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Bennett Endowed Lecture: Synergistic Interactions between Eutrophication and Climate Change: Implications for Water Quality in Lakes

Tuesday, July 29, 2014
12:00 AM
Gates Lecture Hall, University of Michigan Biological Station, 9133 Biological Rd., Pellston, MI 49769

As a result of climate change, eutrophication, unsustainable withdrawal, and the introduction of invasive species, humans are altering ecosystem functioning in freshwater lakes around the globe at an unprecedented rate.  While many studies have examined the effects of these stressors on water quality in isolation, less is known about how they will interact.  

By integrating a diverse dataset of long-term monitoring records, lake surveys, and mesocosm experiments, Dr. Cayelan Carey will highlight how anthropogenic stressors can interact in context-dependent – and sometimes surprising – ways to alter plankton food webs and nutrient cycling.  

For example, she has found that increasing water temperatures and eutrophication can synergistically interact to promote the growth of toxic cyanobacterial blooms, but that the synergism is dependent on lake trophic state.  Moreover, under some scenarios, increased nutrients and temperatures may counteract, thereby nullifying their effects.  

Carey will discuss how her research demonstrates that lake responses to multiple human drivers are nuanced and complex, and will have substantial implications not only for aquatic community and ecosystem dynamics, but also for the future management of our water resources.

Cayelan Carey is an Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. She received her Ph.D. from Cornell University in 2012 and was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Wisconsin's Center for Limnology in 2012-2013.

This event is free and open to the public.