Sea Grant’s coastal engineer to discuss Great Lakes levels

More than an expected 100 water managers and researchers will gather virtually March 3 and 4 for the annual American Water Resources Association Wisconsin Section meeting to discuss and strategize regarding water challenges and opportunities. Adam Bechle, Wisconsin Sea Grant’s coastal engineer, will deliver a plenary talk.

Wisconsin has a wealth of water—1.2 quadrillion gallons of groundwater; lakes Michigan and Superior; the Mississippi, Wisconsin and St. Croix rivers; more than 5 million acres of wetlands; and more than 15,000 lakes—yet all that volume does not guarantee it’s without challenges and opportunities. That is especially true when balancing agriculture, the environment and public health.

The meeting will feature 80 presentations by researchers from the state’s University System schools, non-governmental agencies, water-related businesses and federal and state agencies.

There will be two plenary sessions. Bechle’s talk will take place at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, March 4. He will explore the reasons behind record-high water levels on the Great Lakes and what the future may bring.

Lake Michigan’s high water levels have had an effect on natural and manmade structures.

At 8:40 a.m. Wednesday, March 3, two speakers will discuss tracking COVID-19 through wastewater as well as how viruses move through groundwater.

Anyone is welcome to attend and registration is here.

The meeting is sponsored by the Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin with additional conference support from the University of Wisconsin Water Resources Institute, Sea Grant’s sister organization.