Red clay runoff in Lake Superior after torrential rains

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Photograph of Lake Superior coast near Duluth, Minnesota, taken by an astronaut on board the International Space Station. Image: NASA Earth Observatory.

By Kasha Patel

This story originally appeared on NASA Earth Observatory and is republished here with permission.

On June 17, 2018, northern Michigan and parts of Wisconsin received torrential rains. The flooding caused historical property damage and brought river discharge levels well above their averages, sending sediment runoff into Lake Superior.

This image, taken on June 19, 2018, by an astronaut onboard the International Space Station, shows sediment runoff into Lake Superior near Duluth, Minnesota. The Nemadji River regularly unloads red clay sediment into the Lake Superior Harbor, but the discharge was intensified during the flooding event and discolored waters.

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