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Rules and Regulations

Sea Lettuce (Ulva lactuca)

Sea Lettuce (Ulva lactuca)Rhode Island is blessed with some of the most beautiful beaches in the Northeast. Facilities are generously spaced along the coastline, and each has attractions of its own. Some areas, though, are also vulnerable to sea lettuce.

Sea lettuce, or Ulva lactuca, is green algae that lives near and below the low tide mark. When it becomes stranded on the shore, it can form large mats. As these mats decay they can produce a foul, rotten egg odor. Once the sea lettuce begins to decompose, it becomes gelatinous and is nearly impossible to remove. There is little that can be done to eliminate the foul odors.


The best way to protect against odors from sea lettuce is to Get it While it's Green! When the tides deposit sea lettuce along the waterfront border of your property, grab some gloves and a rake, gather it up and dispose of it in yard waste bags. For further information please contact the department.

BART Contact Information
In an emergency (an immediate threat to public safety or the environment) contact DEM Division of Law Enforcement:
(401) 222-3070 (24/7)

To report a release of a hazardous substance (such as an oil spill) contact DEM Office of Emergency Response:
(401) 222-1360 (Mon. - Fri. 8:30 am-4:00 pm)

To report an environmental incident on the Bay, such as a fish kill or algal bloom call the Bay Line:
(401) 222-8888

For DEM Public Affairs Office:
(401) 222-2771 or view the DEM Pressroom

Bay Line and BART are administered by DEM Office of the Director
235 Promenade Street
Providence, RI 02908-5767
Phone: (401) 222-2771