EPA won’t call Lake Erie’s waters in Ohio impaired
TOLEDO, OHIO — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency won’t declare Ohio’s western end of Lake Erie impaired by toxic algae, siding with state regulators who say they are making progress in tackling the problem.
Monday’s decision means Ohio will continue to take the lead in fighting the algae blooms that in recent years have fouled drinking water in the shallowest of the Great Lakes. The EPA said it recognizes the state’s ongoing efforts to reduce pollution feeding the algae.
Several environmental groups have been pushing the EPA to make the impaired watershed designation and pave the way for increased pollution regulations. Those groups last month sued the EPA to force it to make a decision on whether the western part of the lake should be declared impaired under the Clean Water Act.