In this article, Tetra Tech’s Jonathan Butcher and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Daniel Nover, Thomas Johnson, and Christopher Clark examine the effects of climate change on lake thermal and mixing dynamics. Twenty-seven lake and reservoir archetypes throughout the U.S. were selected and examined for climate-induced changes, which present a risk to water quality and ecosystem services.

This study projected an increase in both surface water and bottom-level temperatures and the strength of thermal stratification that could present a range of future challenges for lake and cold-water fisheries management. The article projected that significant decreases in the amount of lake ice cover will occur. These results show that climate-induced changes in water balance and mass inputs of nutrients, within the examined bodies of water, may further increase the vulnerability of these lakes to climate change. 

Originally published in Climatic Change.

Jonathan B. Butcher et al.
January 7, 2015
Climatic Change
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