Press Releases

WCNY Explores Toxic Algae Outbreaks Across the Finger Lakes Region in New Documentary

WCNY, Central New York’s public communications organization, will premiere its locally produced documentary “BLOOM: The Toxic Threat to the Finger Lakes” on Thursday, May 11 at 8 p.m. on WCNY-TV.

“BLOOM” explores the recent outbreaks of cyanobacteria, also known as toxic algae or harmful algal bloom, across the eleven Finger Lakes. These blooms threaten drinking water, as well as a multi-billion-dollar tourism economy across Central New York. While research into this growing problem continues, “BLOOM” goes beneath the waves to bring to the surface potential environmental culprits that are bringing disruption to those who call the Finger Lakes home.

“In this film, WCNY Senior Producer Kevin Miller provides a primer on toxic algae. He digs into the causes of this terrifying scourge from Conesus Lake to Keuka Lake, Canandaigua to Otisco, and reports on what is occurring and what can be done to confront the spread,” said Mitch Gelman, president and CEO of WCNY. “It also looks at conservation efforts that the State of New York and the Finger Lakes Land Trust are contributing to protect the lakes, while also exploring the studies aimed to help the lakes become more resilient.”

“Whether coming from the state, local entities, or residents of our beloved Finger Lakes, the heart of ‘BLOOM’ keeps coming back to the notion that no matter how difficult, it is human nature to continue to seek solutions to this mounting dilemma,” Miller said when reflecting on the many months he spent researching, writing, filming, and editing this special report.

Gelman says, “The film reinforces WCNY’s commitment to telling the stories that matter to our region. This special report provides educational coverage of a topic that is important to the economic vitality and quality of life in Central New York.”

“BLOOM: The Toxic Threat to the Finger Lakes” is a film made in collaboration with the Finger Lakes Land Trust.

The documentary will premiere on Thursday, May 11 at 8 p.m. on WCNY-TV. It will also re-air on May 14 & 28 at 6 p.m. on WORLD, and June 1 at 10:30 p.m. and June 13 at 9:30 p.m. on WCNY-TV.

For more information, please visit For viewing information, visit

About WCNY

WCNY was founded in 1965 as The Educational Television Council of Central New York. Today, it is a public communications organization that produces content across multiple platforms, including television and radio programs, dynamic web and targeted email content, the WCNY CONNECT magazine, and social media. Through its media platforms, in-person and virtual events, WCNY brings local coverage and educational services to Central New Yorkers. WCNY operates four digital, pledge-free broadcast channels and three radio stations. Classic FM is one of a few radio stations in the world dedicated to locally programmed classical music.


◄ Back to News