Biogeochemistry of Lakes in the Mackenzie Delta
Principal Investigator: Lesack, Lance (23)
Licence Number: 13183
Organization: Simon Fraser University
Licenced Year(s): 2017 2016 2015 2014 2010 2009 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1994 1993
Issued: Apr 19, 2001
Project Team: Andrea Riedel, Bryan Spears, Laura Mervyn

Objective(s): Flooding and annual delivery of nutrient rich sediments are perceived to control the productivity of lakes and wetlands associated with the flood plains and deltas of major world rivers. However, there remains limited understanding of the hydrologic and and biogeochemical interactions between large rivers and lakes within their flood plains and limited appreciation of their important ecological roles. Least understood are north-flowing ice-covered rivers. The long-term goal of this research is to develop a biochemical model for lakes in the Mackenzie Delta and ultimately a more general ecosystem model for lakes in the flood plains and deltas of major rivers that could help assess the effects of multiple stresses on rivers as a result of global change. The shorter range goal is to identify and develop models of critical interlinkages between biogeochemical and hydrologic processes that are important to the ecological characteristics of Mackenzie Delta Lakes.

Project Description: The long-term goal of this research is to develop a model of the interacting biogeochemical and hydrologic processes that control the nutrient balance and primary productivity of lakes in the Mackenzie Delta region, and ultimately, a more general model for lakes associated with the flood plains and deltas of major world rivers. Work based at the Inuvik Research Centre will consist of field and lab work focused on small lakes in the Delta near Inuvik. Field work will involve day trips by boat or helicopter to delta lakes. In about 9 lakes from 2 areas of the delta near Inuvik (East channel south of Inuvik, Taylor channel in central part of the Delta) samples of aquatic plants will be taken back to the laboratory for identification and measurement of dry mass. Each lake will be visited once and the time spent there will be no more than half a day. As well at each lake the degree of thermokarst erosion will be measured by observation from the air and then by collection of lake sediment and water.