Resolution considered to end fertilizer use in Venice

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Green lawns or blue water? That’s the choice on the docket this morning in Venice as the city council considers a resolution to stop the use of fertilizers. 

The resolution is in response to the toxic red tide bloom that has already killed off hundreds of thousands of fish and marine animals. Since August, Florida Fish and Wildlife officials have removed dozens of sick or dying dolphins from Sarasota waterways. Venice has been the epicenter of the epidemic. Nine dead bottlenose dolphins washed ashore in Venice over a three day period in early August. 

Venice officials and residents alike are desperate to deter the spread of the toxic algae bloom that continues to plague Venice Beach. 

Some believe banning fertilizers and switching over to native plans can play a key role in stopping red tide, and the city mayor agrees. On Tuesday morning, he’ll present a resolution encouraging the end of fertilizer use year-round. 

A ban prohibiting the use of fertilizers during Florida’s rainy season is already in place from June 1 through September 30. 

Red tide is a naturally occurring algae but scientists say leaching and run off of nutrients from fertilizers can contribute to the nitrogen and phosphorus pollution within the area waterways, which can end up feeding toxic algae blooms.  

If passed the resolution would go into effect upon adoption.