Byline: VICTOR HULL firstname.lastname@example.org
Federal officials Tuesday refused the state's request to continue dumping treated phosphate waste water in the Gulf of Mexico under an emergency permit after Nov. 30.
As a result, the state plans to resume discharging about 2 million gallons of the industrial waste daily into Bishop Harbor, a small, shallow area off Tampa Bay, next week.
The water, high in nitrogen, could spur the growth of algae in the harbor. Excess algae, in turn, could kill sea grass, used as food and shelter by sea creatures.
However, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said it couldn't extend the Gulf dumping because the situation at the defunct Manatee County phosphate processing plant, called Piney Point, no longer qualifies as an emergency under federal regulations. …