Lower flows and groundwater levels may be increasing pollution levels
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — A recent quadrupling in concentrations of zinc in the Snake River may be partly a result of drier and warmer weather, according to researchers with the University of Colorado.
Ongoing sampling and testing in the Snake shows those concentrations have been steadily increasing during the past 30 years, with far-reaching consequences for microbes, algae, invertebrates and fish.
The research team, led by grad student Caitlin Crouch, speculated the increased zinc concentrations may be tied to changes in groundwater conditions and stream flow patterns caused by climate change and the associated snowmelt that has been peaking two to three weeks earlier than normal in recent years, largely because of warming air temperatures. The result is lowered stream flows and drier soils along the stream in September and October, which increases metal concentrations, said Crouch. (more…)
Filed under: Environment, Summit County Colorado | Tagged: acid mine drainage, Environment, global warming, Pennsylvania Mine Summit County, Peru Creek, Snake River, Summit County Colorado, Summit County News, water pollution | 1 Comment »