Environmental groups sue Army Corps to stop toxic algae destruction

A green-goopy nightmare Tom Podgorny fears could only get worse after seeing algae off his dock in North Fort Myers return last month.

“Not only does that concern me as a homeowner and as a single parent of two kids,” Podgorny said, “I think that’s an economic disaster.”

To stop toxic algae from causing more destruction to our local waterways, environmental groups are taking the Army Corps to court.

John Cassani, who works with the Calusa Waterkeeper, said a crucial claim in the lawsuit is that federal agents need to change the schedule of the Lake Okeechobee releases.

“Most of the information that they’re basing their policy on and their revision process on is information that’s maybe a decade or longer older,” Cassani said. “We see massive moralities to endangered species.”

Another claim is it causes harmful effects to human health, like what Annie Frey, who is a registered nurse, saw last summer in Lee County.

”We had a lot of people coming in with severe allergy type respiratory issues and stuff,” Frey said. “They couldn’t attribute it to anything but the algae.”

”We can’t have our waters looking the way they’ve looked and have them being unsafe,” Podgorny said.

Reporter:Gina Tomlinson
Writer:Michael Mora
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