New tool being used to kill algal blooms on the Caloosahatchee River

May 27, 2021

Read more: NBC2 News

LEE COUNTY, Fla. – There is a new tool being used to kill algal blooms on the Caloosahatchee River.

The South Florida Water Management District is now testing Lake Guard® Oxy on the river. They demonstrated what it can do to the bloom sitting at the Franklin Lock on Thursday. 

BlueGreen Water Technologies created the algae-fighting powder a few years ago. The company has been using the oxy on other lakes in Florida. So far, they said it’s helping clear toxic algae.

Dr. Waleed Nasser with BlueGreen said the hydrogen peroxide inside the powder targets and eliminates algae. The oxy can be dumped into the water from the shore or on a boat, and they said it rises to the top of the water where the most algae is.

Dr. Nasser said this doesn’t hurt any organisms in the water. He said cyanobacteria is the only thing sensitive to “oxidative stress.”

This is not a permanent solution for stopping blooms. Within an hour or two, the oxy can clear a bloom out of one area. But Dr. Nasser said if there is a source that keeps feeding booms to the same area, algae can make a comeback.

South Florida Water Management will test the oxy on other parts of the river for the next two weeks. They could decide to add this to their arsenal in the battle against algae if it works.

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