News for Media

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Gulf of Mexico dead zone not expected to shrink anytime soon

Achieving water quality goals for the Gulf of Mexico may take decades, according to findings by Global Water Futures researchers at the University of Waterloo.

The results, published today in Science, suggest that policy goals for reducing the size of the northern Gulf of Mexico’s dead zone may be unrealistic, and that major changes in agricultural and river management practices may be necessary to achieve the desired improvements in water quality.

Friday, September 15, 2017

An important process fueling harmful algal blooms investigated in Canadian water bodies

algae in Canadian waters

For many Canadians, summer time means time at the lake, swimming, fishing, boating, and relaxing. Nothing can spoil this experience like blue-green mats of muck, caused by algal blooms. These blooms negatively affect not only recreational activities – but also put drinking water source, property values, wildlife, and human health at risk. In the 1970s, scientists discovered that the nutrient phosphorus caused algal blooms, which led to new regulations and improved sewage treatment. Nevertheless, blooms continue to plague many Canadian lakes.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Blair Feltmate named chair of Government of Canada expert panel on adapting to climate change

Blaire Feltmate

Taking action to adapt to climate change will help protect the health, well-being, and prosperity of Canadians and manage risks to communities, businesses, and ecosystems. Preparing for the effects of climate change before they happen will make our communities stronger and healthier for this generation and the next. That’s why the Government of Canada is making significant investments to help communities build their resilience to climate change as a key part of our plan to address climate change.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Millions of lakes right in our backyard serve as windows into Earth’s origins

Boreal Lake

Countless lakes in Canada and elsewhere may offer some important insights into how life on Earth began and may also help us grapple with the pressing environmental issues facing the planet today.

The Boreal Shield is the largest of Canada’s 15 terrestrial ecozones, where boreal forests overlap the Canadian Shield. It stretches almost 4,000 kilometres from Newfoundland to Alberta. The millions of lakes that stud the Boreal Shield may offer clues into how ancient microorganisms might have shaped atmospheric and geological conditions on Earth.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Destruction of wetlands linked to algal blooms in Great Lakes

Wetlands

Canada's current wetland protection efforts have overlooked how the environment naturally protects fresh-water resources from agricultural fertilizer contaminants, researchers from the University of Waterloo's Water Institute have found.

In a recent study, researchers at Waterloo’s Faculty of Science and Faculty of Engineering found that small wetlands have a more significant role to play than larger ones in preventing excess nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus from fertilizer from reaching waterbodies such as the Great Lakes.