Measuring in at 6,474 miles, the annual Gulf of Mexico “dead zone” covers an area roughly the size of Connecticut and Rhode Island combined.
This region in the water is defined by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as an area of low to no oxygen that can kill fish and marine life, thus affecting commercial and recreational fishing.
These areas are also referred to as hypoxia areas and occur when there is nutrient runoff, largely due to the fertilizer used in fields near the water. This accelerates algae growth, which compromises the oxygen levels in the water when they decompose.
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