Why have a research center at Clear Lake?
Clear Lake is a unique resource for scientific study. Being the largest natural freshwater lake in California and the oldest lake in North America, it is a tremendous resource for scientific research due to its unique characteristics.
With over 400 feet of sediment on its bottom, Clear Lake acts as nature’s time capsule, providing scientists a look back into millions of years of history. This information is useful for a number of purposes, including understanding how the Earth responds to climate change and how human impacts affect lakes over time. The information gained will be of benefit to locations all over the world.
Due to its complexity, Clear Lake has suffered historically from a lack of comprehensive understanding of its physical, chemical, and biological processes, which has made lake management difficult for government officials. For example, there is an information deficit when it comes to understanding events such as hazardous algal blooms (HAB), which have been an increasing occurrence across lakes worldwide in the 21st century. By concentrating efforts to study this and other lake processes, sustainable solutions are more likely to be developed, implemented, and shared by officials and citizens associated with lake management, not just at Clear Lake, but at other lakes around the world.