TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The Gulf Specimen Marine Lab was awarded a grant from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
According to the FDEP, the grant is worth $736,531.64 and will be targeted towards preventing harmful algal blooms (HAB) and improving water quality in the state.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection notes the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab, which is located in Panacea, will partner with the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering to study the use of natural and local algae to remove nutrients from Dickerson Bay near Panacea.
"We are incredibly appreciative of the support provided by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection through this grant award. With these funds we will install a one-of-a-kind filtration system that uses locally grown red algae to clean the water that flows through our tanks and reducing the amount of water that is drawn from and returned to Dickerson Bay. This project will result in a new way of growing red algae as a byproduct and further our commitment to the protection of nearshore water quality," Cypress Rudloe, Executive Director of Gulf Specimen Marine Lab said in a statement released last month.
The Department of Environmental Protection notes Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida legislature is proposing an additional $15 million for the 2022-23 fiscal year to fund similar types of projects being undertaken by the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab.
The funding is a $5 million increase from the previous year.
If approved, the FDEP says requests for projects will begin this summer.