More than 30 lakes in New Jersey were affected by blooms of harmful algae in 2019. And already this summer, harmful algae have made an unwelcome appearance at several lakes. The state Department of Environmental Protection has just announced it’s awarding $1 million for the development of lake and watershed restoration plans to mitigate the harmful blooms. It’s part of an overall DEP allotment of $3.5 million for projects to reduce the impact of so-called nonpoint source pollution on waterways; nonpoint pollution comes from general runoff, as opposed to point-source pollution, which comes from specific sources like industry or water-treatment plants.
In March, the DEP announced $2.5 million in grants to nine projects around the state “designed to evaluate the effectiveness of various treatment and prevention technologies, including filtration systems, products to neutralize bloom-causing nutrients, high-tech oxygen bubblers, even floating wetland islands.”