Water Quality in the Great Lakes: A Guided Tour
Since the 1970s, Great Lakes water quality has improved dramatically thanks to binational cooperative efforts to reduce nutrient inputs and toxic discharges. However, legacy contaminant issues have remained and new threats have emerged. Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) Great Lakes monitoring and surveillance programs provide some of the most comprehensive information about freshwater quality in the world. Alice Dove, environmental scientist with ECCC for over 15 years, will provide a water quality tour of the Great Lakes, highlighting the monitoring programs and projects, and providing an overview of the current status and trends of important water quality issues. While nuisance and toxic algal blooms are plaguing Lake Erie, offshore regions of the other Great Lakes are experiencing unprecedented low phosphorus levels. Our understanding of water quality is improved by targeted monitoring of sediment, fish and water in the offshore, nearshore, Great Lakes interconnecting channels, and in priority watersheds draining into the Great Lakes.