Freshwater Science: New Drainage Approaches for Nutrient and Sediment Removal

February 28, 2024

11:00 am – 11:30 am
Location: Virtual

Most agricultural land in the western basin of Lake Erie relies on drainage practices such as tile drainage and channelization to successfully grow crops on fertile yet poorly drained soils. However, water discharge from drainage can hinder surface water quality far beyond farm fields, with nutrient runoff fueling harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie. Recent research has demonstrated that agricultural drainage ditches can play an important and necessary role in mitigating downstream water quality impacts from agricultural land use.

Dr. Jonathan Witter and other researchers at The Ohio State University are studying how different channel designs affect nutrient and sediment retention dynamics along experimental reaches of drainage channels in central and northwest Ohio.