Sargassum Seaweed Explained

I get asked a lot about the sargassum seaweed this time each year. The short version of the story is that there is little the city can do about it. It’s a naturally occurring problem in waterways throughout Florida (not just North Miami). The costs to somehow scoop it up are very high and there is no dump site that will take it anyway. Sargassum seaweed washes in from the ocean. Once it gets caught along the beach (or our canal-ways or mangrove roots), it starts to rot and causes the smell, which officially is Hydrogen Sulfide. Mixed with the mud, hot sun, and ebbs and flows of tide, the smell is unpleasant, but not harmful. Some environmentalists I’ve spoken with have told me the seaweed creates a necessary habitat for sea life to reproduce. So I guess that’s a silver lining. Before long, it will all rot and drop to the ocean floor, or it will be carried back out by the tides. In time, it will be back again. Every year. Sargassum season will run until October.