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EPA shares new cyanotoxin recommendations

Jeff Reutter
Ohio State University

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says it wants to keep Americans safe while swimming. So it's announced new recommendations for two cyanotoxins in recreational bodies of water. 

Cyanotoxins are produced by bacteria blooms that have become increasingly common in places like western Lake Erie. Exposure to them at unsafe amounts can cause upset stomachs and liver and kidney damage.

"We take these issues of algae blooms, cyanotoxins, cyanobacteria ... very seriously," said Scott Dean, spokesman for the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy. "So, we are looking forward to continuing to collaborate with the EPA, looking at their new recommendations to see if they can make our already very strict standards better."

States can choose to adopt the EPA recommendations for water quality standards and a swimming advisory. "Michigan already has some very strict water quality standards, not only for recreational water but for drinking water" Dean says, "and so we're going to have to look at these very closely and determine if they can make our already very strict standards better."

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