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Amid Flint Water Crisis, GIS Effort Maps City’s Pipes

The City of Flint, Michigan’s drinking water woes have been national news for weeks. So have the difficulties that those working on the ground have dealt with. One headache, which isn’t altogether uncommon for any American city, is poor record-keeping. As folks working to respond to the high levels of lead in the city’s water found, Flint’s water utility didn’t have data showing the precise locations of lead pipes in the city. So when researchers at the University of Michigan – Flint set out to begin a GIS mapping effort to document where city pipes were located, even before the current state of emergency declared in January, they found that there was little to work with. “We approached the city back in October (2015).

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Flood Warning Systems

Chapter Overview: Flood Warning A Real-Time Solution Streamflow Measurements Typical Flood Warning System Monitoring Location Data Management Quality Assurance Recommended Equipment Why Monitoring Matters While some areas are more prone to flooding than others, the establishment of flood warning systems near any major waterway or body of water provides critical information that can protect property and save lives. Of course, the most effective flood warning methods extend beyond the installation of gages and telemetry equipment, and employ qualified staff and carefully designed procedures to provide the earliest warning about whether a flood should be expected, when it will occur, and how severe it will be.

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Lake Whitefish Rely On Spawning For Stability

Many associate lake whitefish as part of the Great Lakes commercial fishery but there also is a recreational fishery for the fish in certain areas. Some areas where recreational fishers target lake whitefish include Grand Traverse Bay and Green Bay on Lake Michigan and Munising Bay on Lake Superior. For years, researchers with the Michigan Sea Grant and Michigan State University Extension have been involved with research and extension outreach projects on Great Lakes lake whitefish in cooperation with the commercial fishing industry. Questions that researchers get each year during ice fishing season regard many of the small lake whitefish in Munising Bay. The small lake whitefish populations there date back to the 1950s when they were first documented.

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Detecting Airborne Cyanobacteria Toxins

There are many ways to measure the concentrations of cyanobacteria in water, be it with specialized sensors or through discrete sampling and lab analysis. And since water is where the bacteria are produced, this makes sense. But for the toxins that they sometimes make, it’s a different story. For some time, there have been conversations questioning the possibility of these cyanobacterial toxins aerating, or becoming part of the air surrounding their sources in the form of mist or sloshed-up water. Is there a danger of breathing in the toxins, and how would you go about measuring them anyway? A new study led by scientists at the University of New Hampshire sets out to answer those questions.

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