UToledo’s Water Task Force meets Sept. 30


TOLEDO — In the middle of Lake Erie’s harmful algal bloom season, the University of Toledo Water Task Force will update local, state and federal officials on its water quality and human health research at a special meeting from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday in Nitschke Hall Room 1027.

The task force, which was formed in response to the city of Toledo’s “Do Not Drink” water advisory in 2014, is made up of more than 30 faculty members from across the University working to protect water quality and the health of Lake Erie.

“Clean water is a critical resource and in need of our dedicated focus as we learn how climate change impacts harmful algal bloom formation and toxicity,” said Dr. Frank Calzonetti, vice president for research. “UToledo scientists, engineers, medical researchers, public health professors and legal experts collaborate closely to advance ways to improve water quality and inform stakeholders in our region about our latest research findings.”

Faculty from the Lake Erie Center have been monitoring algae in Lake Erie for nearly 20 years, and researchers are investigating every aspect of harmful algal blooms, from nutrient loading into waterways, conditions in the lake that support algal blooms, ways to treat water at municipal treatment plants, the health impacts from both recreational and ingestion exposure, and policies and laws to protect the lakes.

Water task force research is supported by federal agencies and Ohio’s Harmful Algal Bloom Research Initiative. Projects involve collaboration with national laboratories and other universities, using the world’s fastest supercomputers and most sophisticated scientific instrumentation.