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Proposed rule for farms aims to improve Lake Erie

Nov 30, 2014

TOLEDO, Ohio  - Ohio's lawmakers are moving toward taking on the algae that has plagued Lake Erie in recent years.

Western Lake Erie turns green from cyanobacteria blooms.
Credit Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

  New legislation recently approved in the state House would ban farmers in much of northwestern Ohio from spreading manure on frozen or saturated fields.

  Farmers also would need to hold off if heavy rains are in the forecast. Another provision would set new rules on the dumping of dredged sediment in the lake.

  Both the livestock manure and the dredging are thought to contribute to the algae blooms that produce the kind of dangerous toxins that left residents around Toledo and in southeastern Michigan without water for two days in August.

  The proposals addressing the algae problem still need approval from the Ohio Senate and Ohio's governor.