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Studies show the Detroit River does contribute a large share

Toxic algae in Lake Erie

buy canada goose jacket Hundreds of thousands of people in Toledo, Ohio, and nearby southeastern Michigan were unable to use tap water from Saturday until Monday morning because of unsafe levels of a contaminant called microcystin in Lake Erie. Here are questions and answers about the situation: buy canada goose jacket

Q. What is microcystin?

Canada Goose Jackets A. A toxin produced by microcystis, a type of blue green algae, or cyanobacteria. Only certain species of blue green Canada Goose Outlet algae form toxins, for reasons that aren’t fully understood. canada goose outlet Canada Goose Jackets

buy canada goose jacket cheap Q. How dangerous is it? buy canada goose jacket cheap

Canada Goose Parka A. Microcystin can produce hives or blisters from direct contact with the skin. Swallowing it can cause headaches, fever, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Large scale ingestion can damage the liver. Canada Goose Parka

Canada Goose online Q. Why is it such a big problem in Lake Erie? Canada Goose online

A. Algae can be found canada goose coats in virtually any lake. But Erie is the canada goose black friday sale shallowest and warmest of the Great Lakes its average depth is 62 feet making it the most biologically productive. It is loaded with nitrogen and phosphorus, the primary nutrients of algae. Phosphorus levels are especially important in determining how much algae form in a water body.

Q. Are http://www.mycanadagoosejacket.org farms the primary source of the phosphorus that causes blue green algae?

canada goose clearance That canada goose factory sale question canada goose uk black friday leads to lots of finger pointing. Since then, the report said, the leading culprit is runoff from canada goose clearance sale farm fields, lawns, city streets and parking lots. Even deposition from the atmosphere makes a small contribution. canada goose clearance

canadian goose jacket Farm groups contend Canada Goose Online municipal sewage remains a big factor particularly the Detroit treatment plant, which discharges into two Lake Erie tributary rivers. Studies show the Detroit River does contribute a large share of the canada goose coats on sale lake’s phosphorus, although concentrations are significantly higher in the Maumee River, which drains agricultural areas of northwestern Ohio and flows into Lake Erie at Toledo. canadian goose jacket

cheap Canada Goose Q. Does Lake Erie have a history of algae pollution? cheap Canada Goose

A. Some experts described Erie as virtually sterile in the 1960s, partly because of « dead zones » caused by decomposition of algae that sucked oxygen from the canada goose water, leading to repeated fish kills. Improvements in sewage treatment buy canada goose jacket cheap and limits on phosphorus in detergents boosted water quality. But the blue green algae that generate microcystin turned up in the mid 1990s, and the problem has worsened. In summer canada goose clearance 2011, the lake’s largest bloom on record coated nearly 20 percent Canada Goose Parka of Erie’s surface.

Canada Goose sale Q. What caused recent outbreaks, and why are they more severe than before? Canada Goose sale

canada goose store A. Scientists believe three factors make the present situation different. canada goose store

canada goose black friday sale First, a greater portion of Canada Goose sale the phosphorus washing into the lake is « dissolved reactive phosphorus » the form that stimulates algae growth the most. That may be explained by changes in cheap canada goose uk agricultural practices. Farmers have made greater use of « no till » cultivation and application of manure and chemical fertilizers directly onto the land’s surface, instead of working them into the soil as before. That makes it easier for the phosphorus they contain to flow directly into creeks that feed the lake and dissolve there instead of interacting canada goose uk shop with the soil. canada goose black friday sale

canada goose coats on sale Climate change may be playing a role by generating more severe rainstorms, which promote farm runoff and sewer overflows, says Gary Fahnenstiel, a former NOAA scientist and algae expert. It also elevates water temperatures near the lake uk canada goose outlet surface and prolongs periods of separation between cold and warm water levels, promoting algae growth. canada goose coats on sale

Canada Goose Outlet Finally, invasive zebra and quagga mussels that arrived in the 1980s have gobbled up beneficial types of algae that support aquatic food Canada Goose Coats On Sale chains, while rejecting harmful blue green algae. Canada Goose Outlet

Q. Do other Great Lakes have algae problems?

canada goose coats A. Lake Huron’s Saginaw Bay and Lake Michigan’s Green Bay also are plagued by various types of nuisance algae, including microcystis. But in the past decade, Lake Erie’s microcystis blooms have been much more severe. canada goose coats

canada goose deals Q. What can uk canada goose be done to prevent toxic blue green algae growth? canada goose deals

A. The most practical solution is to reduce phosphorus levels, said Don Scavia, a University of Michigan canada goose store scientist. The commission report called for setting specific targets for reducing phosphorus runoff, including cheap Canada Goose a 39 percent decline on the Canada Goose Jackets western end of Lake Erie.

canada goose To accomplish canada goose uk outlet that, the report said farmers should be required to use less phosphorus on fields, improve drainage systems and avoid fertilizer application during winter, when it is likely to remain atop frozen canadian goose jacket ground instead of sinking in. It also suggested linking farmers’ willingness to adopt such practices to the availability and cost of taxpayer subsidized crop insurance. Also encouraged were stepped up inspections of septic systems, greater use of « green infrastructure » such as rain gardens and engineered wetlands in urban areas, and banning use of phosphorus fertilizers for lawn care in states that haven’t already done so canada goose.