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Assessing critical load exceedances and ecosystem impacts of anthropogenic nitrogen and sulphur deposition at unmanaged forested catchments in Europe

Forsius, Martin and Posch, Maximilian and Holmberg, Maria and Vuorenmaa, Jussi and Kleemola, Sirpa and Augustaitis, Algirdas and Beudert, Burkhard and Bochenek, Witold and Clarke, Nicholas and de Wit, Heleen A. and Dirnboeck, Thomas and Frey, Jane and Grandin, Ulf and Hakola, Hannele and Kobler, Johannes and Kram, Pavel and Lindroos, Antti-Jussi and Löfgren, Stefan and Pecka, Tomasz and Rönnback, Pernilla and Skotak, Krzysztof and Szpikowski, Jozef and Ukonmaanaho, Liisa and Valinia, Salar and Vana, Milan (2021). Assessing critical load exceedances and ecosystem impacts of anthropogenic nitrogen and sulphur deposition at unmanaged forested catchments in Europe. Science of the Total Environment. 753 , 141791
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Abstract

Anthropogenic emissions of nitrogen (N) and sulphur (S) compounds and their long-range transport have caused widespread negative impacts on different ecosystems. Critical loads (CLs) are deposition thresholds used to describe the sensitivity of ecosystems to atmospheric deposition. The CLmethodology has been a key science-based tool for assessing the environmental consequences of air pollution. We computed CLs for eutrophication and acidification using a European long-term dataset of intensively studied forested ecosystem sites (n = 17) in northern and central Europe. The sites belong to the ICP IM and eLTER networks. The link between the sitespecific calculations and time-series of CL exceedances and measured site data was evaluated using long-term measurements (1990-2017) for bulk deposition, throughfall and runoff water chemistry. Novel techniques for presenting exceedances of CLs and their temporal development were also developed. Concentrations and fluxes of sulphate, total inorganic nitrogen (TIN) and acidity in deposition substantially decreased at the sites. Decreases in S deposition resulted in statistically significant decreased concentrations and fluxes of sulphate in runoff and decreasing trends of TIN in runoffweremore common than increasing trends. The temporal developments of the exceedance of the CLs indicated the more effective reductions of S deposition compared to N at the sites. There was a relation between calculated exceedance of the CLs and measured runoff water concentrations and fluxes, and most sites with higher CL exceedances showed larger decreases in both TIN and H+ concentrations and fluxes. Sites with higher cumulative exceedance of eutrophication CLs (averaged over 3 and 30 years) generally showed higher TIN concentrations in runoff. The results provided evidence on the link between CL exceedances and empirical impacts, increasing confidence in the methodology used for the European-scale CL calculations. The results also confirm that emission abatement actions are having their intended effects on CL exceedances and ecosystem impacts. (C) 2020 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V.

Authors/Creators:Forsius, Martin and Posch, Maximilian and Holmberg, Maria and Vuorenmaa, Jussi and Kleemola, Sirpa and Augustaitis, Algirdas and Beudert, Burkhard and Bochenek, Witold and Clarke, Nicholas and de Wit, Heleen A. and Dirnboeck, Thomas and Frey, Jane and Grandin, Ulf and Hakola, Hannele and Kobler, Johannes and Kram, Pavel and Lindroos, Antti-Jussi and Löfgren, Stefan and Pecka, Tomasz and Rönnback, Pernilla and Skotak, Krzysztof and Szpikowski, Jozef and Ukonmaanaho, Liisa and Valinia, Salar and Vana, Milan
Title:Assessing critical load exceedances and ecosystem impacts of anthropogenic nitrogen and sulphur deposition at unmanaged forested catchments in Europe
Series Name/Journal:Science of the Total Environment
Year of publishing :2021
Volume:753
Article number:141791
Number of Pages:12
Associated Programs and Other Stakeholders:SLU - Environmental assessment > Programme Acidification
SLU - Environmental assessment > Programme Eutrophication
ISSN:0048-9697
Language:English
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 105 Earth and Related Environmental Sciences > Environmental Sciences (social aspects to be 507)
Keywords:Air pollution, Environmental effects, Modelling, Biogeochemistry, Trends
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-108813
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-108813
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
DOI10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.141791
Web of Science (WoS)000588616700023
ID Code:19069
Faculty:NJ - Fakulteten för naturresurser och jordbruksvetenskap
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:01 Dec 2020 10:23
Metadata Last Modified:01 Dec 2020 10:31

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