Monongahela River Baseline

Human systems affect water quality and the aquatic communities that reside within fresh water systems. Anthropogenic land use and pollutant load changes can alter aquatic biological systems (see Figure), and a deepening understanding of these effects is needed.  The Monongahela River has an altered hydrologic regime (due to a series of navigational lock/dam structures) as well as changing urban and industrial activities in its basin.

The present study incorporates data from multiple researchers (at Chatham, University of Pittsburgh, California University of PA, and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History) on water quality and diversity of macroinvertebrates, fish and plants to develop a biological baseline.

The purpose of this baseline is to inform analysis of the river as development of new energy resources have the potential to alter the ecological and hydrological system.