Reducing cyanotoxins tops agenda at Cleveland water management conference

ESL will present new data on controlling harmful algal blooms and reducing cyanotoxins in Ohio and surrounding states.

CLEVELAND – Water management professionals will meet in Cleveland this month to discuss new ways to control harmful algal blooms (HABs) caused by cyanobacteria. Two sessions on HAB control top the agenda at the annual meeting of the Midwest Aquatic Plant Management Society. The topic is timely with Lake Erie recovering from its third largest cyanobacteria bloom on record.

High concentrations of phosphorus from the Maumee River watershed fueled the toxic bloom. According to a report by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), heavy rains flushed phosphorus-rich fertilizer from nearby farms into the river. Wastewater and other urban runoff from the Cuyahoga River in the Cleveland-Akron area increased the region’s HAB woes.

While Ohio and other states work to control the causes of HABs, water treatment plants struggle to manage larger and more toxic blooms. “Conventional wisdom says that any treatment causes cyanobacteria cells to rupture catastrophically, spilling toxins,” said Dr. David Hammond, Senior Scientist at Earth Science Laboratories (ESL). “Real-world case studies suggest that a particular formulation of copper controls cyanobacteria without significantly raising toxin concentrations.”

Hammond will attend the MAPMS conference to present data from case studies involving EarthTec®, an advanced, liquid-copper algaecide. EarthTec kills cyanobacteria and reduces chemicals that produce undesirable taste and odor. Hammond will also be available to discuss the Cyanobacteria Rapid Response Program. The program offers free consultation and installation services to water treatment plants.

More information on the MAPMS Annual Conference can be found at

Earth Science Laboratories Inc. manufactures advanced water treatment products for municipal and agricultural uses. EarthTec is EPA registered and NSF Certified to ANSI Standard 60 for use in drinking water. It is approved for use in open waters and pipelines. Information about EarthTec and the Cyanobacteria Response Program is available at