Lake Hopatcong closure seen as wake-up call for state’s watersheds

Algae, cyanobacteria

TOM JOHNSON / NJ SPOTLIGHT – For some conservationists, the closure of the state’s largest and most important recreational lake due to harmful algae blooms is a wake-up call to both the public and policymakers to step up protections of New Jersey’s watersheds.

After a massive bloom of blue-green algae, also known as cyanobacteria, the state Department of Environmental Protection closed Lake Hopatcong on June 27, shutting down its beaches and warning against any contact with the water.

It is not the only instance of what the agency calls Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB), a sudden bloom of blue-green algae, a normal part of a healthy aquatic environment, that can suddenly explode into a widespread bloom …

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