Lake Superior might hit record low levels

Aug 15, 2007

Lake Superior is nearing a record low level for the month of August and might set records for September and October, U.S. government hydrologists said.

Scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration can forecast lake levels 12 months in advance, using current hydrological conditions combined with long-term climate outlooks.

"Lake Superior is less than 6 centimeters (2.3 inches) higher than its August record low of 182.97 meters (600 feet) which was set in 1926, and it looks as though the water levels may continue to plunge," said Cynthia Sellinger, deputy director of NOAA's Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Sellinger said NOAA's lake level forecasts predict a 15 percent to 20 percent probability that new monthly records will be set some time this fall.

The researchers said for every inch Lake Superior drops, 529 billion gallons of water are displaced. During the past decade, 12.7 trillion gallons of water have left Lake Superior.

The lake's all-time record low of 182.69 meters (599.37 feet) was set in April 1926 as a result of a major climatic event that led to the nation's infamous dust bowl era.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: 2014 confirmed as one of the warmest years on record globally

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Catch the northern lights with your mobile

4 minutes ago

Updates on the best opportunities to spot the Northern Lights in the UK are now available on a mobile phone app developed in association with scientists at Lancaster University.

Practicing nursing care in a virtual world

14 minutes ago

Oculus Rift, a gaming headset, can  help teach nurses how to communicate better, researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology have found.

Recommended for you

Montana oil spill estimate lowered to 30,000 gallons

8 hours ago

Authorities have lowered their estimate of how much oil spilled from a broken pipeline beneath the Yellowstone River in eastern Montana, briefly contaminating the water supply of a city downstream.

British lawmakers demand freeze on fracking

22 hours ago

A committee of British lawmakers demanded a national moratorium on fracking due to environmental concerns on Monday, ahead of a crucial vote intended to boost the shale gas industry.

UN moves toward major treaty for ocean biodiversity

Jan 25, 2015

UN member states agreed Saturday to begin negotiations on a treaty to protect marine biodiversity in ocean areas extending beyond territorial waters, in a move heralded by environmental organizations.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.