Spike in Algae Growth Sparks Concerns - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Spike in Algae Growth Sparks Concerns

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WEST OCEAN CITY, Md.- Some fishermen believe algae in Maryland Coastal Bays has gotten out of control, clogging fishing nets, rods and engines, and even worse some experts believe the large amount of algae is sucking up all of the oxygen, leaving some flounder, clams and crabs on its last breath.

"I can see were they can say algae may be worse, but the worse thing to happen to the flounder fish this year was water temperature," said fishermen 'Big Bird.'

The Maryland Coastal Bay Program's director Dave Wilson said, "warm weather fuels the problem with macro algae." Warm weather is just one of many factors in this year's algae spike, according to Wilson.

"So when it rains, all of this water goes into this area and flies out into the coastal bays," he said. Wilson lays much of the blame on storm water and sewer run off. He believes it all ends up in coastal bays, feeding the algae problem.

"A lot of it could be frustrating," said James Crane, of West Ocean City. "You're going to spend half a day picking it off your line."

Which is why Wilson said state lawmakers are pushing a storm water utility fee. He says the money would go toward clean water projects.

"People call it the rain tax. But you can call it what you want, what it is,is a way to keep these nutrients from going into the systems rapidly, it's a big problem we have."

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