More intense storms are making it harder for freshwater streams and rivers to act as filters for nitrogen pollution, according to a new UNH study.
The research suggests larger storms could cause more harmful runoff to reach coasts and lakes.
Nitrogen comes from lots of things people put in the land – like fertilizer and sewage. Rain and snow wash that pollution into streams and rivers.
But UNH researcher Wil Wollheim says those waterways can usually clean out the nitrogen before it reaches the coast.