Approaches Towards Environmental Restoration

  • Tom Murphy
  • Hans G. Peterson


Some lake restoration problems are clearly global, and local treatments have little chance of success. Introduced species are one example where prevention has to be considered as the primary treatment. In the Great Lakes, introduced species like zebra mussels and round gobies are changing the ecosystem and threatening native species with extinction. There has been some control of introduced sea lamprey but only at great expense. Certainly, atmospheric loading of toxins like PCBs and dioxins into lakes must also be controlled at the source. Other contaminants, like mercury, probably need the same management, but consensus is not as clear. Once persistent contaminants are released into large bodies of water, they cannot be effectively treated. Sulfur loading is another aspect of atmospheric loading that is best controlled at the source. Sulfur loading into Lake Biwa, Japan is causing enhanced eutrophication. It is better to help continental Asia control their sulfur releases than to try to treat the problem in Lake Biwa. When lake restoration is used at a local level, it is still important to have at least a regional or national coordination. Treatment of lakes is often too expensive for local taxes and a higher level of government must be involved. For the most serious global water management problems, international cooperation is required. Water deficits in some areas are serious and may involve climate change driven by global factors like increases in carbon dioxide. Water management in the third world often requires global.


Aquatic Plant Great Lake Zebra Mussel Round Goby Copper Sulphate 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Tokyo 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tom Murphy
    • 1
  • Hans G. Peterson
    • 2
  1. 1.Environmental Conservation ServiceNational Water Research Institute, Ecosystem Science DirectorateEnvironmentCanada
  2. 2.WateResearch Corp.SaskatoonCanada

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