Bill Cracks down on Residential Lawn Fertilizers, Requires Bans and Buffers

The bill says nitrogen pollution has become a problem due to the volume of fertilizers applied to residential lawns.

Florida Algae Bloom 02

A bill aims to crack down on fertilizer use on residential lawns.

The bill would require each Florida county and municipal government to adopt the state's fertilizer law, and require residents to use only fertilizers containing 50 percent slow-release nitrogen on their lawns.

In addition, communities in an estuary runoff area would have to ban fertilizers a certain distance from water bodies and during the summer rainy season (from June 1 to September 30).

Nutrients—including phosphorus, but particularly nitrogen—feed toxic blue-green algae blooms caused by Lake Okeechobee discharges as well as nearshore red tide.

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