Even as 21 Alberta lakes get warning about blue-green algae, Pigeon Lake is enjoying crystal clear water.
This is the result of pro-active efforts by the Pigeon Lake Renewal League, and other residents, to clean up after a few dismal years.
The Renewal League’s Ron LaJeunesse says citizens around the lake were getting concerned with the state of the water.
“Beaches were covered with algae mats, provincial parks were desolate,” LaJenuesse says. “Ma-Me-O Beach, once a favoured destination for Edmontonians was being avoided, businesses were having difficulty, properties weren’t selling, Pigeon Lake, frankly, had a black eye.”
Residents banded together to clean up the algae mats and sludge on the shore, with one south-shore community alone hauling away 120 cubic yards of sludge. The watershed association is also working to educate people on how to redirect runoff to avoid polluting the lake.
LaJeunesse says they’ve already seen an uptick in the number of visitors to the lake, this summer, and they’re hopeful for more.
“We’re seeing more people on the beaches, we’re seeing more people in the stores, the roads are busier” he says. “The provincial parks have been updated over the past couple of years, we’re staring to see people come out there, but I think that’s only going to happen when the word gets out that this is a clean, and enjoyable, lake.” (scb)