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Lake Whatcom Water Quality Issues
The 2010 Lake Whatcom Montioring Programs annual report which is compiled by scientists at Western Washington University has documented significant problems in the lake for more than two decades. Thirteen years ago the lake was listed as an “impaired waterbody” under the Clean Water Act because of a lack of oxygen.

The lack of oxygen is caused by algae growth which is fed by large quantities of phosphorus. The phosphorus comes from the soils and hillsides, but also comes from fertilizers and animal waste. In the summer of 2009 the city of Bellingham had to restrict water use because there was so much algae in the lake which was clogging the filters on the city water pipe and making it hard for water to get through.

 
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Water Hyacinth Saves a Young Boys Life - When a young boy went missing his family conducted a search, but were unable to locate the young boy. A couple of fishermen spotted Phong floating down the river -- 10 kilometers from his home -- using a tangle of water hyacinth as a buoy.


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