The Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC) applauded the proactive efforts of the U.S. Representative Marcy Kaptur in her Sept. 7 letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), urging the agency to take stronger action to combat the recurring toxic algal blooms in Western Lake Erie caused by agricultural pollution.
The U.S. EPA is currently reviewing Ohio’s plan for reducing pollution in the Maumee River Basin.
ELPC’s Executive Director, Howard Learner, emphasized the critical need for a “pollution diet” or Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) plan, specifically targeting Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus (DRP) as the pollutant responsible for fueling toxic algal blooms in Lake Erie.
Learner praised Rep. Kaptur’s recognition of the importance of this approach, stating that when properly developed and implemented, TMDLs can be powerful tools for restoring impaired water bodies.
“The Environmental Law & Policy Center greatly appreciates Rep. Kaptur’s letter to the U.S. EPA. The U.S. EPA now must step up and meet its responsibilities to achieve a clean and safe Lake Erie because the Ohio EPA has failed to do its job well,” Learner said.
Lake Erie’s recurring toxic algal blooms have been a long-standing concern, harming safe water and threatening the health of the region’s residents and ecosystems. Kaptur and Lerner are calling for a more comprehensive plan which they say is needed to effectively address the issue and ensure the well-being of those who rely on and enjoy Lake Erie.