'Pretty' Pollution Photos Show Depths of Minnesota Lake's Environmental Distress

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mary taffe lake pollution hades photo
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Lifelong Minnesota resident Mary Taffe turned to art to document the algae blooms (pictured left) and other pollution that has been increasingly prominent in nearby Big Stone Lake over the past four years -- changes she believes are caused by increased factory farming activity in the area.

"The first changes began four years ago, when we saw the algae bloom so early and thick, we couldn't use the lake. This was around the time a factory dairy in the watershed ramped up to approximately 13,000 cows," Taffe says.

"We haven't used the lake for four full summers, but last summer, the smell became nearly intolerable and lasted for two and a half months because the prevailing winds blew the goop to our side of the lake. It sat there and cooked."

Mary Taffe, "Space Photo - Not"