Wood Lake algae bloom low risk to public

In this Aug. 3, 2014 file photo, an algae bloom covers Lake Erie near the City of Toledo water intake crib about 2.5 miles off the shore of Curtice, Ohio. (Haraz N. Ghanbari / The Canadian Press)

Press release:

 Interior Health, the District of Lake Country and the Regional District of Central Okanagan are monitoring a large algae bloom on Wood Lake. While the bloom contains blue-green algae, testing indicates the risk to the public remains low. The water is considered safe for use.

Visitors and residents are reminded not to drink or cook using untreated water directly from lakes, ponds or wetlands due to the risk of waterborne illness. Boiling the water will not remove any toxins from blue-green algae blooms. Provide pets and livestock with an alternative source of drinking water where there are active algae blooms, as they can be sensitive to toxins.

Algae blooms are naturally occurring throughout B.C. Blooms may vary in colour from blue, green, brown, yellow, orange to red and appear like foam, scum, mats on surface or soup. Some algae blooms may also smell unpleasant. Algae blooms containing cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) may produce harmful toxins.

Additional Information on Cyanobacteria Blooms is available at HealthLinkBC, https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthlinkbc-files/blue-green-algae

Additional information on algae is available on Ministry of Environment’s Algae Watch website: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/environment/air-land-water/water/water-quality/algae-watch