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Check back here often for the latest news about the George Barley Water Prize.

The Scott’s Miracle-Gro Foundation applauds the State of Florida’s support of The Everglades Foundation George Barley Water Prize

Florida Department of Environmental Protection and St. John’s River Water Management District announced a $1 million commitment to The George Barley Water Prize, the world’s largest clean water prize, which is presented by The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation and sponsored by the Everglades Foundation. Read More.

Figure out how to cheaply fix algae blooms and win $10 million

As much as 90 percent of Lake Okeechobee — one of the largest lakes in the U.S. — is covered with algae. The Everglades Foundation in South Florida where the lake is located decided to create a contest with a prize of $10 million for whomever develops a technology that cheaply removes phosphorus, the main culprit in algae blooms, from freshwater bodies. Read More

Wellington company works to prevent algae

Koos Baas is with Green Water Solution in Wellington. His company is a finalist for a $10 million prize in The Everglades Foundation George Barley Water Competition. It’s an effort to find solutions for phosphorous-polluted bodies of water around the globe including Lake Okeechobee. Read More

Solution to water pollution? Innovation

Inspired by trouble in the warm waters of the Florida Keys, an international science competition with a $10 million prize soon turns its focus back to South Florida. The George Barley Water Prize is named for the Florida native, a successful businessman with an Islamorada home who actively campaigned to halt degradation of fresh water suffering from nutrient pollution. Read More

International competition with $10m prize hopes to solve water runoff problem

Nine international teams are trying to find a solution to harmful algae blooms caused by agricultural runoff in a competition with big environmental implications. Read More

$10M water prize kicks off pilot stage of global contest in Holland Marsh

Ten teams plus a $10M prize will hopefully equal one global solution. That sentiment is floating an international competition sponsored by the Everglades Foundation of Florida, which kicked off its pilot stage of the George Barley Water Prize in the Holland Marsh Feb. 21. Read More

Solution to global threat being floated in Lake Simcoe watershed

The 10 top contenders for a $10 million global water contest will begin testing their technologies under cold weather conditions in the Holland Marsh thanks to the co-operation of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC), the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury, Township of King and Holland Marsh drainage system joint municipal services board. Read More

How ScottsMiracle-Gro found value in vulnerability

Technology has created a two-way conversation between consumers and corporations, and brands now shoulder the responsibility of leaving a positive impact on the world. Read More

Top 10 named in $10M George Barley Water Prize

The top 10 contenders in the George Barley Water Prize, a $10 million worldwide competition to find a solution to the algae crisis, were named today during a ceremony at Chicago’s Field Museum. Read More

Algal Bloom Outbreaks

Here is a brief recap of a few of the algal bloom hotspots in August, 2017.

Advisory Board Members in the News

Learn more about what our distinguished Advisory Board Members are doing and saying.


Lake Simcoe Watershed to Provide Laboratory to Find a Solution to Algae Crisis

MIAMI, FLA. (February 21, 2018)– With the active support of the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, Ontario’s Lake Simcoe Watershed will soon be transformed into a working laboratory for 10 remaining teams of scientists who are racing to find a solution to the world’s algae problem, announced Eric Eikenberg, CEO of the Everglades Foundation.

“We are thrilled that the next phase of the competition for The George Barley Water Prize is taking place in the Holland Marsh area,” said Chris Ballard, Minister of Environment and Climate Change. “Excess phosphorus is a world-wide problem and we are excited these innovative solutions are being tested right here in the Lake Simcoe watershed.”

Eikenberg explained that for two years, 104 teams of scientists from 13 different countries have been competing to find a safe, cost-effective way to remove excess phosphorus from freshwater supplies. Phosphorus, an essential nutrient, can build up in water supplies and is a principal cause of the blue-green algae that is devastating drinking water supplies across the globe.

At stake is the $10 million (U.S.) George Barley Water Prize, named for the late conservation advocate and Everglades Foundation co-founder. Designed to encourage scientific discoveries that lead to a solution, the Barley Prize is modeled after the innovation and entrepreneurship awards such as those that motivated Charles Lindberg’s nonstop solo flight from New York to Paris.

“We have tried litigation, legislation, regulation and education, so now we are putting our faith in innovation, hoping to inspire the world’s brightest scientific minds to find a solution” explained Eikenberg.

“The solution must work in temperate climates,” explained Dr. Melodie Naja, Chief Scientist at The Everglades Foundation. “And the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change showed us that the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury and the Township of King fit the bill perfectly.”

Over the course of the next three months, the 10 teams of scientists, including two from Canada, will test their approaches on Ontario’s Holland Marsh in an attempt to prove their ability to extract phosphorus safely and affordably even in temperate climates.

“Each of these teams is advancing the science and economics of phosphorus removal,” said Dr. Naja. “For the winning team, the $10 million Barley Prize will be just a small down payment on the profits to come. That’s how serious the problem is.”

The Barley Prize is presented by the Scott’s Miracle-Gro Foundation and supported by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) The Knight Foundation and Xylem. The Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change is a funding supporter of the Pilot Phase.

A ribbon cutting will take place on Wednesday, February 21st at 11:00am at the Art Janse Pumping Station. Press is welcome to the kickoff.

For more information, visit or follow the Prize on social media: or