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Long-term development of Phosphorus and Nitrogen loads through the subsurface and surface water systems of drainage basins
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology.
2008 (English)In: Global Biogeochemical Cycles, ISSN 0886-6236, Vol. 22, no 3, GB3022- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We analyze and compare simulations and controlling processes of the past 60 years and possible future short-and long-term development of phosphorus and nitrogen loading from the Swedish Norrstrom drainage basin to the Baltic Sea under different inland source management scenarios. Results indicate that both point and agricultural source inputs may need to be decreased by at least 40% in order to reach a long-term sustainable 30% reduction of anthropogenic coastal nitrogen loading, as required by national environmental goals. A corresponding 20% anthropogenic phosphorus load reduction goal may be reached in the short term by analogous combined 40% source input reduction, but appears impossible to maintain as a long-term achievement by inland source abatement only. In general, realistic quantification of the slow subsurface nutrient transport and accumulation-release dynamics may be essential for accurately predicting and managing nutrient loading to surface and coastal waters.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 22, no 3, GB3022- p.
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-24494DOI: 10.1029/2007GB003022ISI: 000258646100001OAI: diva2:197653
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-7108Available from: 2007-10-25 Created: 2007-10-09 Last updated: 2010-01-17Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Long-term development, modeling and management of nutrient loading to inland and coastal waters
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Long-term development, modeling and management of nutrient loading to inland and coastal waters
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Environmental and water system protection and restoration require accurate knowledge and quantification of waterborne pollutant transport, retention-release and transformation processes taking place in the subsurface, river, lake and sea water systems, and at the interfaces between these systems. This thesis investigates the importance of spatial model resolution for such quantification and the possible long-term nutrient load development under different human perturbations and nutrient source management scenarios in the Swedish Norrström drainage basin, based on simulations with the GIS-based dynamic nutrient transport-attenuation model POLFLOW. The results indicate substantial nutrient load contributions from the subsurface water system (soil water and groundwater) to surface waters, which may largely control present and future nutrient mass loads from drainage basins to downstream inland and coastal waters. This role of the subsurface water system needs to be acknowledged, in conjunction with the effects of expected climate change and population and lifestyle developments, for achieving successful and sustained decreases in nutrient loading to inland and coastal waters. The results point also towards a need for downstream nutrient load control and abatement measures, to complement nutrient source reduction programs. The results further indicate the importance of the chosen spatial model resolution and account for subgrid variability for the accuracy of the necessary coupled transport and attenuation modeling of nutrient spreading in, and export from, river networks to coastal systems. Failure to correctly conceptualize and accurately account for the physical transport processes and their subgrid variability in this modeling may also yield systematic misinterpretation of the biogeochemical processes and process rates. Further, this may have important practical implications for the necessary abatement effectiveness and efficiency of nutrient and other waterborne pollutant loading to inland and coastal waters worldwide.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Institutionen för naturgeografi och kvartärgeologi, 2007
Dissertations from the Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology, ISSN 1653-7211 ; 10
Nutrients, catchments, environmental management, climate change, population and lifestyle development, subsurface-surface water interactions, long-term simulations, nutrient retention, modeling, hydrology, transport processes, biogeochemistry, scaling, transport and reaction rates
Research subject
Physical Geography
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-7108 (URN)978-91-7155-507-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-11-15, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 8 C, Stockholm, 13:00
Available from: 2007-10-25 Created: 2007-10-09Bibliographically approved

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