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RIDOH and DEM Recommend Lifting Advisories for Blue-green Algae

The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) and the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) recommend lifting the recreational advisories at Spectacle Pond in Cranston, Roger Williams Ponds in Providence, and Melville Upper and Lower Ponds in Portsmouth. Two recent surveys conducted at these sites found no evidence of cyanobacteria blooms. The recreational advisories were related to high levels of blue-green algae, also known as cyanobacteria.

While conditions at Blackamore Pond in Cranston have improved, some evidence of blue green algae persists. A significant bloom is still present at Almy Pond in Newport. Blue-green algae are generally less active as seasonal changes reduce light and temperature in the winter. However, the possibility of recurring blooms and/or toxins represent potential risks, even in iced-over conditions.

DEM monitoring has ended for the year and will resume next June. Regardless of season, the public is reminded to avoid contact with any body of water that is bright green or has a dense, floating scum. Blue-green algae blooms may look like green paint or thick pea soup.

For more information and a list of historical advisories, visit www.dem.ri.gov/bluegreen. Send reports of suspected blue-green algae blooms, along with photographs if possible, to DEM.OWRCyano@dem.ri.gov.

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