New England Watersheds: A Data Driven Portrait of Water Pollution in the North Eastern United States

  • Luis A Morales Boston College '18
Keywords: Water Quality, Water Chemistry, Environment


This paper examines the difference between a river that has had no human intervention and rivers with various amounts. huamn influence were evaluated through stream chemistry to determine each one’s overall water quality. water’s composition changes as it falls from the sky and flows over ground. This research makes use of the water chemistry data provided by the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest as well as from the New England Costal Basin National Water Quality Assessment. The data was used to compute monthly averages of ions such as Sodium, Chloride, Calcium and Magnesium. These averages were graphed and the trends analyzed. Data about each river’s drainage area, surrounding population density, and land usage lend insight to the reason for each river’s chemical composition. The study concluded that the land usage around a river has an effect on the chemical composition of the waters. The rivers surrounded by urban areas had significantly more total dissolved solids and high levels of dissolved sodium chloride, especially during the winter months. This is Evidence that anthropogenic effects controlled the stream chemistry.

Author Biography

Luis A Morales, Boston College '18

Luis Morales is a senior at Boston College studying Environmental Geoscience in the Morrissey College of Arts & Sciences. Born in New York City, he attended high school at Columbia Secondary School for Math, Science and Engineering. He is currently culminating his college experience with a yearlong research seminar. Outside of his academic work, Luis is passionate about service to his community and abroad. He was a mentor for an elementary school child and during spring break he was abroad in Kingston, Jamaica serving with the Jamaica Mustard Seed Communities to help serve children and adults with disabilities. At BC, he will be completing his fourth season dancing with Vida de Intensa Pasión: Boston College Latin Dance Team. Upon graduation, Luis aspires to become an Environmental Consultant.

How to Cite
Morales, L. A. (2018). New England Watersheds: A Data Driven Portrait of Water Pollution in the North Eastern United States. Elements, 13(2).