Bad Water is Bad for Business

The kids are afraid to go anywhere near it.”

It smells like a septic tank. You can smell it from a half-mile away.”

It has the color of neon blue-green paint.”


The scary, stinking, green ooze described above isn’t the Swamp Thing, or the subject of a cheesy horror movie. Rather, these descriptions, from Wisconsin waterfront business owners, refer to phosphorus-fueled toxic blue-green algae blooms that are occurring with troubling frequency and intensity on Wisconsin waterbodies in recent years.

Read the following stories from local small business owners to find out more about the detrimental effect that poor water quality—blue-green algae in particular—is having on Wisconsin tourism-based economies and waterfront businesses.


Realtor Paul Merk story

Bar/restaurant and marina owner Tom Koren’s story 

Bar/restaurant owner Tom Dorsey’s story 

Realtor Robyn Morin’s story 

Supper club/lounge owner Rick Carlson’s story 

Property owner Ned Gillette’s story 

Business owner Jason Davis’ story 

Resort owner Frank Rybeck’s story