Lake Forest Open Lands presents an informative and engaging lecture series. Join us to explore with leading research scientists the Great Lakes' most influencial environmental, biological and geological developments and how they affect our daily lives.


Gorton Community Center
400 E. Illinois Road
Lake Forest

This series is offered in partnership with Gorton Community Center and Lake Forest College and is FREE OF CHARGE thanks to funding support from the Illinois DNR's Coastal Management Program.

THE PERILS OF PLASTIC

Wednesday, September 12
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Dr. Sherri (Sam) Mason, Professor of Chemistry, Chair, Department of Geology & Environmental Sciences, State University of New York, Fredonia

Given the abundance of plastic within the world's oceans, it is not surprising that plastic particles have been found in all of the Great Lakes. The counts obtained rival those within the world's ocean. We hope to build an understanding of the types and abundance of plastics within the Great Lakes and other freshwater systems, laying the groundwork for important additional investigations into their ecosystem impacts. Dr. Mason’s work is at the forefront of research on plastic pollution within freshwater ecosystems.

TOXIC PUZZLE: HARMFUL ALGAE BLOOMS, OUR HEALTH AND THE HEALTH OF THE GREAT LAKES

Wednesday, October 10
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Film and Discussion

Dr. George Bullerjahn, Professor of Research Excellence Biological Sciences, Bowling Green State University

Following the film, Toxic Puzzle, Dr. Bullerjahn, Director of the NIH/NSF Lake Erie Center for Fresh Waters and Human Health will discuss toxic, nutrient pollution which pose threats to fresh water resources all over the world. This has yielded harmful algae blooms affecting drinking water for tens of millions of people. Prevention and mitigation of these bloom events require an understanding of the environmental conditions. This film and presentation will cover a range of topics ranging from algal physiology to land use management, and how these studies can inform public policy aimed at protecting the public from these threats.

DYNAMIC SHORE: WATER, WAVES, AND COASTAL CHANGE

Thursday, November 15
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Dr. Ethan Theuerkauf, Illinois Coastal Geologist, University of Illinois

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Coastal geologic change occurs across time from minutes to millennia and is driven by a variety of processes, including waves, water levels, and ice. Dr. Theuerkauf will explore these processes and dynamics of coastal geologic change along Western Lake Michigan. The mechanisms and implications of coastal change will be discussed as well as the technology and instruments utilized in this work, such as drones, sonar, and sediment coring. The talk will culminate with a discussion of how this research is used to improve coastal management and assess climate change.