Green algae discovered in Fort Lauderdale canal

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - Concern is growing across South Florida after green algae was found growing in a canal in Fort Lauderdale.

Algae has been making headlines along the West Coast of Florida, but now it appears the algae has made its way to the East Coast.

“It’s completely saturated with green,” said Ronald Rotanelli with Seahorse Small Yacht Management. “Any more, it would be solid green.”

Rotanelli is in the business of maintaining yachts and said the algae is affecting his work.

“It’s just a soupy, green mess,” he said. “I gotta dive into this, and it really cuts down on my visibility.”

The blue-green algae is nearing full bloom in Fort Lauderdale.

“It’s as bad as I’ve seen,” Rotanelli said.

It’s bad, but not as bad as it could be. Residents on the West Coast of Florida have been seeing red algae. The red tide has been causing thousands of dead sea life to wash up along beaches.

As for the problem here at home, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection has done more than a dozen tests in Fort Lauderdale.

“Results to date for this specific sampling indicate low levels of toxins,” a report stated.

Blue-green algae are part of nature but things that run off into the water can feed the problem. It’s called nutrient pollution.

The State is now focused on storm and waste water infrastructure improvements to boost water quality and continued monitoring of possible sources of nutrient pollution.

For now, residents in Fort Lauderdale are stuck with a smelly mess that has turned canals into rivers of green goo.

“A few decades here, and I’ve never seen it this bad,” Rotanelli said.

To learn more about algae testing or to report a bloom, click here.

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