Nutrient Pollution and the Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone: Will Des Moines Water Works Be a Turning Point?

Comment by Amanda L. Crawford

This Comment discusses water quality issues that result from nutrient pollution, focusing on the Mississippi River Basin and the northern Gulf of Mexico. The nutrient pollution currently affecting the Mississippi and Gulf regions is primarily attributable to agriculture and has significant economic, ecological, and human health impacts. Without changes in current agricultural practices, nitrogen and phosphorous pollution have been predicted to more than double by 2050. Since 2009, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recognized that nutrient pollution is “one of the costliest, most difficult environmental problems we face” and causes “significant water quality and public health concerns,” including “growing drinking water impacts.” In light of this and looming water scarcity problems, it is imperative that we do more to address nutrient pollution.

About the Author

J.D. candidate 2017, Tulane University Law School; B.S. 2011, Pennsylvania State University. 


91 Tul. L. Rev. 157 (2016)