Year Established: 2013 Start Date: 2013-03-01 End Date: 2013-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $15,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $30,473
Principal Investigators: Amelia Ward
Abstract: Water quality impairment in rivers and streams due to excessive loads of phosphorous and nitrogen is considered a major problem in waters of the U.S. Elevated concentrations of nutrients cause excessive growth of algae and aquatic plants which can generate large diurnal variations in the amount of dissolved oxygen and pH in the water column. The lack of oxygen in the water column can be harmful to fish and other aquatic organisms and also affect their behavior and growth due to changes in respiration (Lee et al., 2012). According to the Water Quality Assessment and Total Maximum Load Information website of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), approximately 101,269 miles of rivers and streams throughout the U.S. are impaired by nutrients. The leading causes of these impairments are primarily nutrient enrichment and elevated total phosphorous. In Alabama, the 2010 Alabama Water Quality Assessment Report indicates that approximately 784 of the 10,900 assessed stream and river miles along the State are impaired by nutrients.