Hope you all had an awesome week. I wanted to introduce you to my neighbor…algae! We need algae in our waters for the water to stay clean and healthy. Without it, we don’t exist and I’ll tell you why. Algae, also known as phytoplankton, are tiny microscopic plants that start the marine food chain. We all start started from single cell algae, making it the most important organism on this planet so without it, nothing would exist. They are also the most important organisms because they produce the most oxygen and we need oxygen to survive!
Did you know there is a difference between good algae and harmful algae?
Here's the bad news: Algae are efficient at converting sunlight and nutrients into more algae so when too much algae is produced, algae blooms are formed. They have the potential to harm humans and our ecosystems. Nitrogen causes these harmful algae blooms. You may have noticed them by the discoloration in the water at times. Algae bloom reduces the oxygen and causes marine life to suffer exposing it to toxins and disease. Nitrogen in the blooms also produces nitrous oxide and this greenhouse gas is stronger than carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is a contributor to global warming and further degrades oceans by increasing acidity in the water as the oceans absorb more and more carbon.
Here's the good news: Did you know that it is estimated that 70-80% of the oxygen we breath comes from algae?! So don't be afraid of algae but in order to work best algae needs a balance as most things do in life. Keeping your waterways clean will keep life sustainable.
Here’s to algae….Cheers!
See you next weekend!