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Environment


Farmers get new assistance in managing runoff
In an effort to keep fertilizer out of public waterways, The U.S. Department of Agriculture is offering more grant money to farmers.
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


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Andy Chow
 
Lake Erie shorefront
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Chemicals found in fertilizer and manure are key contributors to toxic algae growth. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is now offering more grant money to encourage farmers to keep those chemicals out of the public waterways. Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports.
LISTEN: Millions in grant money available to keep toxins out of water

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More than $17 million is up for grabs to help farmers in the western Lake Erie basin cut down on the amount of nutrients running off their land. 

The nutrient management effort garnered national attention after nearly half a million people in Toledo were banned from drinking the water, which appeared to turn bright green from toxins. 

Larry Antosh with the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation says the federal funds will be a big help, but warns to not expect big changes right away. 

“These things will make a difference. But it’s not going to be an instantaneous change just because natural systems take time to readjust and re-equilibrate to a changing management scenario," Antosh said.

State lawmakers have said legislation that requires better nutrient management will be a priority this year. 


 
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