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River Watchers detect Elevated Nitrate levels in drought-stricken Colorado River

By January 28, 2013No Comments

January 28, 2013:     Three students sampled water quality at Austin’s Colony where they detected elevated levels of nitrate.  After multiple months of elevated nitrate readings further downstream at both Little Webberville Park and Big Webberville Park, the high nitrate readings are not surprising, but are useful in showing the extent of the nitrate issue in this stretch of the river.  These sites are located downstream of the wastewater treatment plant effluent pipes for the City of Austin.  During the ongoing extreme drought of the last couple of years, the flow of the river has decreased and thus provided less dilution to the effluent as well to the other non-point source pollutants in the Colorado River.

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