Samantha Oliver: Altered Nutrient Flows into Lakes

UW-Madison Center of Limnology:

Humans have drastically changed the distribution of nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) across the landscape through urbanization, food production and burning fossil fuels. This has come at a cost to water quality; excess nutrients are transported to surface waters where they can fuel toxic algal blooms, foul drinking water and disrupt the ecosystem. We’ve made progress on point source pollution like sewage discharge since the Clean Water Act was established in 1972. But diffuse nutrient sources like runoff from agricultural areas are difficult to manage and still plague surface waters.