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Natural and anthropogenic influences on aluminium in the humic rich waters of northern Sweden

Cory, Neil (2006). Natural and anthropogenic influences on aluminium in the humic rich waters of northern Sweden. Diss. (sammanfattning/summary) Uppsala : Sveriges lantbruksuniv., Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae, 1652-6880 ; 2006:63
ISBN 91-576-7112-5
[Doctoral thesis]

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The issue of acidification of surface waters has been one of the central environmental problems in Sweden for the last four decades. Aluminium (Al) is critical to the issue of acidification because it is often the combination of depressed pH along with elevated concentrations of Al, and specifically inorganic Aluminium (Ali), which are implicated in the decline and disappearance of aquatic organisms. In northern Sweden where sulphate deposition has not been as high as in the south, chronic soil acidification has not taken place; instead it is episodic acidification, especially during the spring snow melt that is important. The presence of organic matter complicates the issue of acidification and Al by providing both natural acidity and abundant binding capacity that reduces the inorganic fraction of Al. This thesis addresses the issue of anthropogenic influence in northern Sweden by examining Al solubility, speciation and modelling across spatial and temporal scales that range from a hillslope or episode to a landscape and decades. At the hillslope scale Al transport and speciation were strongly influenced by the organic phase. No front of Al mobilization was seen in the mineral soil that would be indicative of chronic soil acidification. The superficial, transiently saturated flow pathways in the riparian peats had accumulated a large amount of Al, and were the major source of Al leaving a hillslope transect. At the landscape levels the influence of landcover was important for both concentration and speciation of Al. Areas draining wetlands had lower concentrations of Al than forested sites despite significantly lower pH. This was attributed to source limitation, with wetlands lacking a mineral source of Al. Forested sites showed higher concentrations of total Al and Ali, especially during snowmelt episodes. Aluminium speciation was modelled for lake and river samples from Sweden’s national survey using the Windermere Humic Aqueous Model (WHAM). The calibration proved robust, and Ali could be correctly placed in toxicological classes in 89-95% of cases. Combining this modelling work with a tool for the modelling of anthropogenic impact of sulphate deposition during episodes (one-point Boreal Dilution Model, pBDM) allowed us to model Ali during spring snowmelt in a northern Swedish landscape from 1970-2020. This covers the period of peak anthropogenic sulphate deposition through to the full implementation of current emissions legislation. There was a major reduction in Ali and an increase in pH from 1970 to 2004, with smaller further improvements by 2020. From a toxicological viewpoint, the number of streams with Ali concentrations deemed toxic to acid tolerant species reduced from 64% in 1970 to 14% in 2004. This episodic acidification history should be borne in mind when assessing the aquatic biota in boreal regions where the stream chemistry has recovered but the biological recovery may still be ongoing.

Authors/Creators:Cory, Neil
Title:Natural and anthropogenic influences on aluminium in the humic rich waters of northern Sweden
Series Name/Journal:Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae
Year of publishing :2006
Number of Pages:30
ALLI. Cory, N., Laudon, H., Köhler, S., Seibert, J. & Bishop, K. Aluminium from soil to stream in a boreal catchment. Biogeochemistry (under review). II. Cory, N., Buffam, I., Laudon, H., Köhler, S. & Bishop, K. 2006. Landscape control of stream water aluminum in a boreal catchment during spring flood. Environmental Science & Technology 40, 3494-3500. III. Cory, N., Andrén, C. & Bishop, K. Modelling inorganic Aluminium with WHAM in environmental monitoring. Applied Geochemistry (Accepted). IV. Cory, N., Laudon, H., & Bishop, K. Past, present and future concentrations of inorganic Aluminium in a boreal landscape (Manuscript).
Place of Publication:Uppsala
ISBN for printed version:91-576-7112-5
Publication Type:Doctoral thesis
Full Text Status:Public
Agrovoc terms:aluminium, environmental impact, toxicity, surface water, acidification, water quality, models, sweden
Keywords:Aluminium, speciation, acidification, soil, water, DOC, organic matter, transport, ecotoxicology, modelling, WHAM, pBDM.
Permanent URL:
ID Code:1178
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Environmental Assessment (until 080831)
Deposited By: Neil Cory
Deposited On:01 Sep 2006 00:00
Metadata Last Modified:02 Dec 2014 10:10

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