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Talk – Navigating Water Quality: Understanding the Impact and Perceptions of Boat-Generated Waves on an Alum Treated Lake in Maine

November 13, 2023 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

| Free

Sport boat with wakeThe talk will be held virtually via Zoom and in-person at 107 Norman Smith Hall, UMaine.

  • Virtual attendance: Complete the registration form to receive Zoom connection information

Speakers: Alison Bates and Alejandra Ortiz, Colby College

The use of alum treatments to bind phosphorus to control algal blooms has been expanding to larger lakes, where there is no historical precedent for success. These larger lakes can have larger wind-created waves that are more energetic, potentially moving more sediment in the lake. A research team led by Ortiz and Bates is studying East Pond to understand whether boat created waves or wind created waves are decreasing the efficacy of the alum treatment on the lake bed.

Using a combination of field observations and numerical modeling, the team is assessing how boat waves influence water quality and sediment movement. Additionally, they are exploring the perceptions and attitudes of local stakeholders towards these wave impacts and boating management practices. By shedding light on the ecological and community dimensions of boat-generated waves, the team seeks to contribute valuable insights to lake management and sustainability efforts in the region.

Dr. Alison Bates is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Colby College. Dr. Bates researches social acceptance of infrastructure and interventions in natural spaces, and implements an equity and justice framework to inform decision-making. Dr. Bates has worked extensively on the renewable energy transition as well as coupled human-environmental systems. She has worked on national energy policy with U.S. Senator Coons to develop markets and policies for renewable energy infrastructure along the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf and served in an advisory role with energy markets planning in Maine with state agencies, NGOs, and industry. She earned her Ph.D. in Marine Policy at the University of Delaware Center and has many years of experience in the non-profit sector for environmental education and public land conservation.

Dr. Alejandra Ortiz is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Colby College. Dr. Ortiz researches the ecogeomorphic evolution of coastal and fluvial landscapes. She studies how different coastlines evolve over 100-1,000s of years using numerical modeling, remote sensing, lab-based physical models, and site-specific field validation. In particular, she is interested in understanding the impacts of climate change and the feedbacks inherent in these systems between plants, humans, and landscapes. She earned her Ph.D. in Marine Geology at the MIT-Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute Joint Program with an M.S. in Environmental Engineering from MIT.


November 13, 2023
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Event Category: