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    The quality of reservoir water is important to the health and wellbeing of human and animals. Eutrophication is one of the most serious problems threatening the safety of reservoir water resource. Machine learning (ML) approaches are effective tools to understand and evaluate various environmental processes of concern, such as eutrophication. However, limited studies have compared the performances of different ML models to reveal algal dynamics using time-series data of redundant variables. In this study, the water quality data from two reservoirs in Macao were analyzed by adopting various ML approaches, including stepwise multiple linear regression (LR), principal component (PC)-LR, PC-artificial neuron network (ANN) and genetic algorithm (GA)-ANN-connective weight (CW) models. The influence of water quality parameters on algal growth and proliferation in two reservoirs was systematically investigated. The GA-ANN-CW model demonstrated the best performance in reducing the size of data and interpreting the algal population dynamics data, which displayed higher R-squared, lower mean absolute percentage error and lower root mean squared error values. Moreover, the variable contribution based on ML approaches suggest that water quality parameters, such as silica, phosphorus, nitrogen, and suspended solid have a direct impact on algal metabolisms in two reservoirs' water systems. This study can expand our capacity in adopting ML models in predicting algal population dynamics based on time-series data of redundant variables. Copyright © 2023 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


    Zhejun Li, Sin Neng Chio, Liang Gao, Ping Zhang. Assessing the algal population dynamics using multiple machine learning approaches: Application to Macao reservoirs. Journal of environmental management. 2023 May 15;334:117505

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    PMID: 36801801

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