Thursday, May 15, 2014
 

 

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Toxic algae could contaminate drinking water and affect summer rec, says Schumer

WASHINGTON – Toxic blue-green algae is set to rear its ugly head again this summer in 27 lakes in the Hudson Valley.

That algae creates cyanotoxins, which can make people sick if they drink the water, ingest some while swimming or even get it on their skin.

US Senator Charles Schumer recommends that the US EPA should get more involved in ridding the algae from waterways around the nation.

“EPA should issue guidance and recommendations to local water treatment plants on how to best test for and treat these cyanotoxins,” Schumer said on Wednesday.  “Right now they are only listed on the potential contaminants list. EPA has the power to issue regulation and guidance for official contaminants and their expertise is invaluable, so they should do so right away.”

The senator also said the EPA should develop a water quality criteria for cyanotoxins in water.

Schumer said close to 100 upstate lakes were found to have the blue-green algae blooms over the past two years.