Buoys and underwater probes can measure water quality, like this one outside of Cleveland, Ohio.
(Ed Verhamme, LimnoTech)
A networked array of sensors could warn drinking water utilities in real time of harmful algal blooms and prevent public health crises.
Many people living near the Great Lakes have forgotten what a sea lamprey is.
When sea lampreys gained a foothold in the Great Lakes in the 1950s, these trout-sucking predators upended the ecosystem.
Harmful algal bloom in Lake Erie, Sept. 4, 2009.
Warmer waters, heavier storms and nutrient pollution are a triple threat to Great Lakes cities' drinking water. The solution: Cutting nutrient releases and installing systems to filter runoff.
Air conditioning cools city residents during heat waves, but also strains the power grid and fuels climate change.
Climate change is making extreme weather events, both hot and cold, more frequent across the Great Lakes region. Weatherizing low-income residents' homes is an important way to prepare.
A mylar balloon at Presqu'ile Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada.
Releasing balloons at weddings and other celebrations is festive, until they break into pieces and become plastic pollution. A citizen science project is spotlighting the problem.
A harmful algal bloom in the western basin of Lake Erie in August 2017.
(NOAA/Aerial Associates Photography, Inc. by Zachary Haslick/flickr)
The Great Lakes contain reservoirs of legacy contaminants, mostly in their sediments, that are vulnerable to resuspension.
A house in western New York during the ‘Snowvember’ snowstorm of 2014.
As climate change intensifies, much of the nation's building stock will need upgrading to strengthen it against flooding, snowstorms and other weather hazards.
Heavy rainfall and winds caused flooding in southeastern Michigan along western Lake Erie in May 2019.
Tom Hawley/The Monroe News via AP
All the Great Lakes are at, or close to, record highs. But it is us, not the water, that needs to move out of the way.
Waves on Lake Superior crash against the Duluth, Minn. waterfront Sept. 10, 2014.
Over the past 20 years, Great Lakes water levels have gone from sustained multiyear lows to multiyear highs. Climate change is accelerating the transition between dry phases and wet phases.
Historic flooding in the Midwest, including this farm in Nebraska, has caused widespread damage.
DroneBase via AP
A climatologist who studies precipitation trends explains how climate change is projected to make flooding events in the Midwest more severe and more frequent.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame. Rwanda has a booming economy that is controlled by an authoritarian regime
Rwanda is a paradox -- a 'development miracle' and an authoritarian state.
There are 130 billion gallons of water in Wisconsin’s Lake Mendota, and now, trillions of spiny water fleas.
It's cheaper to prevent biological invasions than to react after they happen. But it's hard to detect invaders while there are still just a few of them. Knowing when and where to look can help.
There’s a bridge over this Michigan waterway and a precarious pipeline beneath it.
AP Photo/Al Goldis
A big spill in Michigan's Straits of Mackinac could have devastating consequences. But does replacing the pipeline running beneath it make sense in a warming world?
Releasing a female wolf on Isle Royale, Oct. 2, 2018.
The National Park Service is moving wolves to Isle Royale in Lake Superior to replenish a small pack on the island. Wolves prey on moose, which are overgrazing the island. It doesn't hurt that they are charismatic.
Debris pulled from a Lake Erie marina during a cleanup, June 9, 2012.
NOAA Office of Response and Restoration
Roughly 10,000 tons of plastic enter the Great Lakes every year, and scientists want to know where it ends up. There are some parallels to ocean plastics, but also important differences.
Researchers are finding plastics in fish in freshwater ecosystems.
Ocean plastic has gained notoriety, but we're starting to realize that microplastics pollute our freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems too.
A policewoman carries a Burundi flag during a protest against President Nkurunziza’s decision to run for a third term.
The competition between the two authoritarian regimes has become a fact that, given the regional context, is here to last. It justifies repression and indefinitely postpones democratic expression.
Algae overload: Lake Erie algal bloom 2011.
The same conditions – ultimately tied to nutrient runoff – that created the damaging toxic blooms and dead zones in US waterways of recent years are forecast to return this year.