Welcome to Florida: An Algae Crisis


Ethan Jayne

Signs labeled “No Fishing” line the St. Luice Lock, an area impacted by the blue green algae.

Ethan Jayne, Staff Writer

Lines of dead fish on the sand, the smell of death reaching the shorelines.

The playful sounds of families enjoying the beach are no longer heard.

Lifeguards cover their mouths just to protect their own health.

Welcome to beautiful Florida, where local businesses struggle just to stay alive.

Welcome to beautiful Florida, where algae tanks local economies.

Welcome to beautiful Florida, home of the red tide and blue green algae crisis plaguing the state.  

Caution: Red Tide Present

This is not only a nightmare, it’s a reality.

Florida is going through an ecological disaster. Red tide has taken over the west coast, ruining trips meant to be peaceful. Even worse, the red tide has impacted the East coast. Beaches are closing, alarms are being raised. Signs stating “Caution: Red Tide Present” fill the coastlines.

Ethan Jayne
Signs line the St. Luice lock labeled “No Trespassing

Santaluces lies near these beaches that red tide has closed down. The bacteria, K. brevis, in the ocean is harmful not to only the organisms in the water, but the people visiting these local beaches.

Palm Beach County had ‘moderate’ to ‘high’ levels of red tide during the past month. Although it has gone away, there are still concerns that this red tide can come back to haunt the coastline once again.

Local beaches are not the only place to worry about, however. Popular beaches on the West coast, such as Ft Myers beach, are popular spots for Santaluces students during the summer such as senior Sabrina Mesa:

Ethan Jayne
Smaller amounts of algae can be seen around the locks of the river

“I would fish over there during the summer because the beaches were beautiful and I was able to walk farther out.”

Red tide has impacted these beaches, bringing dead fish ashore and interrupting vacations.

But red tide is not only the threat to the state of Florida currently. Blue green algae has impacted the treasure coast drastically, hurting local businesses all throughout the coast and the lake. The finishing industry has tanked. Business has slowed, and public pressure to stop the crisis has risen.

The disaster seems to have no end. The uncertainty that surrounds the crisis lingers in modern day Floridian politics. Welcome to Florida, home of the algae crisis.