SCIENCE DRIVEN SOLUTIONS
Utah Lake has faced 150 years of degradation from various sources. To restore the lake to a clear water haven for native plants, fish, wildlife and humans alike, Lake Restoration Solutions (LRS) has hired world class scientists who specialize in the restoration of impaired waterways.
LAKE BOTTOM SURVEY
For our project to succeed, we need to understand the underwater topography (bathymetry) of the lake and the sediments found on the lakebed. In the discovery phase of this project, we’re working with top scientists and environmentalists to conduct thorough surveys and studies to help us design responsible, effective solutions to the lake’s issues.
From fall 2020-July 2021, HydroGEOPHYSICS and Cross Marine Projects completed a comprehensive lake-bottom survey. This survey used an electrical resistivity system to collect survey lines placed 1,000 feet apart over the nearly 1,000 miles of accessible areas of the lake. In addition, water depth, temperature, and conductivity data were collected along each survey line.
ELECTRICAL RESISTIVITY METHOD
Electrical resistivity is based on the capacity of earth materials to resist electrical current, and is a function of soil type, porosity, moisture, and dissolved salts. This helps researchers get an accurate picture of the lakebed to inform and direct future dredging efforts throughout the life of the project.
By surveying the lakebed through electrical resistivity, researchers can determine how much of the current lake bottom needs to be moved in order to reduce impact of wind and wave events, stop harmful algal blooms, and keep the water clear.
In 2021, Geosyntec analyzed the current status of the lake’s wetlands. They initially performed a desktop study using data from previous studies, reports, mapping, and lidar imagery. Their team of biologists then traveled by boat around the lake to verify the results and conduct a function assessment of the wetlands. Verifying these wetlands will ensure they will not be negatively impacted. This research will also help us find ways to enhance them and ensure long-term sustainability.
PARTNERING WITH GEOSYNTEC TO ANALYZE WETLANDS
HARMFUL INVASIVE SPECIES IN UTAH LAKE WETLANDS
- Phragmites is a densely growing reed that displaces native plants and expands in wetland areas. It consumes tremendous amounts of water compared to native species.
- Carp are fish that consume and destroy underwater vegetation that normally helps secure the lake bottom sediment and allows wetland plants to establish their roots.
Using data from lakebed surveys and wetland verification, we are able to identify the impact of these invasive species on the lake. This data will also help us create healthier environments for native species to thrive.
There is always more to learn about Utah Lake. Keep checking back as we share what we gather through field studies, data collection, and collaboration with experts.
DRIVEN BY SCIENCE.
POWERED BY PASSION.
We’re working with world-class scientists and engineers to save Utah Lake after more than 150 years of degradation. Our plans are informed by proven technology and data to ensure a responsible, sustainable path forward for the lake and surrounding area. Learn all about the partnerships, studies, and assessments that are driving this project from concept to reality.