Describes the color of a body of water in the environment. Highly colored water has significant effects on aquatic plants and algal growth. Light is very critical for the growth of aquatic plants and colored water can limit the penetration of light. Thus a highly colored body of water could not sustain aquatic life which could lead to the long term impairment of the ecosystem. Very high algal growth that stays suspended in a water body can almost totally block light penetration as well as use up the dissolved oxygen in the water body, causing a eutrophic condition that can drastically reduce all life in the water body.
Definition source: United States Geological Survey