Managing Excess Nutrients

Students will focus on the role of excess nutrients as a major type of nonpoint source pollution affecting the Lower Grand River Watershed. Nutrients include fertilizers such as nitrogen and phosphorus that contribute to excess plant and algae growth. Students will be able to:

  1. Identify nutrients as a major pollutant.
  2. Determine how nutrients get into a river or stream system and the potential effects of nutrients in the waterways.
  3. Identify the relative impact of excess nutrients in various parts of the Lower Grand River Watershed.
  4. Explore ways to reduce excess nutrients in our local water bodies.

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Resource Links

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Link 4-A: Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) or CyanoHABs. https://www.epa.gov/nutrient-policy-data/cyanohabs

Link 4B: Lake Erie algal blooms. http://lakeeriealgae.com/

Link 4C: Building the Bloom. https://www.bigelow.org/archive/edhab/building_bloom.html

Link 4D: Marvelous Mud Data Nugget lesson. http://datanuggets.org/2014/06/marvelous-mud/

Link 4E: EPA Nonpoint Source Outreach Toolbox https://cfpub.epa.gov/npstbx/index.html

Link 4F: A Community in Crisis: Habport. https://www.bigelow.org/archive/edhab/community_crisis.html

Link 4G: Cyanobacteria Harmful Algal Blooms: CyanoHABs. https://www.epa.gov/nutrient-policy-data/cyanohabs

Link 4H: Data Nuggets.  http://kbsgk12project.kbs.msu.edu/data-nuggets/

Link 4I: Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) in the Great Lakes. http://www.miseagrant.umich.edu/explore/coastal-communities/harmful-algal-blooms-in-the-great-lakes/

Link 4J: Lower Grand River Organization of Watersheds (LGROW). http://www.lgrow.org/watershedmanagementplan

Link 4K: Michigan Clean Water Corps. https://micorps.net/

Link 4L: Michigan Department of Environmental Quality: Nonpoint Source Pollution. www.michigan.gov/nps

Link 4M: Michigan Natural Shoreline Partnership (MNSP).  http://www.mishorelinepartnership.org/

Link 4N: Michigan Nonpoint Source Best Management Practices Manual. https://www.michigan.gov/documents/deq/deq-wb-nps-Intro_250601_7.pdf

Link 4O Michigan State University Extension. http://msue.anr.msu.edu/resources/smart_soils_what_you_can_do_to_reduce_phosphorus

Link 4P: Nonpoint Source: Education and Outreach. https://www.epa.gov/polluted-runoff-nonpoint-source-pollution/nonpoint-source-education-and-outreach

Link 4Q: Nonpoint Source Kids: Articles and Activities for Middle School Students. https://www.epa.gov/polluted-runoff-nonpoint-source-pollution/nonpoint-source-kids-articles-and-activities-middle-school

Link 4R: Nutrient Framework to Reduce Phosphorus and Nitrogen Pollution. http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,4561,7-135-3313_3677-264525–,00.html

Link 4S: Nutrient Pollution. https://www.epa.gov/nutrientpollution

Link 4T: Rain to Drain – Slow the Flow. http://extension.psu.edu/natural-resources/water/youth/rain-to-drain


The Communities for Clean Water videos and lessons plans were created in partnership with WGVU and the GVSU Annis Water Resources Institute. They were made possible through a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency through the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.