National Geographic
Menu

Lisa Borre

www.worldlakes.org

Lisa Borre is a lake conservationist, freelance writer and avid sailor. With her husband, she co-founded LakeNet, a world lakes network, and co-wrote a sailing guide called “The Black Sea” based on their voyage around the sea in 2010. A native of the Great Lakes region, she served as coordinator of the Lake Champlain Basin Program in the 1990s. She is now an active member of the Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network.

Climate Change Already Having Profound Impacts on Lakes in Europe

For perspective on how climate change is affecting lakes, those of us here in the U.S. can just look across the pond, where scientists and the agencies involved in meeting the European Union’s Water Framework Directive have amassed an impressive body of research on the topic. Not only are extreme weather events such as droughts…

Frigid Forecast for Water Temperatures on Great Lakes This Summer

Of all the images of ice last winter, one of my favorites was a friend’s photo of crumpled sheets of blue ice on the west side of Beaver Island in northern Lake Michigan. With her smartphone, Denise McDonough snapped a photo that looked like it was taken by a polar explorer, not by one of…

Ice Cover Affects Lake Levels in Surprising Ways

The announcement last week that $300 million was included in the 2014 federal spending bill for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative was followed this week with more good news about water levels. The recent Arctic blast that gripped much of the nation will likely contribute to a healthy rise in Great Lakes water levels in 2014,…

PROJECT: ICE Documentary Portrays Changing Climate on the Great Lakes

As the polar vortex descended on Washington, D.C. on Monday night, my husband and I joined Water Currents editor Brian Clark Howard for a private screening of PROJECT: ICE, a fascinating new documentary about the Great Lakes. What was conceived as a documentary about ferries and shipping on the Great Lakes became something else. During filming,…

Botulism Bacteria Blamed for Deaths of Waterbirds on Lake Ontario

Last year, I wrote about finding the carcasses of dead loons and cormorants on the shores of a Northern Lake Michigan beach. Now officials in New York are reporting similar waterbird deaths from Type E botulism on Lake Ontario. Sadly, finding type E botulism in waterbirds is becoming an “annual event in one or more…

Lake Science Goes High-Tech to Understand Impacts of Extreme Weather Events in Argentina

As I walked along the shore of the serene Laguna La Salada at the northern fringe of the Patagonia region of Argentina, I struggled to imagine the severity of the storm that wrecked havoc on this small lake and the rest of Buenos Aires province just six months before. The Southern Hemisphere spring was in…

Asian Carp Reproducing Naturally in Great Lakes Tributary

Scientists have confirmed for the first time that a species of the dreaded Asian carp has reproduced naturally in a Great Lakes tributary. While not the variety of Asian carp experts fear will do the most harm in the Great Lakes region, the results have important implications for those concerned about the spread of this…

Where Did the Water Go? Busting 5 Myths About Water Levels on the Great Lakes

Much-needed rain in the Great Lakes basin helped water levels recover somewhat this summer. Higher than average precipitation throughout most of the region in July left Lakes Erie and Ontario with above average water levels for this time of year, according to the most recent monthly water level report by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers…

Alpine Lakes in Austria Reflect Climate Change

It’s no longer just a question of whether the planet’s precious lakes are being affected by climate change. The evidence from observations is clear: changes in climate, especially in recent decades, have impacted lakes worldwide. With warming trends expected to continue, researchers are now turning their attention to predicting how this will affect lakes in…

Australian Lake Untouched by Climate Change, Called “God’s Bathtub” and Home to Tiny Perch

Researchers in Australia have found a lake that has defied the odds by showing a remarkable resilience to climate change. Blue Lake, the second largest lake on North Stradbroke Island just off the coast of Queensland, has been relatively untouched by changes in climate for the past 7,000 years, and has so far also resisted…

Harmful Algae Blooms Plague Lake Erie Again

Seeing the photos from the record-breaking algal bloom on Lake Erie in 2011 was like déjà vu for me. I grew up in the Great Lakes region in the 1960s and 1970s and remember the days when Lake Erie was declared “dead.” I later learned that the green scum that plagued the lake during summer…

New Concerns About Plastic Pollution in Great Lakes ‘Garbage Patch’

Until recently, my concept of a ‘garbage patch’ was of an area of ocean with large pieces of floating debris, the kind of stray fishing gear and trash from ships and shorelines that collect where currents form eddies far from view of most people. Having seen my share of sea trash in 20,000+ miles of…

Warming Lakes: Climate Change Threatens the Ecological Stability of Lake Tanganyika

Tropical lakes in East Africa don’t grab headlines the way polar bears do, but climate change is having an effect on them, too. Although the changes are not as visible as melting polar ice caps, they are no less real. As in many lakes around the world, water temperature is on the rise in Lake…

New Great Lakes Map Highlights Environmental Threats and Opportunities

A new environmental threat map of the Great Lakes serves as a powerful visualization tool for those interested in the challenges facing lake restoration efforts. The map brings to mind the adage, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” But the colorful image is worth even more than that – the red, orange, and blue…

Lakes Michigan and Huron Fall to Record Lows

It looks like low water levels on the Great Lakes will be added to the record-breaking climate-related events of 2012. The water level on Lakes Michigan and Huron dropped another 2.5 inches (6 cm) in December, unofficially breaking a nearly 50-year-old record for the month. Last month’s average for both lakes – considered one lake…