The chemical characteristics of Furman Lake, its feeder streams, and the outlet stream that runs to the Reedy River have been studied for several years as part of the River Basins Research Initiative (RBRI) - the largest and longest-running interdisciplinary research program in the university's history. Spearheaded by the Earth and Environmental Sciences Department, the RBRI has sampled water from watersheds throughout the upstate since the late 1990's in an effort to determine the effects of suburban growth on water quality. Studies have examined the effects of wastewater treatment plants on nitrogen levels in streams, the effects of differences in land cover and vegetation type on water quality, and the effects of changes in water quality on the fish and invertebrate communities that inhabit the streams.
In this context, one group of Ecology students decide to study how water chemistry varied between the two feeder creeks to the lake, as one drains a forested area and the other drains the major dorm complex. In addition, they sampled upstream from the dorm complex to determine whether the chemistry of this steam changed as it passed this developed area. A link to their report is below:
Water Chemistry of Furman Lake Streams
Grace Flowers, Matt Medlin, Anna Leff, and Matt Aussprung