Abstract by Richard Williams

Personal Infomation

Presenter's Name

Richard Williams


Tiffany Thayne
Camille Hanoske

Degree Level


Abstract Infomation


Geological Sciences

Faculty Advisor

Steve Nelson


Human Impacts on the Provo Lake From Freeze Core Analysis


This study seeks to understand human impacts on Utah Lake, especially those since the 1800s, that may lead to harmful algal blooms. Three freeze cores were obtained from eastern Utah Lake, Goshen Bay, and Provo Bay, which record the last ~150 yr of sediment. The core was sliced into 1 cm samples for analysis. 210Pb will be used to determine sediment age and deposition rate. δ15N and δ13C will be used to determine changes in nutrient sources for flora and fauna in the lake. Quantitative X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis was used to determine the mineralogy of sediment over this interval, which reflects changes in water chemistry and sediment source. Diatoms will be taken from each sample and identified to help determine past water conditions. The Rock Eval pyrolysis method was used to determine hydrogen ratios in the sediment which helps indicate changes in flora. Preliminary results have been obtained but further analysis is needed. We expect to see changes in water chemistry as the result of waste from Geneva Steel and increasing fluxes of treated sewage in the lake resulting from population growth.