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Ann Arbor Joins Harmful Algae Blooms Study

April 29, 2024 - Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti Township are teaming up to combat harmful algae blooms in Ford and Belleville lakes. They will jointly monitor water quality and share data to study ways to reduce these blooms, as outlined in a memorandum of understanding approved by the Ypsilanti Township Board of Trustees.

Blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, can produce toxins harmful to people and animals. These blooms require sunlight, slow-moving water, and nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus. Ann Arbor's Wastewater Treatment Plant, which treats sewage before it enters the Huron River, is undergoing upgrades to enhance the city's disinfection system.

The Washtenaw County Health Department has issued warnings about algae blooms in the past. Ypsilanti Township has existing measures in place, such as reducing phosphorus and artificial mixing, to mitigate blooms. They also employ a water monitoring buoy whose data will be shared with Ann Arbor. The goal is to explore new technologies and data interpretation methods to further control algae blooms.

Ann Arbor has 123,851 residents, spans 28.97 square miles and is frequently recognized as a foremost place to live, learn, work, thrive and visit. To keep up with City of Ann Arbor information, subscribe for email updates, and follow the city on Twitter and Facebook. The city's mission is to deliver exceptional services that sustain and enhance a vibrant, safe and diverse community.