Water-Related News

Alarming amount of human waste found in Charlotte County water

CHARLOTTE COUNTY – A new study of the Charlotte Harbor estuary system found an alarming amount of pollution from human waste in the waterways.

It's also contributing to all the red tide seen in recent weeks on Charlotte County beaches.

Hired by Charlotte County, Dr. Brian Lapointe of Florida Atlantic University just completed the study showing that nutrients from human waste may be helping the algae grow

"The red tide blooms are being supported by wastewater nitrogen,” Lapointe explained. “The runoff from land, including septic tanks.”

North Charlotte Harbor showed the highest amount of pollution.

"Eventually there will be so much fecal contamination in the water,” said Lapointe, “you'll have to avoid contact with the water.”

Thankfully, Charlotte Harbor is nowhere near that point, but Lapointe urged that the county continues to get more folks off of septic systems.

The county has taken significant steps in expanding its sewer system, but it's been costly for many folks.