NAME Nitrate from Aquifers and influences on carbon cycling in Marine Ecosystems
Country: EU Projects
Start Date:Duration: 39
Project Type: RTD
Contract Number: EVK3-CT-2001-00066
Water and sanitation-->Water and sanitation Overview Water resources and their management -->Water resources and their management Overview
Currently very little is known regarding the importance of direct input of nitrate- bearing groundwater to the sea through the sea bottom. A few studies have shown that it does take place, but there is presently no detailed information on the controlling factors. A major factor must be the mode of emergence.
Detailed measurements of sea bottom fluxes, localized using thermal infrared aerial photography in combination with geophysical measurements, will reveal the mode and variation of groundwater emergence. Detailed geochemical profiling of the aquifer and the sea bottom, combined with direct measurement of the rates of nitrate reduction and rates of the other redox processes that may interact with this will take place.
The results will be used to build and calibrate novel numerical models capable of dealing with the complex of processes and density affected flow and fluxes. The bringing together of groundwater and marine expertise will lead to new insights regarding the processes at this important interface.
Nitrate enters the sea with groundwater discharging through the shore face at many locations along the European coast. The impact of this process on the state of euthrophication of the coastal marine environment is presently unknown. This project investigates the transport of nitrate through the shore face by groundwater discharge and the biogeochemical processes that together determine the net flux of groundwater nitrate into the marine environment. The findings will be quantified in coupled groundwater and marine models that will facilitate integrated coastal zone management with respect to the interests of agriculture and the use of the coastal marine environment in terms of recreation and food production