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Water budget estimation on a data limited wetland: The case of the Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta, Colombia
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 30 credits / 45 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

At the end of the 20th century, the combination of climatic and anthropogenic events resulted in hyper salinity conditions in the coastal wetland Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta (CGSM), Colombia. Although salinity concentrations are generally related to the type and quantity of water entering and exiting a wetland and to its internal hydrological dynamics, there have been no up to date hydrological studies on the CGSM. Here we show how a water budget can be used as a first-order of approximation to describe the CGSM's hydrology, despite data limitations. We collected hydroclimatic data to calculate and analyze the fluxes of water entering and exiting CGSM and their corresponding uncertainties. We find that the water budget is mostly affected by the precipitation regime, a result connected to studies of regional El Niño/La Niña effects. Scenario analyses show that contribution of freshwater from the streams coming down from the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range on the eastern side of CGSM is currently larger than that of the channels draining from Magdalena River to the west, in contrast to the general focus on the western side. However, Monte Carlo simulations suggest that the eastern freshwater inflow is insignificant in affecting the hydrological response of CGSM. These results outline the need to (1) increase understanding of the internal connectivity and circulation of CGSM and (2) further investigate the effect of agriculture on the eastern side of CGSM.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 78 p.
Keyword [en]
Data limited wetland, water budget, Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta
National Category
Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-109714OAI: diva2:766656
Available from: 2014-11-28 Created: 2014-11-27 Last updated: 2014-11-28Bibliographically approved

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Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology
Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources

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