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Past, Present, and Future Nutrient Quality of a Small Southeastern River: A Pre-Dam Assessment
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Troy University, Troy, AL 36082, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 April 2013; in revised form: 14 June 2013 / Accepted: 27 June 2013 / Published: 8 July 2013
Abstract: Riverine dams alter both the physical environment and water chemistry, thus affecting species assemblages within these environments. In the United States, dam construction is on the decline and there is a growing trend for dam removal. The Choctawhatchee, Pea, and Yellow Rivers Watershed Management Authority had initiated the permitting process for placing a reservoir dam on the Little Choctawhatchee River (LCR), a tributary to the Choctawhatchee River. The purpose of the proposed reservoir was water supply, and while the permit application has been suspended, history shows that this or related projects are likely to arise in the future. This study collected data on nutrient quality seasonally (four times) from 12 sites in the LCR watershed from October 2007 to June 2008 in order to determine pre-dam conditions and to compare these data to historical and regional information. Historical and current nutrient concentrations were elevated throughout the watershed, in most cases above suggested criteria, and indicated that water quality of the river was and continues to be nutrient rich. A future reservoir at recent levels of water quality will likely be highly eutrophic, and anthropogenic influences will further stress this ecosystem and its water quality as the urban region expands.
Keywords: Choctawhatchee; Little Choctawhatchee River; water quality; reservoir; dam; nutrients; wastewater; phosphorus; nitrogen
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Cite This Article
MDPI and ACS Style
Miller, J.M.; Stewart, P.M. Past, Present, and Future Nutrient Quality of a Small Southeastern River: A Pre-Dam Assessment. Water 2013, 5, 988-1005.
Miller JM, Stewart PM. Past, Present, and Future Nutrient Quality of a Small Southeastern River: A Pre-Dam Assessment. Water. 2013; 5(3):988-1005.
Miller, Jonathan M.; Stewart, Paul M. 2013. "Past, Present, and Future Nutrient Quality of a Small Southeastern River: A Pre-Dam Assessment." Water 5, no. 3: 988-1005.