EPA gives La grant to help fight dead zone, Vitter says

By The Associated Press
8 August 2012

U.S. Sen. David Vitter says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will award a $100,000 grant to the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority to help fight the Gulf of Mexico‘s "dead zone."

mississippi_river_gulf_of_mexico.JPGThe Mississippi River at the point where it flows into the Gulf of Mexico.

Vitter says the grant will be used to help reduce hypoxia, or low oxygen levels in the Gulf, caused by increased nutrients transported from the Mississippi River.

This year’s "dead zone," which develops every spring and summer, is the fourth-smallest since measurements began in 1985. It measured 2,889 square miles, said a report released last month by the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium. Last year’s zone was about 6,765 square miles. The record is 8,400.

Vitter said Tuesday the grant will be used to develop a strategy to decrease the Gulf’s nutrient levels and thus reduce hypoxia.