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The environment in Ohio has changed over time. The hydroclimate, which is the climate of the water, shows changes from the Industrial Revolution to the present. Evidence for these changes can be found in levels of δ18O and δ2H isotopes in the layers of sediment and water in the lakes of Northeast Ohio. Mass spectrometry can be used to test the levels of δ18O and δ2H isotopes from pore water samples within sediment cores. In this study, surface soil and water samples were collected from cores in Punderson Lake at Punderson State Park in Newbury, Ohio. Pore water was extracted from the sediment core every centimeter. Next the oxygen isotope composition (δ18O) and the levels of δ2H of the pore water in the sediment layers were measured using a Picarro Cavity Ringdown Spectrometer. A record of the δ18O and δ2H of Punderson Lake was then recorded to determine the climate variability over a period of approximately 350 years. Changes in the δ18O and δ2H of lake water can be used to see changes in precipitation and water balance. Determining past climate and hydroclimate changes can help us predict future changes in the climate of Northeast Ohio.

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Environmental Chemistry | Environmental Microbiology and Microbial Ecology


Student Researcher: Rachel Daley

Faculty Advisor: Fasong Yuan, Ph.D.

Climate Change from Oxygen Isotopic Variation of Pore Water from Sediments in Punderson Lake, Northeast Ohio