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Senator George J. Mitchell Center & Maine's Sustainability Solutions Initiative

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Accelerated Recovery of Maine Lakes

A Senator George J. Mitchell Center researcher was part of a team that discovered lakes in the Northeast U.S. are recovering from the effects of acid rain more rapidly now than they did in the 1980s and 1990s.
Sarah Nelson, assistant research professor with the Mitchell Center and cooperating assistant research professor in Watershed Biogeochemistry in the UMaine School of Forest Resources, along with colleagues made the discovery in New England and Adirondack Mountain lakes.

She said the accelerated recovery is promising after a long legacy of contamination.

“It took about 150 years for the legacy of pollution to build up in these lakes, so it makes sense that it will take some time for the lakes to recover,” Nelson said. ” It takes time for environmental change to happen. We need long-term monitoring, like decades-long research to track progress.” See more…

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Contact Information

Senator George J. Mitchell Center & Maine's Sustainability Solutions Initiative
5710 Norman Smith Hall
Orono, ME 04469
Phone: 207.581.3244E-mail:
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
A Member of the University of Maine System