Back in 2018 this part of the state suffered two serious harmful algal blooms at the same time. The red tide bloom offshore met the blue-green algae bloom which stretched from the Caloosahatchee River estuary all the way to Lake Okeechobee. Both kinds of algae produce toxins that are known to be harmful to humans. But, despite that knowledge, there was not a robust effort by the Florida Department of Health to warn the public about those risks, particularly when it came to the blue-green algae.
Now, two years later, the Florida Department of Health in Lee County has recently been issuing health advisories in response to blue-green algae blooms in three Cape Coral canals. We talk with Calusa Waterkeeper, John Cassani, to discuss this new outreach effort, and get the current state of our local waters.