock in July indicates this could be a possibility. Dr. Martin Page, project manager with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said the 2018 WRDA provided the corps with some funding for research […]

FDEP is testing algal blooms as they pop up

OKEECHOBEE — As the summer heat continues, the lake remains below 12 feet above sea level, and blooms of algae and cyanobacteria (called blue green algae, although it is not actually algae) are common. The heat combined with little movement of water create conditions conducive to the rapid reproduction of the microscopic organisms into “blooms.” […]

FDEP tracks toxic algae

OKEECHOBEE — Low water levels in Lake Okeechobee combined with the summer heat set the stage for cyanobacteria (blue green algae) blooms in the Big O this summer. The lake is still recovering from the massive inflow of nutrients in 2017 from Hurricane Irma. Over the past week, the algal bloom on Lake Okeechobee at […]

Task force wants more lake testing

FORT MYERS — Comprehensive testing of the lake water and sediment is needed in order to find the most efficient ways to reduce the blue green algal blooms in Lake Okeechobee, according to discussion at the Blue Green Algae Task Force’s second meeting, held July 1 in Fort Myers. “The challenges with regard to water […]