Water Quality Restoration

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Case Study: Restoring Water Quality In A 600-Acre Lake with Alum

Imagine, it’s a warm summer day and you’re loading up the boat for a fun day on the lake, but when you head into the open water, all you can see is green scum as far as the eye can see. This is exactly what a community in Minnesota experienced when their large lake succumbed to an algal bloom that hindered recreational activities for many families…

Applying Alum to Enhance Your Water

After conducting a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) study, it was determined that the 600-acre lake was impaired by an excess level of phosphorus. After researching management strategies, the watershed district determined Alum was the most effective solution and partnered with our water quality management experts to develop an action plan.

Alum or Aluminum sulfate is a natural element that binds with nutrients in highly turbid waterbodies. Phosphorus and nitrogen are the two main nutrients that can cause water quality issues like algal blooms or aquatic weed growth. These nutrients can enter the water from stormwater runoff, industrial wastewater, animal waste, grass clippings, and fertilizer. The excess nutrients, combined with warm temperatures, created the ideal environment for algae to develop.

How Alum Works In the Water

When introduced to the water using a specialized barge and GPS application technology, alum forms a floc that binds with excess nutrients and suspended particles within the water column. As the floc settles, it forms a cover over the lake bottom and deactivates phosphorus throughout the water column and sediment, thus improving water quality. When water quality is more balanced, lakes are less likely to experience water quality issues.

Achieving Beautiful, Clean Water

Before the application, a water quality study determined that 220 μg/L [micrograms per liter] phosphorus was present in the lake. The first dose of alum was applied over the course of 11 days in the fall. In total, our alum experts applied 292,000 gallons of liquid alum, which adequately covered the areas of concern. The lake’s water quality was monitored throughout the application to ensure levels remained balanced. Following the alum application, a water quality study was conducted and reported that phosphorus dropped to 59 μg/L, over a 70% reduction.

The alum application helped significantly reduce the phosphorus levels in the water, which, in turn, made water quality more balanced. Not only was water quality enhanced, but alum helped improve the water clarity.

Partner with Aquatic Experts to Achieve Your Goals

Through the implementation of alum applications and water quality monitoring, this popular recreational lake went from an unsafe eyesore to a beautiful, clean resource the community can use for swimming, boating, and fishing.

To learn more about the benefits of alum and other nutrient remediation solutions, reach out to your local lake management professional.

Discover the Benefits of Alum

Contact Us to Restore Your Water

Call us at 888-480-5253 or complete the form below to connect with an aquatic management expert.

SOLitude Lake Management is a nationwide environmental firm committed to providing sustainable solutions that improve water quality, enhance beauty and preserve natural resources.

SOLitude’s team of aquatic scientists specializes in the development and execution of customized lake, stormwater pond, wetland and fisheries management programs. Services include water quality testing and restoration, algae and aquatic weed control, installation and maintenance of fountains and aeration systems, shoreline erosion control, muck and sediment removal and invasive species management. SOLitude partners with homeowners associations, golf courses, private landowners, businesses and municipalities. SOLitude Lake Management is part of Rentokil, a leading business services company, operating across the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

For more information, visit SOLitude Lake Management at solitudelakemanagement.com, and connect on FacebookLinkedIn and Twitter.

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