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Title

Export of nitrogen from catchments: A worldwide analysis

AuthorsÁlvarez Cobelas, Miguel CSIC ORCID ; Angeler, D. G.; Sánchez Carrillo, Salvador CSIC ORCID
KeywordsLand use
Environmental factors
Regional approaches
In-stream processes
Issue Date18-Apr-2008
PublisherElsevier
CitationEnvironmental Pollution 156(2): 261-269 (2008)
AbstractThis study reviews nitrogen export rates from 946 rivers of the world to determine the influence of quantitative (runoff, rainfall, inhabitant density, catchment area, percentage of land use cover, airborne deposition, fertilizer input) and qualitative (dominant type of forest, occurrence of stagnant waterbodies, dominant land use, occurrence of point sources, runoff type) environmental factors on nitrogen fluxes. All fractions (total, nitrate, ammonia, dissolved organic and particulate organic) of nitrogen export showed a left-skewed distribution, which suggests a relatively pristine condition for most systems. Total nitrogen export showed the highest variability whereas total organic nitrogen export comprised the dominant fraction of export. Nitrogen export rates were only weakly explained by our qualitative and quantitative environmental variables. Our study suggests that the consideration of spatial and temporal scales is important for predicting nitrogen export rates using simple and easy-to-get environmental variables. Regionally based modelling approaches prove more useful than global-scale analyses.
Spatial and temporal scales are important determinants for nitrogen export from catchments and emphasis should be put on regional approaches.
Description9 pages, 4 figures.-- PMID: 18374463 [PubMed].-- Printed version published on Nov. 2008.-- Supplementary data available: Tables: Data sources of nitrogen export by world catchments and catchment characterization.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2008.02.016
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/8120
DOI10.1016/j.envpol.2008.02.016
ISSN0269-7491
Appears in Collections:(IRN) Artículos

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