From the Columbus Dispatch:
Ohio’s push to keep farm pollution out of Grand Lake St. Marys has Indiana environmentalists worried that the Hoosier State will become a dumping ground for Buckeye State manure.
Manure that washes off farms in Mercer and Auglaize counties in western Ohio during rainstorms is blamed for the toxic blue-green algae that grew so thick in the 13,000-acre lake this summer that the state warned people not to swim, fish or boat there.
The algae feed off natural fertilizers in the manure, which is spread on farms to help grow crops.
On July 30, Gov. Ted Strickland and other state officials unveiled an "action plan" to clean the lake, one of 20 statewide to be choked with toxic algae this past summer. The plan calls for tougher manure limits on farm fields near Grand Lake and for experimental water treatments to remove the algae.
One part of the plan says the state needs to remove "obstacles when an Ohio farmer makes arrangements for exporting manure to nearby areas in Indiana."
"I just think we have enough manure over here," said Barbara Sha Cox, co-founder of an environmental-advocacy group in Indiana. "Figure out a way to clean up your own mess."
Mike Shelton, an Ohio Department of Natural Resources spokesman, said the state isn’t going to start dumping manure across the state line. He said the agency asked for, and got, more flexibility in a federal program that pays farmers to transport and spread manure on fields far from streams that supply Grand Lake with water.
"We’re not trying to shove (manure) where it’s not wanted," Shelton said.