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Lake Study Shows Effects of Acid Rain


Thirty years in the making, but researchers have wrapped up a study of the effects of air and water pollution on Little Rock Lake north of Minocqua.

The 39-acre lake was into two halves with a thick plastic curtain in 1984. Half of the lake was left undisturbed while the other half was slowly doused with acid to measure the effects of sulfur dioxide pollution from coal-fired power plants.

The simulated acid rain destroyed the native fish population and produced an ugly algae bloom on the bottom of the lake as well as a dense mat of filamentous algae on the surface water.

 
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Officials Take Tour of Lake Erie Algae Bloom - Known as microcystis, the free-floating algae once again has transformed much of the basin into the color and texture of pea soup. Mats have formed a scum on the lake, with particles so dense the water seems to have chunks of algae in it.


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