Continuous Monitoring of Nutrient and Sediment Loads from the Des Plaines River at Route 53 at Joliet, Illinois, Water Years 2018–20

Scientific Investigations Report 2021-5125
Groundwater and Streamflow Information Program
Prepared in cooperation with Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago
By:  and 

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Abstract

The Des Plaines River in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois is the principal conduit for the discharge of wastewater effluent and stormwater runoff from the greater Chicago metropolitan area. In November 2017, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, installed a continuous monitoring station to measure water quality and streamflow in the Des Plaines River at Joliet, Illinois. Surrogate models encompassing continuous data and discrete water-quality samples were used to estimate loads of nitrate, total phosphorus, and suspended sediment. Comparisons to other major rivers in Illinois show that the Des Plaines River is a substantial contributor to statewide loading estimates for nitrate and total phosphorus but only a minor contributor to suspended sediment. Future loading estimates of total phosphorus could include more research into the effects of combined sewage overflows because these effects likely increased model uncertainty. The results in this report document current loadings and provide a baseline from which to assess future water-quality management decisions.

Suggested Citation

Peake, C.S., and Hodson, T.O., 2021, Continuous monitoring of nutrient and sediment loads from the Des Plaines River at Route 53 at Joliet, Illinois, water years 2018–20: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2021–5125, 15 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20215125.

ISSN: 2328-0328 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Purpose and Scope
  • Methods
  • Data Coverage
  • Streamflow and Discrete Water-Quality Data
  • Loads and Yields
  • Uncertainty and Future Improvements
  • Summary
  • References Cited
Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Continuous monitoring of nutrient and sediment loads from the Des Plaines River at Route 53 at Joliet, Illinois, water years 2018–20
Series title Scientific Investigations Report
Series number 2021-5125
DOI 10.3133/sir20215125
Year Published 2022
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Central Midwest Water Science Center
Description Report: vii, 15 p.; Data Release; Database
Country United States
State Illinois
City Joliet
Other Geospatial Des Plaines River
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details