New hybrid machine learning forecasts lake ecosystem responses to climate change

Through the middle of the 20th century, phosphorus inputs from detergents and fertilizers degraded the water quality of Switzerland’s Lake Geneva, spurring officials to take action in the 1970s to remediate the pollution.

“The obvious remedy was to reverse the phosphorus loading, and this simple idea helped enormously, but it didn’t return the lake to its former state, and that’s the problem,” said George Sugihara, a biological oceanographer at University of California San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

Sugihara, Boston University’s Ethan Deyle, and their colleagues spent five years searching for a better way to forecast and manage Lake Geneva’s ecological response to the threat of phosphorus pollution, to which the effects of climate change must now be added.

Read more…