Eutrophication in the River Meuse

Descy, J.-P. (1992) Eutrophication in the River Meuse. In: Sutcliffe, D.W. and Jones, J.G. (eds.) Eutrophication: research and application to water supply. Ambleside, UK, Freshwater Biological Association, pp. 132-142. (FBA Special Publications,3)

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The severe problems caused by large phytoplankton populations in the River Meuse date back to the beginning of the 1980s. However, no clear relationship can be established between an increase of algal growth and dissolved nutrient concentrations, at least in the Belgian part of the river. Most probably, plankton algae start developing in France, utilizing large inputs of phosphorus from some of the tributaries: this point will be investigated further, as well as the effect of a reduction in the releases of phosphorus. A mathematical model helps to understand the main factors which control algal growth: underwater light, temperature, discharge and grazing by zooplankton. The last is a major loss process in summer and, as shown by recent observations, may trigger a seasonal succession leading to dominance by large phytoplankton taxa. With regard to water quality, eutrophication is a major problem in drinking-water treatment (filter clogging, etc.) and large numbers of decomposing algae may adversely affect the oxygen budget of the river. On the other hand, algal photosynthesis is the most important oxygen source at periods of low discharge, and reduced algal production may result in dramatic oxygen decreases in heavily polluted stretches of the river.

Item Type: Book Section
Title: Eutrophication in the River Meuse
Personal Creator/Author:
Descy, J.-P.
Title of Book: Eutrophication: research and application to water supply
Sutcliffe, D.W.
Jones, J.G.
Refereed: No
Series Name: FBA Special Publications
Number: 3
Page Range: pp. 132-142
Date: 1992
Publisher: Freshwater Biological Association
Place of Publication: Ambleside, UK
ISBN: 978-0900386-52-7
Issuing Agency: Freshwater Biological Association
Uncontrolled Keywords: River water; Rivers; Eutrophication; Models; Growth; Algal blooms; Biomass; Dissolved oxygen; Europe; Meuse River
Subjects: Ecology
Item ID: 5294
Depositing User: Hardy B Schwamm
Date Deposited: 10 May 2011 13:28
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2011 15:08
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