OEC In the News

Keep up with media coverage of the OEC and the issues that are important to you.

Changes target toxic algae in western Lake Erie

July 5, 2015
Ohio officials announced last week that they will use $12 million from the federal government as incentives for farmers who plant cover crops or grass filter strips or add the drainage systems. What isn't known yet is whether they will make a big impact. "That's going to have to come soon for us to make some credible measurements back to the public and say the money we've spent has been worth it," Butler said. The new money will put over 100,000 acres in Ohio into conservation practices.

Solid waste management evolves

June 15, 2015
When Ohio passed its first solid waste law in the 1960s, garbage management consisted of more than 1,300 smelly, open dumps, according to the Ohio Environmental Council. The Ohio Environmental ProtectionAgency and local health departments shut down those dumps and replaced them with 

States Agree to Cut Pollutants Behind Lake Erie Algae

June 15, 2015
Adam Rissien, the Ohio Environmental Council's director of agricultural and water policy, said the agreement will give a real opportunity to improve water quality. "It's unfortunate, though, that Indiana chose not to join in this cooperative spirit since the state also contributes phosphorus to Lake Erie," he said.

Water from Dublin Road plant should not be given to infants, pregnant women

June 15, 2015
“Agricultural pollution is a problem here in Columbus,” said Adam Rissien, director of agricultural and water policy at the Ohio Environmental Council. “It’s time we did something more about it.”

To reduce algae blooms in Lake Erie, ban open-lake dumping

June 14, 2015
Editorial by Nathan Johnson, OEC Staff Attorney The practice of dumping river and harbor sediments into Lake Erie contributes to Ohio’s toxic algae menace. It has to end. Sediments from Toledo Harbor are dredged each year to allow for continued shipping at Ohio’s busiest port. Disposing of these sediments in Lake Erie can exacerbate harmful algal blooms. The phosphorus in these sediments is likely not enough to start a bloom, but it can sustain toxic blooms and even make them grow.

Ohio beaches seeing high levels of bacteria contamination

June 11, 2015
“Try to limit the amount of water that you get in your mouth, keep your head above water, be mindful of whether your kids should really go into those waters, and certainly, absolutely shower within 24 hours,” said Meyer.  

Senate budget bill moves farm programs around

June 9, 2015
Adam Rissien, director of agriculture and water policy for the Ohio Environmental Council, said his group doesn't care about the programs being moved around but objects to what he sees as a weakening of enforcement for farm pollution rules.   The proposed new rules in the Senate bill introduce so many delays in enforcement of the Agricultural Pollution Abatement Program that it's unlikely anyone would actually be convicted of violating the rules, the OEC argues in a memo to lawmakers.

Latta bill seeks to ban open lake dumping in the Great Lakes

April 23, 2015
"Representative Latta is right to declare an end to the open-season of dumping dredged sediments into Lake Erie," said Kristy Meyer, managing director of Agricultural, Health & Clean Water Programs for the Ohio Environmental Council. "Dumping sediments into the open waters of the Great Lakes is an archaic practice. If these sediments are clean enough to dump into the Lakes, then they are clean enough to reuse for beneficial purposes."

Spring rains taking fertilizer to toxic algae in Ohio lakes

April 13, 2015
“If everything stays the same, we’ll probably have a pretty average year, although why should we be OK with the harmful algal blooms that we had last year?” said Kristy Meyer, managing director of agricultural, health and clean-water programs at the Ohio Environmental Council, an advocacy group.

Treatment plants to track algal bloom indicator

April 13, 2015
Many wastewater treatment plants are monitored now for total phosphorus, but the dissolved phosphorus monitoring requirement is new, said Kristy Meyer, managing director for agricultural, health and clean water programs at the Ohio Environmental Council. Dissolved reactive phosphorus, also known as soluble reactive phosphorus, is defined as the phosphorus that is 100 percent available for a plant to use, she said. Dissolved reactive phosphorus amounts have been closely identified with the size of harmful algal blooms, she explained.