Home > Explore News > Impacts and Solutions to Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia Highlighted on Illinois Public Radio

Impacts and Solutions to Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia Highlighted on Illinois Public Radio

Published on: 07/24/2019
Primary Contact(s): david.kidwell@noaa.gov

Shrimp boat underway in the Gulf of Mexico. Hypoxia is impacting commercial shrimp fishing. Credit NOAA Photo Library.

With a record setting dead zone predicted this summer, Illinois Public Media (aka WILL Radio) has highlighted how Midwest pollution effects the ecology of the northern Gulf of Mexico. First-hand accounts from a shrimp fisherman, environmentalist, corn farmer, and NCCOS’s David Kidwell tell the story.

In a July 9, 2019 radio feature, a Louisiana shrimp fisherman tells a real-life account of the toll hypoxia has on his livelihood. Also, an environmentalist talks about urban sources of pollution from the upper Midwest, a corn farmer talks about techniques to control agricultural runoff, and NCCOS’ David Kidwell, Director of the NCCOS Competitive Research Program, discusses the dead zone’s history, how fertilizer runoff causes the dead zone, and what NOAA is doing to help solve the problem.

Source:  The 21st – How Midwest Pollution Ends Up In The Gulf with Niala Boohoo, Illinois Public Media, July 9, 2019.

For more information, contact David Kidwell.


Cotton is planted into wheat stubble. This farming operation utilizes minimum tillage methods to help conserve soil moisture, limit erosion, and reduce water use through irrigation systems. Credit USDA/ARS.

The Mississippi River watershed drains 1.245 million square miles, including all or parts of 31 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces. This generalized map illustrates how runoff from farms (green areas) and cities (red areas) drains into the Mississippi River, delivering nutrients into the Gulf of Mexico and fueling the annual hypoxic zone. Credit NOAA.

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