Geologic and atmospheric input factors affecting watershed chemistry in upper michigan

George Rapp, Barbara W. Liukkonen, James D Allert, John A. Sorensen, Gary E. Glass, Orie L. Loucks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The relationships between watershed variables and lakewater chemistry were examined for 53 lakes in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to identify factors influencing lake sensitivity to atmospheric inputs. The lakes lie in three distinct geologic/geomorphic regions. Acid neutralization capacity (ANC), sulfate, and color were correlated with parameters related to atmospheric loading, watershed area and relief, hydrology, geology, and land use for the entire 53-lake set and for lower alkalinity subsets. Acid-neutralizing capacity was related to atmospheric acidic inputs and, in the southern portion of the Upper Peninsula, to the presence of mineralized groundwater inputs. In the north, ANC is correlated with hydrologic lake type and surficial deposits. Results show the highest density of acidified lakes in the northern region, which is underlain by noncalcareous sedimentary rocks. Color was related to lake size and the presence of organic soils in the watershed, whereas lake sulfate concentration was mainly influenced by atmospheric or groundwater inputs, surficial deposits, and soil type.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-171
Number of pages17
JournalEnvironmental Geology and Water Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 1 1987


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