Nonpoint source pollution from nitrate-nitrogen (nitrate) and phosphorus (P) contributes to nutrient enrichment in local streams and lakes, leading to the development of hypoxic (dead) zones in regional water bodies, including
the Gulf of Mexico.
IGS researchers are investigating water quality and nutrient patterns, processes, scales, and trends throughout Iowa and the Upper Mississippi River Basin. Led by State Geologist Keith Schilling, IGS partners with scientists from University of Iowa, IIHR, Iowa State University, and several Iowa colleges (Grinnell, Coe, Kirkwood). We also work with commodity groups and non-government organizations such as The Nature Conservancy. Our research focuses on assessing current conditions and finding new and innovative solutions for water-quality problems. Some examples of recent projects provide a glimpse of some of this research.