Toxic Algae Changes Game For W.Va. Water Quality

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Charleston, W.Va. (AP) -- A state official says a toxic algae bloom blamed for killing thousands of fish in a northern West Virginia stream could force the state to change how it regulates water quality.

Scott Mandirola, interim director of the Department of Environmental Protection's waste and water office, told lawmakers Thursday that the discovery of golden algae in the Dunkard Creek watershed is a game changer.

He says regulators still don't know how the algae came to be in the creek, or how to prevent future outbreaks.

The algae was first discovered in Texas in 1985.

DEP has been looking at how discharges from mines in Dunkard Creek may have created conditions to promote the algae's growth.

The bloom has killed everything in the creek except for water bugs.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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