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What is a dead zone?


May 3, 2022
By American Society of Agronomy (ASA), Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), Soil Science Society of America (SSSA)

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Dead Zones are an area with no living beings. When a dead zone occurs within a waterbody, that zone has no aquatic life. Dead zones can be found around the world. They are a problem for coastal waters, bays, and lakes. The Soil Science Society of America’s (SSSA) May 1st Soils Matter blog reviews dead zones and practices that are reducing their size.

According to blogger Janith Chandrasoma, Dead Zones are typically caused by excess nutrients in the water, such as nitrogen and phosphorus. These nutrients cause an overgrowth of algae in a short period, commonly called “algae bloom.” As these microscopic “plants” grow, they consume oxygen in the water. And their multiplying population blocks sunlight for underwater plants. In addition, when the algae die, they sink to the bottom. As they decompose, more oxygen is consumed. | READ MORE