Federal grant supports Lake Erie algae bloom warning system

FILE - In this Aug. 3, 2014, file photo, the City of Toledo water intake crib is surrounded by algae in Lake Erie, off the shore of Curtice, Ohio. Groups working to solve Lake Erie’s algae outbreaks agree that a key step will be targeting areas that are sending much of the algae-feeding phosphorus into the lake. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari, File)

A federal grant will help improve a system that provides early warnings about harmful algae blooms in Lake Erie.

U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell of Michigan says the Great Lakes Observing System Regional Association in Ann Arbor will receive $585,702 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The association brings together organizations leading the annual monitoring, reporting, and dissemination of harmful algae data. Also involved are representatives of affected user groups, especially drinking water treatment plant operators.

Improvements to the observing system funded by the grant will provide water managers and researchers with timely and user-friendly access to critical monitoring data during future blooms.

That will help them make informed decisions about activities and resources affected by algae and the toxins they sometimes generate.

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