This is kind of backward. States have banned phosphorus fertilizers for lawns, because the phosphorus runs off the landscape, into rivers and streams, and breeds algal blooms and muck. Ever visited a beach visited by muck? It’s not a vacation.
But here comes some new warnings: Climate change can cause more phosphorus to leach from the soil. I can see the conflicts now: People who want thicker lawns vs. people who want to relax in the sweet, sweet sugar sand.
The argument for phosphorus bans has been the need to keep beaches free of dead algae, and the fact that soil in places like Michigan already contains enough natural phosphorus to grow a decent lawn.
But climate change predictions include more heavy rainstorms, with soil being rewetted more frequently. Apparently, this rewetting means an increase in phosphorus that leaches from the soil and into our waterways.
And this is about more than the beach.