FGCU seeks $9 million for red tide research

Captain Billy Norris is finally booking charter trips again now that red tide is keeping away from his boat in Bonita Springs.

It was just months ago that piles of stinky dead fish on the beaches scared business away.

Red tide has had a massive impact on Southwest Florida. It forced researchers from Florida Gulf Coast University to devote time to the crisis. But now, the university wants to commit more resources toward exploring red tide’s impact on our health and environment.

The university seeks $9 million from the state.

Mike Parson, an FGCU marine science professor, said the funds would help make considerable progress in addressing the red tide crisis in Southwest Florida.

The money will be allocated to training students how to do various analyses and how to interpret the data. The funds will also support new hires, equipment and lab renovations to answer critical questions red tide researchers have been puzzling over.

The work will be done at a Bonita Springs lab where researchers are already making progress, Parsons said. “We’re at ground zero for this. Any kind of funding is really going to move things forward.”

Reporter:Gina Tomlinson
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