Daily Egyptian

Students invited to help clean up Campus Lake

Pipes used to drain Campus Lake are seen Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016, near Thompson Point. (Autumn Suyko |@AutumnSuyko_DE)

Pipes used to drain Campus Lake are seen Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016, near Thompson Point. (Autumn Suyko |@AutumnSuyko_DE)

By Francois Gatimu

The Shawnee Group of the Sierra Club is inviting community members to help restore Campus Lake.

The cleanup will be focused on raking up a layer of dead algae and debris covering the exposed lake bed on the south side of Campus Lake in order to improve the quality of water as the lake refills. The organization has volunteer shifts from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Groups will meet under a Sierra Club canopy on the walkway near the old campus beach. Volunteers interested in participating are encouraged to bring old shoes or boots, work gloves and drinking water.

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The effort comes after a long string of actions taken by the university to counter the effects of toxic algae blooms, also known as cyanobacteria, on the lake, which has been closed to the public since June.

In September, the university hired a contractor to partially drain the lake six to eight feet, revealing about 20 acres of shoreline. This also removed as much as 46 million pounds of material from the body of water.

Kevin Bame, SIU’s vice chancellor for administration and finance, said in a September interview that it will take about 12 to 15 months for the water to return to its normal levels after being drained.

Staff writer Francois Gatimu can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @frankDE28.

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