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Senate Considers Federal Help For Communities Hit With Toxic Algae

An algae bloom at Central Marine in August 2016. Photo by Amy Green

Legislation making its way on Capitol Hill could help Florida communities hit by toxic algae blooms.

The Senate Commerce Committee approved the measure that for the first time would make federal funding available to communities and states affected by toxic algae blooms.

The legislation would grant authority to NOAA and the Environmental Protection Agency to declare the blooms nationally significant, opening access to funding.

Toxic algae blooms last year on Florida’s east and west coasts including in the Indian River Lagoon prompted emergency declarations in four counties.

The blooms are a growing problem. A 2014 occurrence in Lake Erie disrupted the drinking water for more than 200,000 in Toledo, Ohio, shutting down the city.


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Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment and climate change at WMFE News. She is an award-winning journalist and author whose extensive reporting on the Everglades is featured in the book MOVING WATER, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and podcast DRAINED, available wherever you get your podcasts. Amy’s ... Read Full Bio »