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A Great Lakes Primer
Great Lakes Basin
Great Lakes Profile
Morphometry and Development
Lake
Depth (m)
Surface
Area (km2)
Volume
(km3)
Retention
Time (yr)
Population
(millions)
Basin Area
Lake Area
Ratio
Superior
147
82,100
12,100
191
0.6
1.56
Michigan
85
57,800
4,920
99
10.1
2.04
Huron
59
59,600
3,540
22
2.7
2.25
Erie
19
25,700
484
2.6
11.7
3.04
Ontario
86
18,960
1,640
6
8.2
3.38
Phosphorus and Eutrophication
Trophic State Index
TSI  f ( P, Chl , PP, SD)
Trophic State Index
TSI  f ( P, Chl , PP, SD)
Trophic State Index
TSI  f ( P, Chl , PP, SD)
Trophic State Index
TSI  f ( P, Chl , PP, SD)
Trophic State Index
TSI  f ( P, Chl , PP, SD)
Trophic State Index
TSI  f ( P, Chl , PP, SD)
Toxic Substances
Invasive Species
183 non-indigenous species in the Great Lakes (NOAA)
Areas of Concern
GLWQA
Areas of Concern (AOCs): severely degraded sites with impaired beneficial use
Remedial Action Plans (RAPs): specify problems and methods of correcting them
Lakewide Management Plans (LaMPs): plan to assess, restore, and protect ecosystem health
Areas of Concern
Waukegan Harbor (IL)
PCBs
Outboard Marine Corporation
Presque Isle Bay (PA)
PAHs, heavy metals
Rouge River (MI)
Urban storm water discharges, CSOs,
nonpoint source pollution, and
municipal and industrial discharges
From the Literature – Lake Superior
Toxaphene was a popular
replacement for DDT until being
banned in 1982. Here, atmospheric
sampling and back-trajectory
analysis are applied to quantify rates
of deposition and sources for Lake
Superior.
From the Literature – Lake Michigan
Beach closing due to fecal contamination are
closely associated with public perception of water
quality
From the Literature – Lake Huron
Numbers on x-axis refer to
depth zones: 1 = shallow,
2 = intermediate, 3 = deep
From the Literature – Lake Erie
Black area is region of anoxia.
Number at bottom is depletion rate.
From the Literature – Lake Ontario
Mirex is an organic chemical used as a fire
retardant and insecticide (fire ants). It has a
long half-life. It was found to be present in
fish in northern Lake Ontario, but no source
was identified.
A Great Lakes Primer