A new study of New Zealand’s lakes has found that around half of them are unhealthy.
A team of scientists from GNS Science and the Cawthron Institute is working on a project called Lakes380 to clean up 1700 contaminated lakes. They use special techniques like environmental DNA and high-resolution core scanning to collect data and study the health of lakes in New Zealand.
Co-leader Susie Wood said it’s important to take action before it’s too late. Our lakes are important not just culturally and socially, but also environmentally. We’re losing places that are culturally significant and our native freshwater species are threatened and declining in numbers.
The situation is much worse in the North Island where almost all of the island’s lakes are under threat due to urban development, farming, and forestry. What happens on the land has a significant impact on the water quality.
But there’s good news too! The team has launched an app to measure lake water quality which you can find on their website. So, let’s all work together to keep our lakes clean and healthy!