The Chatham-Kent Public Health Unit has closed all but one of the regions public beaches in the area because of blue-green algae.

Recent tests completed by the Ministry of Environment in areas adjacent to Chatham-Kent have confirmed the presence of cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae.

The unit opened Mitchell’s Bay beach. It said further information and observation suggests that a cyanobacterial bloom did not likely affect the bay.

We are continuing to monitor the cyanobacterial bloom at all Lake Erie beaches. At this time the remainder of Lake Erie beaches remain closed.

Cyanobacteria can produce toxins that are harmful to the health of people and animals.

The health unit said in a media release there is "intense green water along the shores of Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair."

The algae gives the water a foul odour and a green, pea-soup like appearance. Those in contact with the toxins could  experience irritation to the skin.

If swallowed, a person could experience headaches, fever, diarrhea, abdominal pain, vomiting and serious neurological effects.

The health unit says the local treatment plant regularly tests drinking water for the toxin.