Local Runoff Leads to River Deadzones

1 decade 3 years 1 month ago Thursday, August 24 2006 Aug 24, 2006 Thursday, August 24, 2006 2:56:40 PM CDT August 24, 2006 in News

At the local level, the effect can be hard to see.  We do not generally apply too much fertilizer to our small yard, especially when compared to the acerage of a large farm.  But there are many lawns.  And each lawn, after each rain, will lose some of its soil and any chemical in the soil to the small streams that surround us.  The contaminated rainwater finds its way into larger streams, then rivers, and eventually into the Mississippi river. 

We have just moved from the local effect of fertilizers and pesticides--a beautiful lawn, to the global effect.  When hundreds of thousands of acres of fertilized lawns and farms converge on the largest watershed in the USA, the watershed will contain the accumulated fertilizer and pesticides. 

You can see how beautiful the Mississippi river looks from far away.  But when we take a closer look we see the real effect of the chemicals on the water and the life that should be found in it. 

The fertilizers and pesticides greatly increase the amount of nitrogen and phosphorous in the water.  Algie thrives on these elements.  But a large bloom of algea will create a spike in the amount of oxygen in the water reaching levels that do not sustain other life.  This creates what is called the "Dead Zone" at the mouth of the Mississippi. 

The effect is not as great in the winter months.  Most people do not fertilize in the fall as heavily and much of the rain water water is stored in snow and the mountains.  When spring comes, homeowners and farmers begin to fertilize again, and by the time summer roles around, the rain has washed the chemicals to the mouth of the Mississippi.  The blooms, represented as red in the images, increases. 

Our actions upstream effect the environment downstream.  One simple option people have to act locally and help the global environment is to let their grass grow longer.  3 and 1/2 to 4 inches is recommended.  Your lawn will be more healthy, if this is all you do.  Also, there are a veriety of organic and less-harmfull alternatives to fertilizers and pesticides.  Corn Gluten Meal is one example. 

Good luck with your lawns, and now you know what you do may affect people living down stream. 

 

More News

Grid
List
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Authorities are investigating a triple homicide in a Kansas City neighborhood. Police spokesman... More >>
26 minutes ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 11:01:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - A man was arrested Thursday evening after police found dangerous drugs during a routine traffic stop. The arrest... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 4:29:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The fifth annual Project Homeless Connect begins Friday. The event provides support for those experiencing homelessness,... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 3:23:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Sixteen Columbians will travel to Columbia's Japanese sister city, Hakusan City, to reaffirm the relationship between the two... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 2:29:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — After a controversial sermon at The Crossing on Sunday, the LGBTQ community is calling for those involved to... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 7:41:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Princeton Review named the University of Missouri to three of its "best" lists. MU made the... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 6:16:51 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
Walt Disney once said, "All dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." If your dream... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 5:25:44 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Simmons Bank, the Arkansas-based bank which bought Landmark Bank over the summer, confirmed some positions will be eliminated.... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 5:01:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Former Camden County sheriff's deputy Leonard Jerome Wilson pleaded guilty earlier today to receiving child pornography as... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 4:15:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
BOONVILLE - A grand jury indicted a man on October 11 for one count of child molestation. Robert Bosma,... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 3:33:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
HIGH POINT- In an effort to increase safety at school, High Point school district recently began arming select teachers. ... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 2:21:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri school districts found out Thursday how well they performed over the last school year following the release... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 2:17:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Leaders of a support group say their new "Reentry Opportunity Center" will help give recently released inmates the... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 1:46:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
FULTON - A man has been arrested after drug bust earlier this morning in Fulton. Antonio Jerome Beard, 43,... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 1:36:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri unemployment has decreased a tenth of a percent in the past month according to a new... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 1:10:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — A judge has ordered a man to repay most of a $2 million settlement he received after... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 12:50:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
(CNN) -- Rep. Elijah Cummings, a longtime Maryland Democrat and key figure leading investigations into President Donald Trump, has died... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 10:04:01 AM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Immaculate Conception Catholic Parish's discussion panel will center on the "Faith Response to Climate Change." The... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 7:30:00 AM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 59°
12pm 65°
1pm 68°
2pm 69°
3pm 70°