Campus Lake expected to reopen soon

By McKenzie Johnston, Staff Reporter

Campus lake is expected to reopen after being closed due to another algae bloom.

Deb Sarvela, Director and Environmental Compliance Engineer of the Center for Environmental Health and Safety, said the lake may reopen as soon as Monday pending test results. The lake passed its first preliminary 10-day check-up and will be retested on Oct. 7.

Sarvela said she expects the tests to come back negative.


Toxic algae blooms are caused by hot, dry conditions, Sarvela said. She said the only cure is rain and cooler temperatures. 

Campus lake and Evergreen lake were both closed on Sept. 20 due to toxic blue-green algae, according to Carbondale City Hall. Evergreen lake has since reopened to the public.

Campus lake underwent a deep cleaning in 2016 and previously would often be closed to the public for most of the summer, Sarvela said. She said it’s only closed once this summer.

See more: (SIU begins draining Campus Lake to combat toxic algae)

“Almost every lake in Illinois has blue-green algae bloom,” Sarvela said. “Carbondale has been very good this year.”

SIU has recently contributed solar fountains and water cannons, which have helped to aerate and cool the lake, Sarvela said. 

See more: (Leading the charge: Marjorie Brooks, leader in the classroom and in the field)


She said the change came because of Marjorie Brooks an associate professor of Zoology, Director of the Office of Sustainability Geory Kurtzhals and SIU’s engineering students. She said their work comprises “wonderful projects” which “do nothing but benefit the lake.”

Staff reporter McKenzie Johnston can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @TheMcKenzieJ.

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