The influence of changing lake ice conditions on the water quality of subarctic lakes

Project Name 

The influence of changing lake ice conditions on the water quality of subarctic lakes

ARI Team

Mike Palmer 


Subarctic lakes are undergoing rapid change with climate warming. One of the most widely observed consequences of climate warming on arctic and subarctic lakes has been a decrease in the duration of ice cover. Ice cover has an important influence on water quality by reducing atmosphere-water interactions, wind mixing, and light penetration. We are interested in exploring the cycling of metals and nutrients under ice and how changing lake ice conditions may influence some of these processes.  A better understanding of the physical and chemical limnology of lakes is important as changes in nutrient cycling impact overall productivity of lakes and changes in metal cycling influence the recovery of lakes from metal pollution.


This is a field-based project where water and sediment samples are collected multiple times a year to explore the seasonality of water and sediment chemistry in subarctic lakes of different sizes and mixing regimes.  The results of this study are shared with local resource management agencies and communities.    


This project will run from September 2020 to March 2023. 

External Partners 

Dr. Homa Kheyrollah Pour (Co-PI) (Wilfrid Laurier University); ReSEC Lab

Dr. Mike English (Wilfrid Laurier University)

Dr. John Chételat, Environment and Climate Change Canada

Dr. Jennifer Korosi, York University

Dr. Marc Amyot, Université de Montréal


Lake ice, Remote sensing, Climate change, Arsenic, Limnology, Nutrients, Water quality, Mining pollution

Start Date: 
Tuesday, September 1, 2020 to Friday, March 31, 2023