lab report 6 - Emily Kamp 12-2-10 Brandon Ford, Emily...

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Emily Kamp 12-2-10 Brandon Ford, Emily Hildebrand, Michael Castellani Section 002 How Human Activity in Watersheds Affects the Quality of Lakes and Rivers INTRODUCTION: First I’d like to touch on what exactly a watershed is because this was something I was unclear about until this class. A watershed can be defined as “an area of surrounding land above a water body that catches all the water that drains into the water body.” (Lab 6 Part 1 PowerPoint- slide 3). Understanding watersheds is a very important because they are a large determining factor of the water chemistry of lakes and rivers. For this particular lab we studied how human activity in watersheds affects the quality of lakes and rivers. In order to study this we had to analyze relationships between land use, which is the activities humans perform on a parcel of land, and water quality in lakes. The 6 specific lakes we examined include: Christiana, Devils, Indian Lake, Margrethe, Moon, and Lansing. As I previously stated the question this lab addressed was “how does human activity in watersheds affect the quality of lakes and rivers?” In order to find an answer to this there were two things that needed to be done. First we needed to quantify human activity in lake watersheds and second, quantify water quality in lakes within those watersheds. Our hypothesis was that human activity in watersheds does in fact have an impact on the quality of lakes and rivers. We predicted that each of the five land uses all have a negative effect on water quality. To elaborate urbanization means more buildings and concrete/cement which increases runoff and carry nonpoint source pollutants. Also failed septic systems or combined overflows discharge raw sewage (Lab 6 Part 1 PowerPoint-slide 9). Agriculture is another thing that increases pollutants due to fertilizers, animal wastes, erosion, and pesticides (slide 10). Last, logging and wetland development increases runoff and erosion as well as altering the nutrient
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This note was uploaded on 03/28/2011 for the course ISP LAB 217L taught by Professor Deskaj during the Fall '10 term at Michigan State University.

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lab report 6 - Emily Kamp 12-2-10 Brandon Ford, Emily...

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