Posted by: Vicki Burns | June 21, 2016

$ 10 Million Prize Offered to Extract Phosphorus from Lakes and Estuaries

The Everglades Foundation in Florida has launched the George Barley Prize of $10 million to be awarded in 2020 to the inventor of a technology to withdraw phosphorus from lakes and estuaries in Florida that are polluting the Everglades. The problem of excess phosphorus that is causing the growth of often toxic algae is not just limited to Florida but is becoming a huge concern in many areas around the world, including Manitoba where I reside.
In Florida , Lake Okeechobee becomes the repository of much phosphorus from agricultural run-off and inadequate sewage treatment with the problem growing as heavy rainstorms intensify bringing more run-off into the lake and ultimately into the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Rivers. Blue-green algae takes over the rivers causing fish kills and dangers for human health.


Caloosahatchee Algae Bloom

In Canada we have numerous lakes and rivers that are plagued by blue-green algae some of which contains dangerous toxins. Lake Winnipeg has become well known for this challenge but it is joined by many other lakes across the country suffering from the same problem. So the results of this $10 million dollar competition could be a huge help to many of our Canadian lakes .
I am surprised to see that to date, there is only one competitor from Canada out of the 49 entries, Noble Purification Inc. out of Peterborough, Ontario. $10 million should be quite an incentive to encourage others to get involved in this competition. Our lakes and rivers will appreciate all the help they can get.


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