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Current Areas of Interest in Ohio

ALGAL BLOOMS & NUTRIENTS

George Bullerjahn and his team from BGSU sampling Lake Erie waterOhio WRC researchers are tracking algal blooms, analyzing potential sources, and creating techniques to reduce nutrients in water bodies. Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) are becoming increasingly prevalent in Ohio. In 2013, 47 of Ohio’s 63 beaches exceeded the national Beach Action Value safety threshold in 20% or more of their samples, triggering beach advisories and/or closures.  Toledo’s microcystin bloom in August 2014, while only rated a 6 on a 10 point scale, compromised water supplies, shutting down schools and businesses.  It is now believed that moderate blooms can create substantial impacts, resulting in a need for runoff control and additional research.

WATER QUALITY AND SUSTAINABLE WATER USE

Ohio WRC researchers work to ensure that drinking water supplies and wastewater technologies are safe, sustainable, reliable, and cost-effective. Plentiful drinking water and clean surface water are fundamental needs for all Ohio residents, but they come at a cost. Water Student of Anne Jefferson from KSU conducting research on stream restorationtreatment membranes clog with biofilms, requiring cleaning and eventual replacement. Water quality and ecosystem responses to restoration projects are not always well documented.

WATER & ENERGY

Ohio WRC researchers identify impacts of hydraulic fracturing and shale energy on water supply, quality, and ecosystem health. Energy production depends upon a continuous supply of water. Simultaneously, water treatment and distribution require significant energy inputs. Power generation is the single largest water use category in the state of Ohio. In 2013, 76 percent of reported water withdrawals came from 40 power facilities.

Ohio Water Resources Center Sponsored Research Projects for the FY 2015 and FY2016 are:

PI and University Project Title Project Number

Costello,

David

KSU
Trace Metal Limitation of Biofilm Growth and Metabolism: Potential Consequences for Storage of Nutrients in Headwater Streams 2016OH490B
Chaffin, Justin
OSU
Effectiveness of Data Buoys as Early Warning System for cHABs (cyanobacterial Harmfull Algal Blooms) in Lake Erie 2016OH484B
Chae, Soryong
UC
Prevention of Harmfull Algal Blooms through Nutrient Zero Wastewater Treatment Using a Vertical Membrane Bioreactor with Food Waste  
Bielicki, Jeff OSU Co-Optimizing Enhanced Water Recovery and CO2 Sequestration in Ohio 2016OH508B
Buchberger, Steve, UC Improved Estimates of Peak Water Demand in Buildings: Implications for Water-Energy Savings  
Bohrer, Gil OSU Baseline Measurements of Methane Emissions from Piedmont Lake – Current and Future Fracking Area 2016OH507B
Dwyer, Darryl UT
 
Determining Components for a Phosphorus Interceptor to Reduce Harmful Algal Blooms in the Western Lake Erie Basin  
Bohrerova, Zuzana OSU Management Of Algal Growth In Ohio's Medium-Sized Lakes

Information Transfer

The projects start in spring/summer 2016 with expected completion in spring/summer 2017 and progress or final report around June 2017.

Ongoing projects from last year are:

  • Dominic Boccelli, UC, "Spatial Demand Estimation: Moving Towards Real-Time Distribution System Network Modeling", 2015OH447B
  • Chin-Min Cheng, OSU, "Separation of Phosphorus- and Nitrogen-nutrients from Agricultural Degraded Waters Using Pervious Filter Material Developed from Industrial By-products", 2013OH436O
  • Zuzana Bohrerova, OSU, "Adopt Your Waterway", Information Transfer Project, 2015OH482O