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Environment & Energy

United States and Canada Agree to Limit Lake Erie Phosphorous Levels by 40 Percent

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WKSU

The United States and Canada have agreed to work to reduce the amount of phosphorous that makes its way into Lake Erie by 40 percent by 2025.

The two countries hope the reduction of the harmful nutrient will sustain healthy aquatic life and keep dangerous algae blooms to a minimum.

Kent State biology professor Darren Bade teaches courses and conducts research on Lake Erie.

He says a 40 percent reduction is lofty, but efforts from the mid-70’s aimed at removing phosphates from household products show it’s possible.

“It is a problem we have tackled before, and we’ve actually been successful, so I think it’s a very positive thing that we have in our back pocket to think about--how we’ve been successful with this before. We can probably do it again,” said Bade.

Phosphorous mainly makes its way into Lake Erie by way of agricultural runoff, city sewers and industrial discharge.