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Harmful Algae in Oklahoma Lakes

A harmful algae is showing up in lakes around Oklahoma. The algae is called Blue Green Algae and it’s very harmful to people and animals. The algae creates endotoxins, hepatoxins and neurotoxins. Current lakes in Oklahoma that the algae has been found in include, Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees, Keystone, Fort Gibson, Lake Tenkiller, and Lake Eufaula.

The Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) says “when in doubt stay out.” You can’t know for sure what kind of algae a bloom is just by looking so if algae is present it’s best to stay out of the water and to also keep pets and livestock away. The DEQ also asks that if you see an algae bloom that looks like thick pea soup; green paint; bluish, brownish or reddish- green paint, please report it to the DEQ.

You can help prevent this toxic algae by not using products that contain phosphorous. Some products you may have in your home that can contain phosphorous include:

  • Automatic Dishwasher Detergent
  • Cleaners
  • Fertilizer

To help avoid these products use natural cleaning products, phosphorous free, natural fertilizers, and phosphorous-free automatic dishwasher detergent, which is becoming very common as many states have outlawed automatic dishwasher detergent containing phosphorous.

For more information visit the DEQ’s website.

Photos are all property of the Tulsa District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


About the Author


Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and consultant. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.


 

 

 

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Lisa Sharp is the founder of Green Oklahoma. She is passionate about the environment and improving Oklahoma for future generations. She also writes on her personal blog Retro Housewife Goes Green.
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Comments

  1. Pat Kelley says:

    There’s a “green” solution to algae cleanup. Aerators driven by vertical axis wind turbines can circulate the water, oxygenating it and killing the algae. I’m in the process of contacting environmental funds to see if we can install aerators in one or more of these lakes to demonstrate the process. Any advice on who best to contact in the state offices to coordinate this effort would help.

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