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Water Management Associations
Roundup Contributes to Algal Blooms
Drs. R. Michael McKay and George Bullerjahn of Bowling Green State University are studying the impact of glyphosate on the strains of blue-green algae found in Lake Erie.

Lake Erie, like many other waterways have been experiencing harmful blue-green algal blooms in recent years. Phosphorus has long been known to act as fuel to blue-green algae, and efforts to limit phosphorus loading in the Lake Erie watershed in the 1970s helped reduce algal blooms. However, the last 15 years have seen an increase in the growth of toxic blooms, contributing to an ever bigger Dead Zone in the lake’s Central Basin and massive fish kills each summer.

Glyphosate, a phosphonate and the main ingredient in the commonly used herbicide, Roundup is believed to be a phosphorus source causing the more recent blooms. Roundup is getting into the watershed at peak farming application times, particularly in the spring.

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Water Solider Could be Added to Michigan Prohibited Plant List - Water soldier was identified as one of the 16 “least-wanted species” aquatic invasive species at the 2013 meeting of the Council of Great Lakes Governors and Canadian Premiers. Prevention of new invasive species and stopping the spread of existing invasive species are considered vital for limiting the impacts on Michigan’s ecology, economy and natural resources.

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