This paper addresses two of the common forms of pollution in Lake Erie: excess nutrients leading to blooms of toxin-producing cyanobacteria and pollution from heavy metals. The paper provides a brief history on the state of pollution in the lake, as well as historical methods to solve these problems. It addresses the causes of both harmful algal blooms (HABs) and heavy metal pollution in the lake, which are both related to the structure of modern agricultural, urban, and industrial environments. The major focus of this paper is on practices that are currently being used to address this pollution and how they can be improved. This incorporates explanations of several solutions including low impact development (LID), improving monitoring and detection technology, altering agricultural practices, and improving communication between scientists and farmers. This project will also incorporate my previous research addressing the effectiveness of technology in monitoring HABs, as well as a map of the watershed that gives a visual representation of pollution sources. Overall, this project hopes to give a clear understanding of pollution sources as well as offer some comprehensive, interdisciplinary solutions.
First Advisor Department
Environment and Sustainability
Second Advisor Department
Potts, Morgan, "Building Better Water in Lake Erie" (2016). Honors Projects. 779.