Michigan plan seeks less pollution causing Lake Erie algae

FILE- This Aug. 3, 2014 file photo shows Algae near the City of Toledo water intake crib, in Lake Erie, about 2.5 miles off the shore of Curtice, Ohio. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari, File)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan officials have released a tentative plan for reducing nutrient pollution that causes ugly and potentially toxic algal blooms in western Lake Erie.

The U.S. and Canada have agreed to seek a 40 percent cut in phosphorus flows into the lake by 2025. Phosphorus feeds algae-like bacteria that forced a temporary tap-water shutdown in Toledo, Ohio, and southeastern Michigan in 2014.

Michigan’s plan released Tuesday proposes steps for achieving the phosphorus cutbacks.

They include continuing to reduce discharges from sewage treatment plants and studying causes of harmful algal blooms.

Also suggested are encouraging farmers to use best-management practices that prevent manure and fertilizer runoff from flowing into tributary streams, as well as stream measurements to document how well the efforts are working.

The draft is available for review at http://www.michigan.gov/deqgreatlakes.