What's Causing Drinking Water from Lake Lanier to Smell?

Reprinted from 11-Alive News

The Chattahoochee Riverkeeper says tests done last year show Lake Lanier has its highest level of algae, also known as chlorophyll, in 20 years. Those algae blooms affect the smell and taste of water that comes from the lake, even after processing at a water treatment plant.

"Parts of Gwinnett, Forsyth, and Hall County pull water straight from Lanier to treat and distribute for drinking," said Dale Caldwell, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper Headwaters Director.

The Riverkeeper says excess nutrients flowing into the lake are the reason for the algae blooms. The nutrients come from runoffs from sewage treatment plants, stormwater, farming and industrial operations.

“The high algae levels that we saw in 2019 indicate that we need to do a better job of controlling the amount of nutrients flowing into the lake,” said Cardwell.

The recent rains have exacerbated the problem. More rain is expected in this week’s forecast.

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Photo by Austin Steele for Gainesville Times.