AP reports on $100,000 NSF grant to fund lake quality study

The Associated Press reported the National Science Foundation has awarded a one-year, $100,000 grant for continuing a University of Maine citizen science project geared at protecting the water quality of lakes. The grant will help extend the project, which began in 2015 with funding from UMaine’s Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions, into 2018 and beyond. Maine lakes contribute about $4 billion to the state’s economy through recreational and other uses, but they also are experiencing a decline in water quality, the article states. One of the biggest concerns, according to UMaine researchers, is nutrients stimulating the growth of aquatic plant life, which results in depletion of dissolved oxygen and can harm the health of the ecosystem and lead to higher treatment costs for lakes that are used as a source of drinking water. The project involves developing a “lake vulnerability index,” AP reported. Maine Public, U.S. News & World Report, The Washington Times and WRAL carried the AP article.