Philippe Van Cappellen


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The apparent temperature sensitivity (Q10) of peat soil respiration: A synthesis study
Haojie Liu, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Ying Zhao, Hongxing He, Philippe Van Cappellen, Bernd Lennartz
Geoderma, Volume 443

The temperature sensitivity (Q10) of soil respiration is a critical parameter in modeling soil carbon dynamics; yet the regulating factors and the underlying mechanisms of Q10 in peat soils remain unclear. To address this gap, we conducted a comprehensive synthesis data analysis from 87 peatland sites (350 observations) spanning boreal, temperate, and tropical zones, and investigated the spatial distribution pattern of Q10 and its correlation with climate conditions, soil properties, and hydrology. Findings revealed distinct Q10 values across climate zones: boreal peatlands exhibited the highest Q10, trailed by temperate and then tropical peatlands. Latitude presented a positive correlation with Q10, while mean annual air temperature and precipitation revealed a negative correlation. The results from the structural equation model suggest that soil properties, such as carbon-to-nitrogen ratio (C/N) and peat type, were the primary drivers of the variance in Q10 of peat respiration. Peat C/N ratios negatively correlated with Q10 of peat respiration and the relationship between C/N and Q10 varied significantly between peat types. Our data analyses also revealed that Q10 was influenced by soil moisture levels, with significantly lower values observed for peat soils under wet than dry conditions. Essentially, boreal and temperate peatlands seem more vulnerable to global warming-induced soil organic carbon decomposition than tropical counterparts, with wet peatlands showing higher climate resilience.

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Road salt-induced salinization impacts water geochemistry and mixing regime of a Canadian urban lake
Jovana Radosavljevic, Stephanie Slowinski, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Mahyar Shafii, Bahram Gharabaghi, Philippe Van Cappellen
Applied Geochemistry, Volume 162

The extensive use of road salts as deicers during winter months is causing the salinization of freshwater systems in cold climate regions worldwide. We analyzed 20 years (2001–2020) of data on lake water chemistry, land cover changes, and road salt applications for Lake Wilcox (LW) located in southern Ontario, Canada. The lake is situated within a rapidly urbanizing watershed in which, during the period of observation, on average 785 tons of road salt were applied annually. However, only about a quarter of this salt has reached the lake so far. That is, most salt has been retained in the watershed, likely through accumulation in soils and groundwater. Despite the high watershed salt retention, time series trend analyses for LW show significant increases in the dissolved concentrations of sodium (Na+) and chloride (Cl−), as well as those of sulfate (SO42−), calcium (Ca2+), and magnesium (Mg2+). The relative changes in the major ion concentrations indicate a shift of the lake water chemistry from the mixed SO42–Cl–Ca2+-Mg2+ type to the Na + -Cl- type. Salinization of LW has further been strengthening and lengthening the lake's summer stratification, which, in turn, has been enhancing hypoxia in the hypolimnion and increasing the internal loading of the limiting nutrient phosphorus. The theoretical salinity threshold at which fall overturn would become increasingly unlikely was estimated at around 1.23 g kg−1. A simple chloride mass balance model predicts that, under the current trend of impermeable land cover expansion, LW could reach this salinity threshold by mid-century. Our results also highlight the need for additional research on the accruing salt legacies in urbanizing watersheds because they represent potential long-term threats to water quality for receiving freshwater ecosystems and regional groundwater resources.

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Co-precipitation of iron and silicon: Reaction kinetics, elemental ratios and the influence of phosphorus
Lu Huang, Chris T. Parsons, Stephanie Slowinski, Philippe Van Cappellen
Chemosphere, Volume 349

A sufficient supply of dissolved silicon (DSi) relative to dissolved phosphorus (DP) may decrease the likelihood of harmful algal blooms in eutrophic waters. Oxidative precipitation of Fe(II) at oxic-anoxic interfaces may contribute to the immobilization of DSi, thereby exerting control over the DSi availability in the overlying water. Nevertheless, the efficacy of DSi immobilization in this context remains to be precisely determined. To investigate the behavior of DSi during Fe(II) oxidation, anoxic solutions containing mixtures of aqueous Fe(II), DSi, and dissolved phosphorus (DP) were exposed to dissolved oxygen (DO) in the batch system. The experimental data, combined with kinetic reaction modeling, indicate that DSi removal during Fe(II) oxidation occurs via two pathways. At the beginning of the experiments, the oxidation of Fe(II)-DSi complexes induces the fast removal of DSi. Upon complete oxidation of Fe(II), further DSi removal is due to adsorption to surface sites of the Fe(III) oxyhydroxides. The presence of DP effectively competes with DSi via both of these pathways during the initial and later stages of the experiments, with as a result more limited removal of DSi during Fe(II) oxidation. Overall, we conclude that at near neutral pH the oxidation of Fe(II) has considerable capacity to immobilize DSi, where the rapid homogeneous oxidation of Fe(II)-DSi results in greater DSi removal compared to surface adsorption. Elevated DP concentration, however, effectively outcompetes DSi in co-precipitation interactions, potentially contributing to enhanced DSi availability within aquatic systems.


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Modeling multi-year phosphorus dynamics in a bioretention cell: Phosphorus partitioning, accumulation, and export
Bowen Zhou, Mahyar Shafii, Chris T. Parsons, Elodie Passeport, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Ariel Lisogorsky, Philippe Van Cappellen
Science of The Total Environment, Volume 876

Phosphorus (P) export from urban areas via stormwater runoff contributes to eutrophication of downstream aquatic ecosystems. Bioretention cells are a Low Impact Development (LID) technology promoted as a green solution to attenuate urban peak flow discharge, as well as the export of excess nutrients and other contaminants. Despite their rapidly growing implementation worldwide, a predictive understanding of the efficiency of bioretention cells in reducing urban P loadings remains limited. Here, we present a reaction-transport model to simulate the fate and transport of P in a bioretention cell facility in the greater Toronto metropolitan area. The model incorporates a representation of the biogeochemical reaction network that controls P cycling within the cell. We used the model as a diagnostic tool to determine the relative importance of processes immobilizing P in the bioretention cell. The model predictions were compared to multi-year observational data on 1) the outflow loads of total P (TP) and soluble reactive P (SRP) during the 2012-2017 period, 2) TP depth profiles collected at 4 time points during the 2012-2019 period, and 3) sequential chemical P extractions performed on core samples from the filter media layer obtained in 2019. Results indicate that exfiltration to underlying native soil was principally responsible for decreasing the surface water discharge from the bioretention cell (63 % runoff reduction). From 2012 to 2017, the cumulative outflow export loads of TP and SRP only accounted for 1 % and 2 % of the corresponding inflow loads, respectively, hence demonstrating the extremely high P reduction efficiency of this bioretention cell. Accumulation in the filter media layer was the predominant mechanism responsible for the reduction in P outflow loading (57 % retention of TP inflow load) followed by plant uptake (21 % TP retention). Of the P retained within the filter media layer, 48 % occurred in stable, 41 % in potentially mobilizable, and 11 % in easily mobilizable forms. There were no signs that the P retention capacity of the bioretention cell was approaching saturation after 7 years of operation. The reactive transport modeling approach developed here can in principle be transferred and adapted to fit other bioretention cell designs and hydrological regimes to estimate P surface loading reductions at a range of temporal scales, from a single precipitation event to long-term (i.e., multi-year) operation.

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Fluvial Deposition and Land Use Change Control Selenium Occurrence in Mollisols of Cold Region Agroecosystems
Kunfu Pi, Philippe Van Cappellen, Yiqun Gan, Xinlin Zhong, Lei Tong, Weitao Chen, Xun Wang, Yanxin Wang
Environmental Science & Technology, Volume 57, Issue 1

Mollisols support the most productive agroecosystems in the world. Despite their critical links to food quality and human health, the varying distributions of selenium (Se) species and factors governing Se mobility in the mollisol vadose zone remain elusive. This research reveals that, in northern mollisol agroecosystems, Se hotspots (≥0.32 mg/kg) prevail along the regional river systems draining the Lesser Khingan Mountains, where piedmont Se-rich oil shales are the most probable source of regional Se. While selenate and selenite dominate Se species in the water-soluble and absorbed pools, mollisol organic matter is the major host for Se. Poorly crystalline and crystalline Fe oxides are subordinate in Se retention, hosting inorganic and organic Se at levels comparable to those in the adsorbed pool. The depth-dependent distributions of mollisol Se species for the non-cropland and cropland sites imply a predominance of reduced forms of Se under the mildly acidic and reducing conditions that, in turn, are variably impacted by agricultural land use. These findings therefore highlight that fluvial deposition and land use change together are the main drivers of the spatial variability and speciation of mollisol Se.

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Effects of freeze-thaw cycles on methanogenic hydrocarbon degradation: Experiment and modeling
Mehdi Ramezanzadeh, Stephanie Slowinski, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Kathleen Murr, Christina Lam, Christina M. Smeaton, Clément Alibert, Marianne Vandergriendt, Philippe Van Cappellen
Chemosphere, Volume 325

Cold regions are warming much faster than the global average, resulting in more frequent and intense freeze-thaw cycles (FTCs) in soils. In hydrocarbon-contaminated soils, FTCs modify the biogeochemical and physical processes controlling petroleum hydrocarbon (PHC) biodegradation and the associated generation of methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2). Thus, understanding the effects of FTCs on the biodegradation of PHCs is critical for environmental risk assessment and the design of remediation strategies for contaminated soils in cold regions. In this study, we developed a diffusion-reaction model that accounts for the effects of FTCs on toluene biodegradation, including methanogenic biodegradation. The model is verified against data generated in a 215 day-long batch experiment with soil collected from a PHC contaminated site in Ontario, Canada. The fully saturated soil incubations with six different treatments were exposed to successive 4-week FTCs, with temperatures oscillating between −10 °C and +15 °C, under anoxic conditions to stimulate methanogenic biodegradation. We measured the headspace concentrations and 13C isotope compositions of CH4 and CO2 and analyzed the porewater for pH, acetate, dissolved organic and inorganic carbon, and toluene. The numerical model represents solute diffusion, volatilization, sorption, as well as a reaction network of 13 biogeochemical processes. The model successfully simulates the soil porewater and headspace concentration time series data by representing the temperature dependencies of microbial reaction and gas diffusion rates during FTCs. According to the model results, the observed increases in the headspace concentrations of CH4 and CO2 by 87% and 136%, respectively, following toluene addition are explained by toluene fermentation and subsequent methanogenesis reactions. The experiment and the numerical simulation show that methanogenic degradation is the primary toluene attenuation mechanism under the electron acceptor-limited conditions experienced by the soil samples, representing 74% of the attenuation, with sorption contributing to 11%, and evaporation contributing to 15%. Also, the model-predicted contribution of acetate-based methanogenesis to total produced CH4 agrees with that derived from the 13C isotope data. The freezing-induced soil matrix organic carbon release is considered as an important process causing DOC increase following each freezing period according to the calculations of carbon balance and SUVA index. The simulation results of a no FTC scenario indicate that, in the absence of FTCs, CO2 and CH4 generation would decrease by 29% and 26%, respectively, and that toluene would be biodegraded 23% faster than in the FTC scenario. Because our modeling approach represents the dominant processes controlling PHC biodegradation and the associated CH4 and CO2 fluxes, it can be used to analyze the sensitivity of these processes to FTC frequency and duration driven by temperature fluctuations.


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Agricultural phosphorus surplus trajectories for Ontario, Canada (1961–2016), and erosional export risk
Tamara L. Van Staden, K. J. Van Meter, N. B. Basu, Chris T. Parsons, Zahra Akbarzadeh, Philippe Van Cappellen
Science of The Total Environment, Volume 818

Management strategies aimed at reducing nutrient enrichment of surface waters may be hampered by nutrient legacies that have accumulated in the landscape. Here, we apply the Net Anthropogenic Phosphorus Input (NAPI) model to reconstruct the historical phosphorus (P) input trajectories for the province of Ontario, which encompasses the Canadian portion of the drainage basin of the Laurentian Great Lakes (LGL). NAPI considers P inputs from detergent, human and livestock waste, fertilizer inputs, and P outputs by crop uptake. During the entire time period considered, from 1961 to 2016, Ontario experienced positive annual NAPI values. Despite a generally downward NAPI trend since the late 1970s, the lower LGL, especially Lake Erie, continue to be plagued by algal blooms. When comparing NAPI results and river monitoring data for the period 2003 to 2013, P discharged by Canadian rivers into Lake Erie only accounts for 12.5% of the NAPI supplied to the watersheds' agricultural areas. Thus, over 85% of the agricultural NAPI is retained in the watersheds where it contributes to a growing P legacy, primarily as soil P. The slow release of legacy P therefore represents a long-term risk to the recovery of the lake. To help mitigate this risk, we present a methodology to spatially map out the source areas with the greatest potential of erosional export of legacy soil P to surface waters. These areas should be prioritized in soil conservation efforts.

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Nitrogen Leaching From Agricultural Soils Under Imposed Freeze-Thaw Cycles: A Column Study With and Without Fertilizer Amendment
Konrad Krogstad, Mehdi Gharasoo, Grant J. Jensen, Laura Hug, David L. Rudolph, Philippe Van Cappellen, Fereidoun Rezanezhad
Frontiers in Environmental Science, Volume 10

Cold regions are warming faster than the rest of the planet, with the greatest warming occurring during the winter and shoulder seasons. Warmer winters are further predicted to result in more frequent soil freezing and thawing events. Freeze-thaw cycles affect biogeochemical soil processes and alter carbon and nutrient export from soils, hence impacting receiving ground and surface waters. Cold region agricultural management should therefore consider the possible effects on water quality of changing soil freeze-thaw dynamics under future climate conditions. In this study, soil column experiments were conducted to assess the leaching of fertilizer nitrogen (N) from an agricultural soil during the non-growing season. Identical time series temperature and precipitation were imposed to four parallel soil columns, two of which had received fertilizer amendments, the two others not. A 15-30-15 N-P-K fertilizer (5.8% ammonium and 9.2% urea) was used for fertilizer amendments. Leachates from the soil columns were collected and analyzed for major cations and anions. The results show that thawing following freezing caused significant export of chloride (Cl − ), sulfate (SO 4 2− ) and nitrate (NO 3 − ) from the fertilizer-amended soils. Simple plug flow reactor model calculations indicated that the high NO 3 − concentrations produced during the fertilized soil thawing events were due to nitrification of fertilizer N in the upper oxidized portion of the soil. The very low concentrations of NO 3 − and ammonium in the non-fertilized soils leachates implied that the freeze-thaw cycles had little impact on the mineralization of soil organic N. The findings, while preliminary, indicate that unwanted N enrichment of aquifers and rivers in agricultural areas caused by fall application of N fertilizers may be exacerbated by changing freeze-thaw activity.

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Current State of Microplastic Pollution Research Data: Trends in Availability and Sources of Open Data
Tia Jenkins, Bhaleka Persaud, Win Cowger, Kathy Szigeti, Dominique G. Roche, Erin Clary, Stephanie Slowinski, Benjamin Lei, Amila Abeynayaka, Ebenezer S. Nyadjro, Thomas Maes, Leah M. Thornton Hampton, Melanie Bergmann, Julian Aherne, Sherri A. Mason, John F. Honek, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Amy Lusher, Andy M. Booth, Rodney D. L. Smith, Philippe Van Cappellen
Frontiers in Environmental Science, Volume 10

The rapid growth in microplastic pollution research is influencing funding priorities, environmental policy, and public perceptions of risks to water quality and environmental and human health. Ensuring that environmental microplastics research data are findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR) is essential to inform policy and mitigation strategies. We present a bibliographic analysis of data sharing practices in the environmental microplastics research community, highlighting the state of openness of microplastics data. A stratified (by year) random subset of 785 of 6,608 microplastics articles indexed in Web of Science indicates that, since 2006, less than a third (28.5%) contained a data sharing statement. These statements further show that most often, the data were provided in the articles’ supplementary material (38.8%) and only 13.8% via a data repository. Of the 279 microplastics datasets found in online data repositories, 20.4% presented only metadata with access to the data requiring additional approval. Although increasing, the rate of microplastic data sharing still lags behind that of publication of peer-reviewed articles on environmental microplastics. About a quarter of the repository data originated from North America (12.8%) and Europe (13.4%). Marine and estuarine environments are the most frequently sampled systems (26.2%); sediments (18.8%) and water (15.3%) are the predominant media. Of the available datasets accessible, 15.4% and 18.2% do not have adequate metadata to determine the sampling location and media type, respectively. We discuss five recommendations to strengthen data sharing practices in the environmental microplastic research community.

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Managing nitrogen legacies to accelerate water quality improvement
Nandita B. Basu, K. J. Van Meter, D. Byrnes, Philippe Van Cappellen, Roy Brouwer, Brian H. Jacobsen, Jerker Jarsjö, David L. Rudolph, Maria da Conceição Cunha, Natalie Nelson, Ruchi Bhattacharya, Søren Bøye Olsen
Nature Geoscience, Volume 15, Issue 2

Increasing incidences of eutrophication and groundwater quality impairment from agricultural nitrogen pollution are threatening humans and ecosystem health. Minimal improvements in water quality have been achieved despite billions of dollars invested in conservation measures worldwide. Such apparent failures can be attributed in part to legacy nitrogen that has accumulated over decades of agricultural intensification and that can lead to time lags in water quality improvement. Here, we identify the key knowledge gaps related to landscape nitrogen legacies and propose approaches to manage and improve water quality, given the presence of these legacies.

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Rates and timing of chlorophyll-<i>a</i> increases and related environmental variables in global temperate and cold-temperate lakes
Hannah Adams, Jane J. Ye, Bhaleka Persaud, Stephanie Slowinski, Homa Kheyrollah Pour, Philippe Van Cappellen
Earth System Science Data, Volume 14, Issue 11

Abstract. Lakes are key ecosystems within the global biogeosphere. However, the environmental controls on the biological productivity of lakes – including surface temperature, ice phenology, nutrient loads, and mixing regime – are increasingly altered by climate warming and land-use changes. To better characterize global trends in lake productivity, we assembled a dataset on chlorophyll-a concentrations as well as associated water quality parameters and surface solar radiation for temperate and cold-temperate lakes experiencing seasonal ice cover. We developed a method to identify periods of rapid net increase of in situ chlorophyll-a concentrations from time series data and applied it to data collected between 1964 and 2019 across 343 lakes located north of 40∘. The data show that the spring chlorophyll-a increase periods have been occurring earlier in the year, potentially extending the growing season and increasing the annual productivity of northern lakes. The dataset on chlorophyll-a increase rates and timing can be used to analyze trends and patterns in lake productivity across the northern hemisphere or at smaller, regional scales. We illustrate some trends extracted from the dataset and encourage other researchers to use the open dataset for their own research questions. The PCI dataset and additional data files can be openly accessed at the Federated Research Data Repository at (Adams et al., 2021).

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The definition of the non-growing season matters: a case study of net ecosystem carbon exchange from a Canadian peatland
Arash Rafat, Eunji Byun, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, William L. Quinton, Elyn Humphreys, Kara Webster, Philippe Van Cappellen
Environmental Research Communications, Volume 4, Issue 2

Abstract Climate change is a threat to the 500 Gt carbon stored in northern peatlands. As the region warms, the rise in mean temperature is more pronounced during the non-growing season (NGS, i.e., winter and parts of the shoulder seasons) when net ecosystem loss of carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) occurs. Many studies have investigated the impacts of climate warming on NGS CO 2 emissions, yet there is a lack of consistency amongst researchers in how the NGS period is defined. This complicates the interpretation of NGS CO 2 emissions and hinders our understanding of seasonal drivers of important terrestrial carbon exchange processes. Here, we analyze the impact of alternative definitions of the NGS for a peatland site with multiple years of CO 2 flux records. Three climatic parameters were considered to define the NGS: air temperature, soil temperature, and snow cover. Our findings reveal positive correlations between estimates of the cumulative non-growing season net ecosystem CO 2 exchange (NGS-NEE) and the length of the NGS for each alternative definition, with the greatest proportion of variability explained using snow cover ( R 2 = 0.89, p < 0.001), followed by air temperature ( R 2 = 0.79, p < 0.001) and soil temperature ( R 2 = 0.54, p = 0.006). Using these correlations, we estimate average daily NGS CO 2 emitted between 1.42 and 1.90 gCO 2 m −2 , depending on which NGS definition is used. Our results highlight the need to explicitly define the NGS based on available climatic parameters to account for regional climate and ecosystem variability.

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Amorphous silica dissolution kinetics in freshwater environments: Effects of Fe2+ and other solution compositional controls
Lu Huang, Chris T. Parsons, Stephanie Slowinski, Philippe Van Cappellen
Science of The Total Environment, Volume 851

The availability of dissolved silicon (DSi) exerts an important control on phytoplankton communities in freshwater environments: DSi limitation can shift species dominance to non-siliceous algae and increase the likelihood of harmful algal blooms. The availability of DSi in the water column in turn depends on the dissolution kinetics of amorphous silica (ASi), including diatoms frustules and phytoliths. Here, batch dissolution experiments conducted with diatom frustules from three diatom species and synthetic Aerosil OX 50 confirmed the previously reported non-linear dependence of ASi dissolution rate on the degree of undersaturation of the aqueous solution. At least two first-order dissolution rate constants are therefore required to describe the dissolution kinetics at high (typically, ≥0.55) and low (typically, <0.55) degrees of undersaturation. Our results further showed aqueous ferrous ion (Fe2+), which is ubiquitous in anoxic waters, strongly inhibited ASi dissolution. The inhibition is attributed to the preferential binding of Fe2+ to Q2 groups (i.e., surface silicate groups bonded to the silica lattice via two bridging oxygen) which stabilizes the silica surface. However, further increasing the aqueous Fe2+ concentration likely catalyzes the detachment of Q3 groups (i.e., silicate groups bonded to the silica lattice via three bridging oxygen) from the surface. Overall, our study illustrates the manyfold effects the aqueous solution composition, notably the inhibition effect of Fe2+ under anoxic conditions, has on ASi dissolution. The results help to explain the controversial redox dependence of DSi internal loading from sediments, which is vital to quantitatively understanding silicon (Si) cycling in freshwater systems.

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A perspective on applied geochemistry in porous media: Reactive transport modeling of geochemical dynamics and the interplay with flow phenomena and physical alteration
Hang Deng, Mehdi Gharasoo, Liwei Zhang, Zhenxue Dai, Alireza Hajizadeh, Catherine A. Peters, Cyprien Soulaine, Martin Thullner, Philippe Van Cappellen
Applied Geochemistry, Volume 146

In many practical geochemical systems that are at the center of providing indispensable energy, resources and service to our society, (bio)geochemical reactions are coupled with other physical processes, such as multiphase flow, fracturing and deformation. Predictive understanding of these processes in hosting and evolving porous media is the key to design reliable and sustainable practices. In this article, we provide a brief review of recent developments and applications of reactive transport modeling to study geochemically driven processes and alteration in porous media. We also provide a perspective on opportunities and challenges for continuously developing and expanding the role of this valuable methodology to advance fundamental understanding and transferable knowledge of various dynamic geochemical systems.

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Effects of riboflavin and desferrioxamine B on Fe(II) oxidation by O2
Peng Zhang, Philippe Van Cappellen, Kunfu Pi, Songhu Yuan
Fundamental Research, Volume 2, Issue 2

Flavins and siderophores secreted by various plants, fungi and bacteria under iron (Fe) deficient conditions play important roles in the biogeochemical cycling of Fe in the environment. Although the mechanisms of flavin and siderophore mediated Fe(III) reduction and dissolution under anoxic conditions have been widely studied, the influence of these compounds on Fe(II) oxidation under oxic conditions is still unclear. In this study, we investigated the kinetics of aqueous Fe(II) (17.8 μM) oxidation by O 2 at pH 5‒7 in the presence of riboflavin (oxidized (RBF) and reduced (RBFH 2 )) and desferrioxamine B (DFOB) as representative flavins and siderophores, respectively. Results showed that the addition of RBF/RBFH 2 or DFOB markedly accelerates the oxidation of aqueous Fe(II) by O 2 . For instance, at pH 6, the rate of Fe(II) oxidation was enhanced 20‒70 times when 10 μM RBFH 2 was added. The mechanisms responsible for the accelerated Fe(II) oxidation are related to the redox reactivity and complexation ability of RBFH 2 , RBF and DFOB. While RBFH 2 does not readily complex Fe(II)/Fe(III), it can activate O 2 and generate reactive oxygen species, which then rapidly oxidize Fe(II). In contrast, both RBF and DFOB do not reduce O 2 but react with Fe(II) to form RBF/DFOB-complexed Fe(II), which in turn accelerates Fe(II) oxidation. Furthermore, the lower standard reduction potential of the Fe(II)-DFOB complex, compared to the Fe(II)-RBF complex, correlates with a higher oxidation rate constant for the Fe(II)-DFOB complex. Our study reveals an overlooked catalytic role of flavins and siderophores that may contribute to Fe(II)/Fe(III) cycling at oxic-anoxic interfaces.

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Phosphorus retention and transformation in a dammed reservoir of the Thames River, Ontario: Impacts on phosphorus load and speciation
N. Kao, Maryati Mohamed, Ryan J. Sorichetti, Amanda Niederkorn, Philippe Van Cappellen, Chris T. Parsons
Journal of Great Lakes Research, Volume 48, Issue 1

Extensive efforts are underway to reduce phosphorus (P) export from the Lake Erie watershed. On the Canadian side, the Thames River is the largest tributary source of P to Lake Erie’s western basin. However, the role of dams in retaining and modifying riverine P loading to the lake has not been comprehensively evaluated. We assessed whether Fanshawe Reservoir, the largest dam reservoir on the Thames River, acts as a source or sink of P, using year-round discharge and water chemistry data collected in 2018 and 2019. We also determined how in-reservoir processes alter P speciation by comparing the dissolved reactive P to total P ratio (DRP:TP) in upstream and downstream loads. Annually, Fanshawe Reservoir was a net sink for P, retaining 25% (36 tonnes) and 47% (91 tonnes) of TP in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Seasonally, the reservoir oscillated between a source and sink of P. Net P release occurred during the spring of 2018 and the summers of 2018 and 2019, driven by internal P loading and hypolimnetic discharge from the dam. The reservoir did not exert a strong influence on DRP:TP annually, but ratio increases occurred during both summers, concurrent with water column stratification. Our analysis demonstrates that Fanshawe Reservoir is not only an important P sink on the Thames River, but also modulates the timing and speciation of P loads. We therefore propose that the potential of using existing dam reservoirs to attenuate downstream P loads should be more thoroughly explored alongside source based P mitigation strategies.

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Salinization as a driver of eutrophication symptoms in an urban lake (Lake Wilcox, Ontario, Canada)
Jovana Radosavljevic, Stephanie Slowinski, Mahyar Shafii, Zahra Akbarzadeh, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Chris T. Parsons, William Withers, Philippe Van Cappellen
Science of The Total Environment, Volume 846

Lake Wilcox (LW), a shallow kettle lake located in southern Ontario, has experienced multiple phases of land use change associated with human settlement and residential development in its watershed since the early 1900s. Urban growth has coincided with water quality deterioration, including the occurrence of algal blooms and depletion of dissolved oxygen (DO) in the water column. We analyzed 22 years of water chemistry, land use, and climate data (1996-2018) using principal component analysis (PCA) and multiple linear regression (MLR) to identify the contributions of climate, urbanization, and nutrient loading to the changes in water chemistry. Variations in water column stratification, phosphorus (P) speciation, and chl-a (as a proxy for algal abundance) explain 76 % of the observed temporal trends of the four main PCA components derived from water chemistry data. MLR results further imply that the intensity of stratification, quantified by the Brunt-Väisälä frequency, is a major predictor of the changes in water quality. Other important factors explaining the variations in nitrogen (N) and P speciation, and the DO concentrations, are watershed imperviousness and lake chloride concentrations that, in turn, are closely correlated. We conclude that the observed in-lake water quality trends over the past two decades are linked to urbanization via increased salinization associated with expanding impervious land cover, rather than increasing external P loading. The rising salinity promotes water column stratification, which reduces the oxygenation of the hypolimnion and enhances internal P loading to the water column. Thus, stricter controls on the application and runoff of de-icing salt should be considered as part of managing eutrophication symptoms in lakes of cold climate regions.

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Deployment of functional DNA-based biosensors for environmental water analysis
Yichen Zhao, Kayvan Yavari, Yihao Wang, Kunfu Pi, Philippe Van Cappellen, Juewen Liu
TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 153

Various functional DNA molecules have been used for the detection of environmental contaminants in water, but their practical applications have been limited. To address this gap, this review highlights the efforts to develop field-deployable water quality biosensors. The biosensor devices include microfluidic, lateral flow and paper-based devices, and other novel ideas such as the conversion of glucometers for the detection of environmental analytes. In addition, we also review DNA-functionalized hydrogels and their use in diffusive gradients in thin films (DGT) devices. We classify the sensors into one-step and two-step assays and discuss their practical implications. While the review is focused on works reported in the last five years, some classic early works are cited as well. Overall, most of the existing work only tested spiked water samples. Future work needs to shift to real environmental samples and the comparison of DNA-based sensors to standard analytical methods. • Recent development in field-deployable functional DNA based biosensors for environmental water monitoring reviewed. • Articulated the concept of one-step and two-step assays. • Microfluidic device, lateral flow device, paper, hydrogel, and glucose meter based examples reviewed.

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Pore-Scale Heterogeneities Improve the Degradation of a Self-Inhibiting Substrate: Insights from Reactive Transport Modeling
Mehdi Gharasoo, Martin Elsner, Philippe Van Cappellen, Martin Thullner
Environmental Science & Technology, Volume 56, Issue 18

In situ bioremediation is a common remediation strategy for many groundwater contaminants. It was traditionally believed that (in the absence of mixing-limitations) a better in situ bioremediation is obtained in a more homogeneous medium where the even distribution of both substrate and bacteria facilitates the access of a larger portion of the bacterial community to a higher amount of substrate. Such conclusions were driven with the typical assumption of disregarding substrate inhibitory effects on the metabolic activity of enzymes at high concentration levels. To investigate the influence of pore matrix heterogeneities on substrate inhibition, we use a numerical approach to solve reactive transport processes in the presence of pore-scale heterogeneities. To this end, a rigorous reactive pore network model is developed and used to model the reactive transport of a self-inhibiting substrate under both transient and steady-state conditions through media with various, spatially correlated, pore-size distributions. For the first time, we explore on the basis of a pore-scale model approach the link between pore-size heterogeneities and substrate inhibition. Our results show that for a self-inhibiting substrate, (1) pore-scale heterogeneities can consistently promote degradation rates at toxic levels, (2) the effect reverses when the concentrations fall to levels essential for microbial growth, and (3) an engineered combination of homogeneous and heterogeneous media can increase the overall efficiency of bioremediation.


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Ten best practices to strengthen stewardship and sharing of water science data in Canada
Bhaleka Persaud, K. A. Dukacz, Gopal Chandra Saha, A. Peterson, L. Moradi, Simon Hearn, Erin Clary, Juliane Mai, Michael Steeleworthy, Jason J. Venkiteswaran, Homa Kheyrollah Pour, Brent B. Wolfe, Sean K. Carey, John W. Pomeroy, C. M. DeBeer, J. M. Waddington, Philippe Van Cappellen, Jimmy Lin
Hydrological Processes, Volume 35, Issue 11

Water science data are a valuable asset that both underpins the original research project and bolsters new research questions, particularly in view of the increasingly complex water issues facing Canada and the world. Whilst there is general support for making data more broadly accessible, and a number of water science journals and funding agencies have adopted policies that require researchers to share data in accordance with the FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable) principles, there are still questions about effective management of data to protect their usefulness over time. Incorporating data management practices and standards at the outset of a water science research project will enable researchers to efficiently locate, analyze and use data throughout the project lifecycle, and will ensure the data maintain their value after the project has ended. Here, some common misconceptions about data management are highlighted, along with insights and practical advice to assist established and early career water science researchers as they integrate data management best practices and tools into their research. Freely available tools and training opportunities made available in Canada through Global Water Futures, the Portage Network, Gordon Foundation's DataStream, Compute Canada, and university libraries, among others are compiled. These include webinars, training videos, and individual support for the water science community that together enable researchers to protect their data assets and meet the expectations of journals and funders. The perspectives shared here have been developed as part of the Global Water Futures programme's efforts to improve data management and promote the use of common data practices and standards in the context of water science in Canada. Ten best practices are proposed that may be broadly applicable to other disciplines in the natural sciences and can be adopted and adapted globally. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

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Rescuing historical climate observations to support hydrological research
Ogundepo Odunayo, Naveela N. Sookoo, Gautam Bathla, Anthony Cavallin, Bhaleka Persaud, Kathy Szigeti, Philippe Van Cappellen, Jimmy Lin
Proceedings of the 21st ACM Symposium on Document Engineering

The acceleration of climate change and its impact highlight the need for long-term reliable climate data at high spatiotemporal resolution to answer key science questions in cold regions hydrology. Prior to the digital age, climate records were archived on paper. For example, from the 1950s to the 1990s, solar radiation data from recording stations worldwide were published in booklets by the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) Hydrometeorological Service. As a result, the data are not easily accessible by most researchers. The overarching aim of this research is to develop techniques to convert paper-based climate records into a machine-readable format to support environmental research in cold regions. This study compares the performance of a proprietary optical character recognition (OCR) service with an open-source OCR tool for digitizing hydrometeorological data. We built a digitization pipeline combining different image preprocessing techniques, semantic segmentation, and an open-source OCR engine for extracting data and metadata recorded in the scanned documents. Each page contains blocks of text with station names and tables containing the climate data. The process begins with image preprocessing to reduce noise and to improve quality before the page content is segmented to detect tables and finally run through an OCR engine for text extraction. We outline the digitization process and report on initial results, including different segmentation approaches, preprocessing image algorithms, and OCR techniques to ensure accurate extraction and organization of relevant metadata from thousands of scanned climate records. We evaluated the performance of Tesseract OCR and ABBYY FineReader on text extraction. We find that although ABBY FineReader has better accuracy on the sample data, our custom extraction pipeline using Tesseract is efficient and scalable because it is flexible and allows for more customization.

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Impact of Winter Soil Processes on Nutrient Leaching in Cold Region Agroecosystems
Konrad Krogstad, Grant J. Jensen, Mehdi Gharasoo, Laura Hug, David L. Rudolph, Philippe Van Cappellen, Fereidoun Rezanezhad

High-latitude cold regions are warming more than twice as fast as the rest of the planet, with the greatest warming occurring during the winter. Warmer winters are associated with shorter periods of snow cover, resulting in more frequent and extensive soil freezing and thawing. Freeze-thaw cycles influence soil chemical, biological, and physical properties and any changes to winter soil processes may impact carbon and nutrients export from affected soils, possibly altering soil health and nearby water quality. These impacts are relevant for agricultural soils and practices in cold regions as they are critical in governing water flows and quality within agroecosystems. In this study, a soil column experiment was conducted to assess the leaching of nutrients from fertilized agricultural soil during the non-growing season. Four soil columns were exposed to a non-growing season temperature and precipitation model and fertilizer amendments were made to two of the columns to determine the efficacy of fall-applied fertilizers and compared to other two unfertilized control columns. Leachates from the soil columns were collected and analyzed for cations and anions. The experiment results showed that a transition from a freeze period to a thaw period resulted in significant loss of chloride (Cl-), sulfate (SO42-) and nitrate (NO3-). Even with low NO3- concentrations in the applied artificial rainwater and fertilizer, high NO3- concentrations (~150 mg l-1) were observed in fertilized column leachates. Simple plug flow reactor model results indicate the high NO3- leachates are found to be due to active nitrification occurring in the upper oxidized portion of the soil columns mimicking overwinter NO3- losses via nitrification in agricultural fields. The low NO3- leachates in unfertilized columns suggest that freeze-thaw cycling had little effect on N mineralization in soil. Findings from this study will ultimately be used to bolster winter soil biogeochemical models by elucidating nutrient fluxes over changing winter conditions to refine best management practices for fertilizer application.

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Temperature, moisture and freeze–thaw controls on CO2 production in soil incubations from northern peatlands
Eunji Byun, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Linden Fairbairn, Stephanie Slowinski, Nathan Basiliko, Jonathan S. Price, William L. Quinton, Pascale Roy-Léveillée, Kara Webster, Philippe Van Cappellen
Scientific Reports, Volume 11, Issue 1

Peat accumulation in high latitude wetlands represents a natural long-term carbon sink, resulting from the cumulative excess of growing season net ecosystem production over non-growing season (NGS) net mineralization in soils. With high latitudes experiencing warming at a faster pace than the global average, especially during the NGS, a major concern is that enhanced mineralization of soil organic carbon will steadily increase CO2 emissions from northern peatlands. In this study, we conducted laboratory incubations with soils from boreal and temperate peatlands across Canada. Peat soils were pretreated for different soil moisture levels, and CO2 production rates were measured at 12 sequential temperatures, covering a range from - 10 to + 35 °C including one freeze-thaw event. On average, the CO2 production rates in the boreal peat samples increased more sharply with temperature than in the temperate peat samples. For same temperature, optimum soil moisture levels for CO2 production were higher in the peat samples from more flooded sites. However, standard reaction kinetics (e.g., Q10 temperature coefficient and Arrhenius equation) failed to account for the apparent lack of temperature dependence of CO2 production rates measured below 0 °C, and a sudden increase after a freezing event. Thus, we caution against using the simple kinetic expressions to represent the CO2 emissions from northern peatlands, especially regarding the long NGS period with multiple soil freeze and thaw events.

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Non-growing season carbon emissions in a northern peatland are projected to increase under global warming
Arash Rafat, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, William L. Quinton, Elyn Humphreys, Kara Webster, Philippe Van Cappellen
Communications Earth & Environment, Volume 2, Issue 1

Abstract Peatlands are important ecosystems that store approximately one third of terrestrial organic carbon. Non-growing season carbon fluxes significantly contribute to annual carbon budgets in peatlands, yet their response to climate change is poorly understood. Here, we investigate the governing environmental variables of non-growing season carbon emissions in a northern peatland. We develop a support-vector regression model using a continuous 13-year dataset of eddy covariance flux measurements from the Mer Blue Bog, Canada. We determine that only seven variables were needed to reproduce carbon fluxes, which were most sensitive to net radiation above the canopy, soil temperature, wind speed and soil moisture. We find that changes in soil temperature and photosynthesis drove changes in net carbon flux. Assessing net ecosystem carbon exchange under three representative concentration pathways, we project a 103% increase in peatland carbon loss by 2100 under a high emissions scenario. We suggest that peatland carbon losses constitute a strong positive climate feedback loop.

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Organic Matter Degradation in Energy-Limited Subsurface Environments—A Bioenergetics-Informed Modeling Approach
Bijendra Man Bajracharya, Christina M. Smeaton, Igor Markelov, Ekaterina Markelova, Chuanhe Lu, Olaf A. Cirpka, Philippe Van Cappellen
Geomicrobiology Journal, Volume 39, Issue 1

Microbial degradation of organic matter is a key driver of subsurface biogeochemistry. Here, we present a bioenergetics-informed kinetic model for the anaerobic degradation of macromolecular organi...

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The Cold Region Critical Zone in Transition: Responses to Climate Warming and Land Use Change
Kunfu Pi, Magdalena Bieroza, Anatoli Brouchkov, Weitao Chen, Louis J.P. Dufour, Konstantin B. Gongalsky, Anke M. Herrmann, Eveline J. Krab, Catherine Landesman, Anniet M. Laverman, Natalia Mazei, Yuri Mazei, Mats Öquist, Matthias Peichl, S. Pozdniakov, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Céline Roose‐Amsaleg, Anastasia Shatilovich, Andong Shi, Christina M. Smeaton, Lei Tong, Andrey N. Tsyganov, Philippe Van Cappellen
Annual Review of Environment and Resources, Volume 46, Issue 1

Global climate warming disproportionately affects high-latitude and mountainous terrestrial ecosystems. Warming is accompanied by permafrost thaw, shorter winters, earlier snowmelt, more intense soil freeze-thaw cycles, drier summers, and longer fire seasons. These environmental changes in turn impact surface water and groundwater flow regimes, water quality, greenhouse gas emissions, soil stability, vegetation cover, and soil (micro)biological communities. Warming also facilitates agricultural expansion, urban growth, and natural resource development, adding growing anthropogenic pressures to cold regions’ landscapes, soil health, and biodiversity. Further advances in the predictive understanding of how cold regions’ critical zone processes, functions, and ecosystem services will continue to respond to climate warming and land use changes require multiscale monitoring technologies coupled with integrated observational and modeling tools. We highlight some of the major challenges, knowledge gaps, and opportunities in cold region critical zone research, with an emphasis on subsurface processes and responses in both natural and agricultural ecosystems.

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Effects of pH and Dissolved Silicate on Phosphate Mineral-Water Partitioning with Goethite
Md Abdus Sabur, Chris T. Parsons, Taylor Maavara, Philippe Van Cappellen
ACS Earth and Space Chemistry, Volume 6, Issue 1

Release of sorbed phosphate from ferric iron oxyhydroxides can contribute to excessive algal growth in surface water bodies. Dissolved silicate has been hypothesized to facilitate phosphate desorption by competing for mineral surface sites. Here, we conducted phosphate and silicate adsorption experiments with goethite under a wide pH range (3–11), both individually (P or Si) and simultaneously (P plus Si). The entire experimental data set was successfully reproduced by the charge distribution multisite surface complexation (CD-MUSIC) model. Phosphate adsorption was highest under acidic conditions and gradually decreased from near-neutral to alkaline pH conditions. Maximum silicate adsorption, in contrast, occurred under alkaline conditions, peaking around pH 10. The competitive effect of silicate on phosphate adsorption was negligible under acidic conditions, becoming more pronounced under alkaline conditions and elevated molar Si:P ratios (>4). In a subsequent experiment, desorption of phosphate with increasing pH was monitored, in the presence or absence of dissolved silicate. While, as expected, desorption of phosphate was observed during the transition from acidic to alkaline conditions, a fraction of phosphate remained irreversibly bound to goethite. Even at high Si:P ratios and alkaline pH, dissolved silicate did not affect phosphate desorption, implying that kinetic factors prevented silicate from displacing phosphate from goethite binding sites.


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Soil heterotrophic respiration as a function of water content and temperature in a mechanistic pore-scale model
Mehdi Gharasoo, Linden Fairbairn, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Philippe Van Cappellen

&lt;p&gt;Soil heterotrophic respiration has been considered as a key source of CO&lt;sub&gt;2&lt;/sub&gt; flux into the atmosphere and thus plays an important role in global warming. Although the relationship between soil heterotrophic respiration and soil water content has been frequently studied both theoretically and experimentally, model development has thus far been empirically based. Empirical models are often limited to the specific condition of their case studies and cannot be used as a general platform for modeling. Moreover, it is difficult to extend the empirical models by theoretically defined affinities to any desired degree of accuracy. As a result, it is of high priority to develop process-based models that are able to describe the mechanisms behind this phenomenon with more deterministic terms.&lt;/p&gt;&lt;p&gt;Here we present a mechanistic, mathematically-driven model that is based on the common geometry of a pore in porous media. Assuming that the aerobic respiration of bacteria requires oxygen as an electron acceptor and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) as a substrate, the CO&lt;sub&gt;2&lt;/sub&gt; fluxes are considered a function of the bioavailable fraction of both DOC and oxygen. In this modeling approach, the availability of oxygen is controlled by its penetration into the aquatic phase through the interface between air and water. DOC on the other hand is only available to a section of the soil that is in contact with water. As the water saturation in the pore changes, it dynamically and kinematically impacts these interfaces through which the mass transfer of nutrients occurs, and therefore the CO&lt;sub&gt;2&lt;/sub&gt; fluxes are directly controlled by water content. We showcased the model applicability on several case studies and illustrated the model capability in simulating the observed microbial respiration rates versus the soil water contents. Furthermore, we showed the model potential to accept additional physically-motivated parameters in order to explain respiration rates in frozen soils or at different temperatures.&lt;/p&gt;

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Carbon release and transformation from coastal peat deposits controlled by submarine groundwater discharge: a column experiment study
Matthias Kreuzburg, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Tatjana Milojevic, Maren Voß, Lennart Gosch, Susanne Liebner, Philippe Van Cappellen, Gregor Rehder
Limnology and Oceanography, Volume 65, Issue 5

Although the majority of coastal sediments consist of sandy material, in some areas marine ingression caused the submergence of terrestrial carbon‐rich peat soils. This affects the coastal carbon balance, as peat represents a potential carbon source. We performed a column experiment to better understand the coupled flow and biogeochemical processes governing carbon transformations in submerged peat under coastal fresh groundwater (GW) discharge and brackish water intrusion. The columns contained naturally layered sediments with and without peat (organic carbon content in peat 39 ± 14 wt%), alternately supplied with oxygen‐rich brackish water from above and oxygen‐poor, low‐saline GW from below. The low‐saline GW discharge through the peat significantly increased the release and ascent of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) from the peat (δ13CDOC − 26.9‰ to − 27.7‰), which was accompanied by the production of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and emission of carbon dioxide (CO2), implying DOC mineralization. Oxygen respiration, sulfate ( SO42− ) reduction, and methane (CH4) formation were differently pronounced in the sediments and were accompanied with higher microbial abundances in peat compared to sand with SO42− ‐reducing bacteria clearly dominating methanogens. With decreasing salinity and SO42− concentrations, CH4 emission rates increased from 16.5 to 77.3 μmol m−2 d−1 during a 14‐day, low‐saline GW discharge phase. In contrast, oxygenated brackish water intrusion resulted in lower DOC and DIC pore water concentrations and significantly lower CH4 and CO2 emissions. Our study illustrates the strong dependence of carbon cycling in shallow coastal areas with submerged peat deposits on the flow and mixing dynamics within the subterranean estuary.

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Pore-scale controls on hydrological and geochemical processes in peat: Implications on interacting processes
Colin P.R. McCarter, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, William L. Quinton, Behrad Gharedaghloo, Bernd Lennartz, Jonathan S. Price, Ryan F. Connon, Philippe Van Cappellen
Earth-Science Reviews, Volume 207

Peatlands are wetlands that provide important ecosystem services including carbon sequestration and water storage that respond to hydrological, biological, and biogeochemical processes. These processes are strongly influenced by the complex pore structure of peat soils. We explore the literature on peat pore structure and the implications for hydrological, biogeochemical, and microbial processes in peat, highlighting the gaps in our current knowledge and a path to move forward. Peat is an elastic and multi-porous structured organic soil. Surficial (near-surface) peats are typically dominated by large interconnected macropores that rapidly transmit water and solutes when saturated, but these large pores drain rapidly with a reduction in pore-water pressure, and disproportionally decrease the bulk effective hydraulic conductivity, thus water fluxes that drive ecohydrological functions. The more advanced state of decomposition of older (deeper) peat, with a greater abundance of small pores, restricts the loss of moisture at similar soil water pressures and is associated with higher unsaturated hydraulic conductivities. As evaporation and precipitation occur, peat soils shrink and swell, respectively, changing the hydrological connectivity that maintain physiological processes at the peat surface. Due to the disproportionate change in pore structure and associated hydraulic properties with state of decomposition, transport processes are limited at depth, creating a zone of enhanced transport in the less decomposed peat near the surface. At the micro-scale, rapid equilibration of solutes and water occurs between the mobile and immobile pores due to diffusion, resulting in pore regions with similar chemical concentrations that are not affected by advective fluxes. These immobile regions may be the primary sites for microbial biogeochemical processes in peat. Mass transfer limitations may therefore largely regulate belowground microbial turnover and, hence, biogeochemical cycling. For peat, the development of a comprehensive theory that links the hydrological, biological, and biogeochemical processes will require a concerted interdisciplinary effort. To that end, we have highlighted four primary areas to focus our collective research: 1) understanding the combined and interrelated effects of parent material, decomposition, and nutrient status on peat pore connectivity, macropore development and collapse, and solute transport, 2) determining the influence of changing pore structure due to freeze-thaw or dewatering on the hydrology and biogeochemistry, 3) better elucidating the non-equilibrium transport processes in peat, and 4) exploring the implications of peat’s pore structure on microbiological and biogeochemical processes.

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A DNA-based biosensor for aqueous Hg(II): Performance under variable pH, temperature and competing ligand composition
Kunfu Pi, Juewen Liu, Philippe Van Cappellen
Journal of Hazardous Materials, Volume 385

Abstract Mercury (Hg) is a toxic metal posing major health risks to human beings and wildlife. The characterization of Hg fate and transport in aquatic environments is hindered by a lack of sensitive, selective and easily field-deployable analytical techniques. Here we assess the reliability and performance of a Hg2+ sensor based on the selective binding of Hg2+ to a thymine-rich DNA under environmentally-relevant conditions. Experimental results indicate that the interactions between the DNA and SYBR Green I, which produce the detection fluorescence signal, are significantly impacted by pH, metal ligands and natural dissolved organic matter (NDOM). These interferences are largely eliminated by immobilizing the DNA in a polyacrylamide hydrogel, although high concentrations of NDOM, such as fulvic acids, still affect the sensor’s performance due to competitive binding of Hg2+. The binding of Hg2+ to NDOM, however, can be accounted for via equilibrium speciation calculations, which also yield the complexation constant for Hg2+ binding to the DNA in the hydrogel. The equilibrium calculations reproduce the results for the entire set of experimental conditions, from simple electrolyte solutions to complex aqueous compositions mimicking natural lake waters, and across large ranges of pH (3-10) and temperature (5-50 °C).

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An analysis of the sample size requirements for acceptable statistical power in water quality monitoring for improvement detection
Christopher Wellen, Philippe Van Cappellen, Larissa Gospodyn, Joseph P. Thomas, Mohamed N. Mohamed
Ecological Indicators, Volume 118

• Few guidelines on sample size requirements for water quality improvement in streams. • Sample sizes for acceptable statistical power were estimated for common indicators. • 20% reductions of pollutant indicators required decades to centuries of data. • 40% reductions of pollutant indicators varied significantly by site. • 80% reductions required 5 years or less of data. Many water quality managers seek to demonstrate reductions in pollutants after a remedial program or policy change of some sort is implemented, but there is little information in the literature to help guide the extent of water quality sampling that is required to be confident that a change has occurred. Statistical power refers to the likelihood of avoiding a Type II error in hypothesis testing. It is critical to examine statistical power levels to ensure results are not unduly influenced by insufficient quantity of data. This study presents the first published record, to the best of our knowledge, on sample size requirements to achieve acceptable levels of statistical power in hypothesis testing of annual water quality (nutrients) in streams. We examined 13 temperate agricultural watersheds spanning a gradient of size from 11 to 16,000 km 2 using data synthesized from long-term flow and water quality records. We found that achieving commonly accepted levels of statistical power (0.8) after reductions of 20% in load or flow-weighted mean concentration (FWMC) required an inordinate quantity of data (50–250 years for load, 10–120 years for FWMC), while achieving statistical power of 0.8 after reductions of 80% of load or FWMC required very little data (2–4 years for FWMC, 2–7 years for load). Load reductions of 40% required a range of 8–50 years of data depending on analyte, while FWMC reductions of 40% required 3–10 years of total phosphorus (TP) data, 5–25 years for soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP), and 2–6 years for nitrate (NO 3 ). We examined relationships among times to achieve statistical power and a number of common landscape descriptors (discharge, baseflow index, basin size, concentration-discharge slope) and found no discernable relationships for either TP or SRP, whereas catchments with higher baseflow indices were found to have lower data requirements for achieving statistical power of 0.8 for NO 3 . We also show through subsampling experiments that higher frequency sampling tended to reduce data requirements to achieve acceptable statistical power, though these gains diminish as the sample frequency increases. The information presented will help those tasked with watershed monitoring to design appropriate sampling regimes to ensure adequate data are obtained to detect change.

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Global Dam‐Driven Changes to Riverine N:P:Si Ratios Delivered to the Coastal Ocean
Taylor Maavara, Zahra Akbarzadeh, Philippe Van Cappellen
Geophysical Research Letters, Volume 47, Issue 15

River damming alters nutrient fluxes along the land‐ocean aquatic continuum as a result of biogeochemical processes in reservoirs. Both the changes in riverine nutrient fluxes and nutrient ratios impact ecosystem functioning of receiving water bodies. We utilize spatially distributed mechanistic models of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and silicon (Si) cycling in reservoirs to quantify changes in nutrient stoichiometry of river discharge to coastal waters. The results demonstrate that the growing number of dams decouples the riverine fluxes of N, P, and Si. Worldwide, preferential removal of P over N in reservoirs increases N:P ratios delivered to the ocean, raising the potential for P limitation of coastal productivity. By midcentury, more than half of the rivers discharging to the coastal zone will experience a higher removal of reactive Si relative to reactive P and total N, in response to the rapid pace at which new hydroelectric dams are being built.

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Changes in Sedimentary Phosphorus Burial Following Artificial Eutrophication of Lake 227, Experimental Lakes Area, Ontario, Canada
David O’Connell, Nienke Ansems, Ravi Kukkadapu, Deb P. Jaisi, Diane M. Orihel, Barbara J. Cade‐Menun, Yongfeng Hu, Johan A. Wiklund, Roland I. Hall, Hannah Chessell, Thilo Behrends, Philippe Van Cappellen
Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, Volume 125, Issue 8

Lake 227 of the Experimental Lakes Area (ELA) in Ontario, Canada, has been fertilized with phosphorus (P) since 1969, which resulted in a rapid transition from oligotrophic to eutrophic conditions. Sediment cores collected from the oxygenated epilimnion, and the mostly anoxic hypolimnion of this unique lake contain a historical record of the changes in sediment P speciation and burial rates across the trophic transition. To elucidate these changes, results of chemical extractions were combined with 210Pb sediment dating, and with 31P NMR, Mossbauer, and XANES spectroscopies. Prior to 1969, organic P (POrg) was the major sedimentary P sink in Lake 227. Eutrophication of the lake coincided with marked increases in the burial rate of total P (TP), as well as in the relative contribution of the NaHCO3-extractable P pool (humic-bound P, PHum). Together, PHum and POrg account for ≥70% of total P burial in the sediments deposited since artificial fertilization started. The PHum fraction likely comprises phosphate complexes with humic substances. The strong linear correlation between P and iron (Fe) extracted by NaHCO3 implies a close association of the two elements in the humic fraction. Mossbauer and XANES spectra further indicate that most Fe in the post-1969 sediments remained in the Fe (III) oxidation state, which is attributed to the stabilization of reducible Fe by organic matter, in part via the formation of phosphate-Fe (III)-humic complexes. Importantly, our results show that the eutrophication experimentation of Lake 227 caused the accumulation of a large reservoir of reactive sediment P, which may continue to fuel internal P loading to the water column once artificial fertilization is terminated.

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Unique surface density layers promote formation of harmful algal blooms in the Pengxi River, Three Gorges Reservoir
Lei Zhang, Ziqiang Xia, Chuan Zhou, Li Fu, Jianjun Yu, William D. Taylor, Paul B. Hamilton, Philippe Van Cappellen, Daobin Ji, Defu Liu, Deti Xie, Bo Zeng, Anne M. McLeod, G. Douglas Haffner
Freshwater Science, Volume 39, Issue 4

The Three Gorges Reservoir (TGR), China, is the largest man-made reservoir in the world. Harmful algal blooms (HABs) have become common since the reservoir’s impoundment in 2003. To investigate the mechanisms of HAB formation in the reservoir and to determine possible mitigation measures, we conducted surveys over a range of spatial scales and temporal resolutions over a 2-y period (March 2013–December 2014). The large-scale survey (the portion of the reservoir on the main stem of the Yangtze River and 22 tributaries) revealed that cyanobacteria blooms were restricted to the upper reaches of the tributaries. The medium-scale survey (1 tributary: Pengxi River) showed that cyanobacteria blooms were confined to the early-spring period with the initiation of thermal stratification in the deep-water column. The small-scale survey (a local, backwater lake in the Pengxi River), which was of higher-temporal resolution than the other 2 surveys, demonstrated that the bloom occurred at the same time as the formation of a surface-density layer unique to the geomorphology and water-control management of the reservoir. The vertical distributions of the bloom and surface-density layer appeared to be related, although the density layer persisted beyond the duration of the HABs. We hypothesized that limited nutrient diffusion into these density layers could result in nutrient limitation despite the hyper-eutrophic conditions that generally characterize the TGR basin. In the main stem of the Yangtze River and lower reaches of the tributaries in the TGR, algal blooms were not observed because of continuous, deep mixing throughout the year. We conclude that the hydrological stability and geomorphological characteristics of the TGR play critical roles in regulating the temporal and spatial patterns of algal blooms and that artificial mixing of the water column is currently the best option to limit HAB formation, especially in upper tributaries.


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Effects of Damming on River Nitrogen Fluxes: A Global Analysis
Zahra Akbarzadeh, Taylor Maavara, Stephanie Slowinski, Philippe Van Cappellen
Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Volume 33, Issue 11

This code, developed in MATLAB R2018a, is a process based mass balance modelfor simulating the biogeochemical cycling of nitrogen in dam reservoirs.

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Comparative valuation of potential and realized ecosystem services in Southern Ontario, Canada
Tariq Aziz, Philippe Van Cappellen
Environmental Science & Policy, Volume 100

• Potential and realized values of a bundle of six ecosystem services are estimated for Southern Ontario, Canada. • The realized value of the ecosystem services averages 51% of the potential value. • Within the Greenbelt, a protected area surrounding the Toronto conurbation, 61% of the potential eco-services are realized. • The spatial distribution of realized ecosystem services helps inform environmental policy-making. The full production of a given ecosystem service is called the potential ecosystem service; the fraction of the potential ecosystem service that is actually used by society is referred to as the realized ecosystem service. Because they are directly contributing to human well-being, the realized ecosystem services are of particular socio-economic importance. A key challenge faced by the economic valuation of ecosystem services is how to differentiate between realized and potential ecosystem services. Here, we address this challenge for Southern Ontario, which is the most densely populated region of Canada. We apply the Co$ting Nature model to generate the combined spatial distribution and use intensity of a bundle of six ecosystem services: water provisioning and supply, water quality, carbon sequestration, carbon storage, flood regulation, and nature-based tourism. The relative distribution of the potential ecosystem services is then combined with region-specific unit values for the land covers supplying the ecosystem services. The unit values are expressed in 2017 Canadian dollars per hectare and per year. Our analysis yields a total potential value of the bundled ecosystem services of $19 billion per year for Southern Ontario. To estimate the value of the realized ecosystem services, the potential values are scaled by the corresponding relative use indices. The resulting value of the realized ecosystem services is $9.7 billion per year, that is, about 50% of the value of the potential ecosystem services. The importance of accounting for the use intensity of ecosystem services is illustrated for the Greenbelt, a protected area of about 7600 km 2 surrounding the Greater Toronto-Hamilton conurbation, which is home to more than nine million people. Within the Greenbelt, 61% of the value of potential ecosystem services is realized, significantly higher than the regional average. Of particular importance is flood regulation by the Greenbelt, given the growing threat of urban flooding in the Toronto area.

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On the Role of a Large Shallow Lake (Lake St. Clair, USA‐Canada) in Modulating Phosphorus Loads to Lake Erie
Serghei A. Bocaniov, Philippe Van Cappellen, Donald Scavia
Water Resources Research, Volume 55, Issue 12

It is often assumed that large shallow water bodies are net sediment nondepositional annually and that if they have nutrient loads from multiple sources, those loads are quickly homogenized before exiting the water bodies. Where this is not the case, it impacts understanding and predicting consequences of nutrient load reductions, both for the water body and for those downstream of it. We applied a three‐dimensional ecological model to a large shallow lake, Lake St. Clair (US/Canada), to quantify the total and dissolved reactive phosphorus (TP and DRP) transport and retention, and construct tributary‐specific relationships between phosphorus load to the lake and the amount of phosphorus that leaves the lake for the three major tributaries. Lake St. Clair is situated between the St. Clair and Detroit rivers, the latter enters Lake Erie. Efforts to reduce Lake Erie's re‐eutrophication requires an understanding of nutrient transport and retention in each of its subwatersheds including those that feed indirectly via Lake St. Clair. We found that over the simulation period, the lake retained a significant portion of TP (17%) and DRP (35%) load and that TP and DRP retention was spatially variable and largely controlled by a combination of lake depth, resuspension, and plankton uptake. Compared to the Clinton and Sydenham rivers, the Thames River contributed a larger proportion of its load to the lake's outflow. However, because the lake's load is dominated by the St. Clair River, 40% reductions of nutrients from those subwatersheds will result in less than a 5% reduction in the load to Lake Erie.

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Bioretention cells under cold climate conditions: Effects of freezing and thawing on water infiltration, soil structure, and nutrient removal
Brenden Ding, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, Behrad Gharedaghloo, Philippe Van Cappellen, Elodie Passeport
Science of The Total Environment, Volume 649

Bioretention cells are a popular control strategy for stormwater volume and quality, but their efficiency for water infiltration and nutrient removal under cold climate conditions has been poorly studied. In this work, soil cores were collected from an active bioretention cell containing engineered soil material amended with a phosphate sorbent medium. The cores were used in laboratory column experiments conducted to obtain a detailed characterization of the soil's bioretention performance during six consecutive freeze-thaw cycles (FTCs, from -10 to +10 °C). At the start of each FTC, the experimental column undergoing the FTCs and a control column kept at room temperature were supplied with a solution containing 25 mg/L of bromide, nitrate and phosphate. Water saturated conditions were established to mimic the presence of an internal water storage zone to support anaerobic nitrate removal. At the end of each FTC, the pore solution was allowed to drain from the columns. The results indicate that the FTCs enhanced the infiltration efficiency of the soil: with each successive cycle the drainage rate increased in the experimental column. Freezing and thawing also increased the saturated hydraulic conductivity of the bioretention soil. X-ray tomography imaging identified a key role of macro-pore formation in maintaining high infiltration rates. Both aqueous nitrate and phosphate supplied to the columns were nearly completely removed from solution. Sufficiently long retention times and the presence of the internal water storage zone promoted anaerobic nitrate elimination despite the low temperatures. Dissolved phosphate was efficiently trapped at all depths in the soil columns, with ≤2% of the added stormwater phosphate recovered in the drainage effluent. These findings imply that, when designed properly, bioretention cells can support high infiltration rates and mitigate nutrient pollution in cold climates.

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Coupling Water Column and Sediment Biogeochemical Dynamics: Modeling Internal Phosphorus Loading, Climate Change Responses, and Mitigation Measures in Lake Vansjø, Norway
Igor Markelov, Raoul-Marie Couture, Rachele Fischer, Sigrid Haande, Philippe Van Cappellen
Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, Volume 124, Issue 12

We expanded the existing one‐dimensional MyLake model by incorporating a vertically resolved sediment diagenesis module and developing a reaction network that seamlessly couples the water column and sediment biogeochemistry. The application of the MyLake‐Sediment model to boreal Lake Vansjø illustrates the model's ability to reproduce daily water quality variables and predict sediment‐water column exchange fluxes over a long historical period. In prognostic scenarios, we assessed the importance of sediment processes and the effects of various climatic and anthropogenic drivers on the lake's biogeochemistry and phytoplankton dynamics. First, MyLake‐Sediment was used to simulate the potential impacts of increasing air temperature on algal growth and water quality. Second, the key role of ice cover in controlling water column mixing and biogeochemical cycles was analyzed in a series of scenarios that included a fully ice‐free end‐member. Third, in another end‐member scenario P loading from the watershed to the lake was abruptly halted. The model results suggest that remobilization of legacy P stored in the bottom sediments could sustain the lake's primary productivity on a time scale of several centuries. Finally, while the majority of management practices to reduce excessive algal growth in lakes focus on reducing external P loads, other efforts rely on the addition of reactive materials that sequester P in the sediment. Therefore, we investigated the effectiveness of ferric iron additions in decreasing the dissolved phosphate efflux from the sediment and, consequently, limit phytoplankton growth in Lake Vansjø.

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Understanding and managing the re-eutrophication of Lake Erie: Knowledge gaps and research priorities
Mohamed N. Mohamed, Christopher Wellen, Chris T. Parsons, William D. Taylor, George B. Arhonditsis, Krista M. Chomicki, Duncan Boyd, Paul Weidman, Scott O. C. Mundle, Philippe Van Cappellen, Andrew N. Sharpley, Douglas Haffner
Freshwater Science, Volume 38, Issue 4

AbstractEutrophication of freshwaters is already a problem in many regions globally and will probably worsen as human populations grow and consume more resources. The ability of researchers and gov...

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Can Improved Flow Partitioning in Hydrologic Models Increase Biogeochemical Predictability?
Mahyar Shafii, James R. Craig, Merrin L. Macrae, Michael English, Sherry L. Schiff, Philippe Van Cappellen, Nandita B. Basu
Water Resources Research, Volume 55, Issue 4

Hydrologic models partition flows into surface and subsurface pathways, but their calibration is typically conducted only against streamflow. Here we argue that unless model outcomes are constrained using flow pathway data, multiple partitioning schemes can lead to the same streamflow. This point becomes critical for biogeochemical modeling as individual flow paths may yield unique chemical signatures. We show how information on flow pathways can be used to constrain hydrologic flow partitioning and how improved partitioning can lead to better water quality predictions. As a case study, an agricultural basin in Ontario is used to demonstrate that using tile discharge data could increase the performance of both the hydrology and the nitrogen transport models. Watershed‐scale tile discharge was estimated based on sparse tile data collected at some tiles using a novel regression‐based approach. Through a series of calibration experiments, we show that utilizing tile flow signatures as calibration criteria improves model performance in the prediction of nitrate loads in both the calibration and validation periods. Predictability of nitrate loads is improved even with no tile flow data and by model calibration only against an approximate understanding of annual tile flow percent. However, despite high values of goodness‐of‐fit metrics in this case, temporal dynamics of predictions are inconsistent with reality. For instance, the model predicts significant tile discharge in summer with no tile flow occurrence in the field. Hence, the proposed tile flow upscaling approach and the partitioning‐constrained model calibration are vital steps toward improving the predictability of biogeochemical models in tiled landscapes.

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Response to Comment on “Legacy nitrogen may prevent achievement of water quality goals in the Gulf of Mexico”
K. J. Van Meter, Philippe Van Cappellen, Nandita B. Basu
Science, Volume 365, Issue 6455

Ballard et al . argue that our prediction of a 30-year or longer recovery time for Gulf of Mexico water quality is highly uncertain, and that much shorter time lags are equally likely. We demonstrate that their argument, based on the use of a two-component regression model, does not sufficiently consider fundamental watershed processes or multiple lines of evidence suggesting the existence of decadal-scale lags.


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The role of groundwater discharge fluxes on Si:P ratios in a major tributary to Lake Erie
Taylor Maavara, Stephanie Slowinski, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, K. J. Van Meter, Philippe Van Cappellen
Science of The Total Environment, Volume 622-623

Groundwater discharge can be a major source of nutrients to river systems. Although quantification of groundwater nitrate loading to streams is common, the dependence of surface water silicon (Si) and phosphorus (P) concentrations on groundwater sources has rarely been determined. Additionally, the ability of groundwater discharge to drive surface water Si:P ratios has not been contextualized relative to riverine inputs or in-stream transformations. In this study, we quantify the seasonal dynamics of Si and P cycles in the Grand River (GR) watershed, the largest Canadian watershed draining into Lake Erie, to test our hypothesis that regions of Si-rich groundwater discharge increase surface water Si:P ratios. Historically, both the GR and Lake Erie have been considered stoichiometrically P-limited, where the molar Si:P ratio is greater than the ~16:1 phytoplankton uptake ratio. However, recent trends suggest that eastern Lake Erie may be approaching Si-limitation. We sampled groundwater and surface water for dissolved and reactive particulate Si as well as total dissolved P for 12months within and downstream of a 50-km reach of high groundwater discharge. Our results indicate that groundwater Si:P ratios are lower than the corresponding surface water and that groundwater is a significant source of bioavailable P to surface water. Despite these observations, the watershed remains P-limited for the majority of the year, with localized periods of Si-limitation. We further find that groundwater Si:P ratios are a relatively minor driver of surface water Si:P, but that the magnitude of Si and P loads from groundwater represent a large proportion of the overall fluxes to Lake Erie.

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The spatial and temporal distribution of metals in an urban stream: A case study of the Don River in Toronto, Canada
Sannan Zahid Mansoor, Sana Louie, Ana T. Lima, Philippe Van Cappellen, Bruce MacVicar
Journal of Great Lakes Research, Volume 44, Issue 6

Abstract Widespread growth of cities, the association of trace metals with urban runoff, and the potentially deleterious effect of metals on aquatic ecology have made it important to understand the distribution and transport of metals through surface water channel networks. The Don River in Toronto, Canada has been identified as an Area of Concern for pollution to Lake Ontario, with historically high levels of metal contamination. Sampling programs are sparse, therefore a model is needed to understand the spatial and temporal variability of metals in the river network. The objectives of the current study are to: i) describe the sampled spatial and temporal variability of metals in the Don River and ii) develop a modelling strategy to describe within flood metal transport dynamics. A model setup tool is developed that links Storm Water Management Model (SWMM) with the Environmental Fluid Dynamics Code (EFDC) to allow a seamless transition from catchment hydrology to in-stream hydraulic and chemical processes. Results show that lead pollution in the Don River is decreasing, likely as a result of policy changes and sediment dredging in the mouth of the river. However, zinc and copper pollution are increasingly problematic, with copper exceeding recommended lower guidelines, particularly during floods. Model results confirm that most of the sediment and metals are transported in relatively short bursts within longer flood durations and are stored in depositional hotspots within the Lower Don River. A better monitoring strategy is needed to understand and more accurately parametrize these processes in an urban river system.

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Phosphorus and nitrogen trajectories in the Mediterranean Sea (1950–2030): Diagnosing basin-wide anthropogenic nutrient enrichment
Helen R. Powley, Michael D. Krom, Philippe Van Cappellen
Progress in Oceanography, Volume 162

Abstract Human activities have significantly modified the inputs of land-derived phosphorus (P) and nitrogen (N) to the Mediterranean Sea (MS). Here, we reconstruct the external inputs of reactive P and N to the Western Mediterranean Sea (WMS) and Eastern Mediterranean Sea (EMS) over the period 1950–2030. We estimate that during this period the land derived P and N loads increased by factors of 3 and 2 to the WMS and EMS, respectively, with reactive P inputs peaking in the 1980s but reactive N inputs increasing continuously from 1950 to 2030. The temporal variations in reactive P and N inputs are imposed in a coupled P and N mass balance model of the MS to simulate the accompanying changes in water column nutrient distributions and primary production with time. The key question we address is whether these changes are large enough to be distinguishable from variations caused by confounding factors, specifically the relatively large inter-annual variability in thermohaline circulation (THC) of the MS. Our analysis indicates that for the intermediate and deep water masses of the MS the magnitudes of changes in reactive P concentrations due to changes in anthropogenic inputs are relatively small and likely difficult to diagnose because of the noise created by the natural circulation variability. Anthropogenic N enrichment should be more readily detectable in time series concentration data for dissolved organic N (DON) after the 1970s, and for nitrate (NO3) after the 1990s. The DON concentrations in the EMS are predicted to exhibit the largest anthropogenic enrichment signature. Temporal variations in annual primary production over the 1950–2030 period are dominated by variations in deep-water formation rates, followed by changes in riverine P inputs for the WMS and atmospheric P deposition for the EMS. Overall, our analysis indicates that the detection of basin-wide anthropogenic nutrient concentration trends in the MS is rendered difficult due to: (1) the Atlantic Ocean contributing the largest reactive P and N inputs to the MS, hence diluting the anthropogenic nutrient signatures, (2) the anti-estuarine circulation removing at least 45% of the anthropogenic nutrients inputs added to both basins of the MS between 1950 and 2030, and (3) variations in intermediate and deep water formation rates that add high natural noise to the P and N concentration trajectories.

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Legacy nitrogen may prevent achievement of water quality goals in the Gulf of Mexico
K. J. Van Meter, Philippe Van Cappellen, Nandita B. Basu
Science, Volume 360, Issue 6387

Haunted by the past Reducing the extent of hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico will not be as easy as reducing agricultural nitrogen use. Van Meter et al. report that so much nitrogen from runoff has accumulated in the Mississippi River basin that, even if future agricultural nitrogen inputs are eliminated, it will still take 30 years to realize the 60% decrease in load needed to reduce eutrophication in the Gulf. This legacy effect means that a dramatic shift in land-use practices, which may not be compatible with current levels of agricultural production, will be needed to control hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. Science , this issue p. 427

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Environmental Indicator Principium with Case References to Agricultural Soil, Water, and Air Quality and Model-Derived Indicators
T. Q. Zhang, Zhiming Zheng, Rattan Lal, Ziyan Lin, Andrew N. Sharpley, Amy L. Shober, Douglas R. Smith, C. S. Tan, Philippe Van Cappellen
Journal of Environmental Quality, Volume 47, Issue 2

Environmental indicators are powerful tools for tracking environmental changes, measuring environmental performance, and informing policymakers. Many diverse environmental indicators, including agricultural environmental indicators, are currently in use or being developed. This special collection of technical papers expands on the peer-reviewed literature on environmental indicators and their application to important current issues in the following areas: (i) model-derived indicators to indicate phosphorus losses from arable land to surface runoff and subsurface drainage, (ii) glutathione-ascorbate cycle-related antioxidants as early-warning bioindicators of polybrominated diphenyl ether toxicity in mangroves, and (iii) assessing the effectiveness of using organic matrix biobeds to limit herbicide dissipation from agricultural fields, thereby controlling on-farm point-source pollution. This introductory review also provides an overview of environmental indicators, mainly for agriculture, with examples related to the quality of the agricultural soil-water-air continuum and the application of model-derived indicators. Current knowledge gaps and future lines of investigation are also discussed. It appears that environmental indicators, particularly those for agriculture, work efficiently at the field, catchment, and local scales and serve as valuable metrics of system functioning and response; however, these indicators need to be refined or further developed to comprehensively meet community expectations in terms of providing a consistent picture of relevant issues and/or allowing comparisons to be made nationally or internationally.


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Sediment phosphorus speciation and mobility under dynamic redox conditions
Chris T. Parsons, Fereidoun Rezanezhad, David O’Connell, Philippe Van Cappellen
Biogeosciences, Volume 14, Issue 14

Abstract. Anthropogenic nutrient enrichment has caused phosphorus (P) accumulation in many freshwater sediments, raising concerns that internal loading from legacy P may delay the recovery of aquatic ecosystems suffering from eutrophication. Benthic recycling of P strongly depends on the redox regime within surficial sediment. In many shallow environments, redox conditions tend to be highly dynamic as a result of, among others, bioturbation by macrofauna, root activity, sediment resuspension and seasonal variations in bottom-water oxygen (O2) concentrations. To gain insight into the mobility and biogeochemistry of P under fluctuating redox conditions, a suspension of sediment from a hypereutrophic freshwater marsh was exposed to alternating 7-day periods of purging with air and nitrogen gas (N2), for a total duration of 74 days, in a bioreactor system. We present comprehensive data time series of bulk aqueous- and solid-phase chemistry, solid-phase phosphorus speciation and hydrolytic enzyme activities demonstrating the mass balanced redistribution of P in sediment during redox cycling. Aqueous phosphate concentrations remained low ( ∼ 2.5 µM) under oxic conditions due to sorption to iron(III) oxyhydroxides. During anoxic periods, once nitrate was depleted, the reductive dissolution of iron(III) oxyhydroxides released P. However, only 4.5 % of the released P accumulated in solution while the rest was redistributed between the MgCl2 and NaHCO3 extractable fractions of the solid phase. Thus, under the short redox fluctuations imposed in the experiments, P remobilization to the aqueous phase remained relatively limited. Orthophosphate predominated at all times during the experiment in both the solid and aqueous phase. Combined P monoesters and diesters accounted for between 9 and 16 % of sediment particulate P. Phosphatase activities up to 2.4 mmol h−1 kg−1 indicated the potential for rapid mineralization of organic P (Po), in particular during periods of aeration when the activity of phosphomonoesterases was 37 % higher than under N2 sparging. The results emphasize that the magnitude and timing of internal P loading during periods of anoxia are dependent on both P redistribution within sediments and bottom-water nitrate concentrations.

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A diagnostic approach to constraining flow partitioning in hydrologic models using a multiobjective optimization framework
Mahyar Shafii, Nandita B. Basu, James R. Craig, Sherry L. Schiff, Philippe Van Cappellen
Water Resources Research, Volume 53, Issue 4

© American Geophysical Union: Shafii, M., Basu, N., Craig, J. R., Schiff, S. L., & Van Cappellen, P. (2017). A diagnostic approach to constraining flow partitioning in hydrologic models using a multiobjective optimization framework. Water Resources Research, 53(4), 3279–3301.