Analyzing the Effects of Precipitation on Water Quality in Silver Creek

Authors: Jesus Sanchez*, Southern Illinois University, Logan Pelo, Southern Illinois University , Adriana Martinez, Southern Illinois University
Topics: Environmental Science, Water Resources and Hydrology, Land Use
Keywords: Water Quality, Silver Creek, Precipitation
Session Type: Virtual Poster
Day: 4/8/2021
Start / End Time: 11:10 AM / 12:25 PM
Room: Virtual 51
Presentation File: Download

Silver Creek is a tributary of the Kaskaskia River in southwestern Illinois and is an agricultural stream that could potentially undergo significant changes due to climate change. For example, in the Midwest, climate change may mean alterations in precipitation patterns primarily leading to an increase in intensity and precipitation amount. Agricultural runoff, with the help of precipitation, can greatly affect the water quality in agricultural creek. In this study, we recorded precipitation amounts and examined dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids, electrical conductivity, pH, and temperature at six different sites along Upper Silver Creek to determine if precipitation affects these measurements. Using a FieldmasterĀ® Basic Water Bottle, samples were collected at every site on Sundays and Wednesday for 20 weeks. The sites were selected within the upper watershed portion of the creek and met the minimum criteria of at least 32,000 gallons of runoff going into the creek. By using data from nearby stations and two water gauges at sites three and four, we compare precipitation with the water quality data sampled from the creek to determine if any pattern exists. In this way, the measurements of dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids, electrical conductivity, pH, and temperature will tell us how rain is affecting water quality in the creek. This study will then begin to establish a pattern for this relationship that can be examined over time as precipitation patterns have the potential to change.

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