Abstract: Located in the west coast of Taiwan, Yunlin County is considered as one of the most industrialized counties. The impact of land use on the coastal zone is significantly high. The main objective of this study is to analyze the impact of coastal land use changes in Yunlin County between 1996 and 2011 on shoreline dynamics. Two sets of satellite images (SPOT and FORMOSAT-2) are used as major data sources, and all analyses are performed using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) techniques. Land use classification includes seven types. Their area changes and correlations with shoreline area changes are calculated. Results indicate that between 1996 and 2011, the Yunlin coastal zone has experienced substantial land use changes, with dramatic increase of industrial and residential area along with significant loss of sandy coast. For the last sixteen years, Yunlin shoreline has undergone both erosion and accretion position changes. However, accretion is more prominent and common in many places. The net shoreline change observed is an accretion area of 1.65 km2. Results also further reveal that area changes of agriculture, residential, abandoned and aquaculture lands have caused a negative impact on the shoreline, moving it landward. However, area changes of industrial land and the sandy coast have exerted a positive impact (shifting the shoreline towards the sea). This positive impact is mainly due to land reclamation projects and destruction of natural coasts. As such, this is not favorable for natural coastal environments. This study also clearly indicates that, human induced coastal land use changes do exist in Yunlin. These changes may have created long-term shoreline position shifts and significant impact on its coastal environment.
Abstract: This study proposes a framework for estimating pollutant flux in an estuary. An efficient method is applied to estimate the flux of pollutants in an estuary. A gauging station network in the Danshui River estuary is established to measure the data of water quality and discharge based on the efficient method. A boat mounted with an acoustic Doppler profiler (ADP) traverses the river along a preselected path that is normal to the streamflow to measure the velocities, water depths and water quality for calculating pollutant flux. To know the characteristics of the estuary and to provide the basis for the pollutant flux estimation model, data of complete tidal cycles is collected. The discharge estimation model applies the maximum velocity and water level to estimate mean velocity and cross-sectional area, respectively. Thus, the pollutant flux of the estuary can be easily computed as the product of the mean velocity, cross-sectional area and pollutant concentration. The good agreement between the observed and estimated pollutant flux of the Danshui River estuary shows that the pollutant measured by the conventional and the efficient methods are not fundamentally different. The proposed method is cost-effective and reliable. It can be used to estimate pollutant flux in an estuary accurately and efficiently.
Abstract: Within the context of the Water Framework Directive, the need to identify new monitoring tools in support of the traditional chemical monitoring process is emerging. Chemical characterization by itself does not provide specific biological information about potential hazards to organisms, in particular when facing cocktails of contaminants. Therefore, ecotoxicity tests can represent a useful tool supporting the chemical information. In the present work, the value of ecotoxicity tests as an effect-based tool for monitoring freshwater and sediment quality of the south-western basin of Lake Como (Northern Italy) was evaluated, assessing the potential risk of pollutants. Results obtained from D. magna toxicity tests showed a temporal variation of toxic response in relation to the variability of organic micropollutant load characteristics of urban rivers. Sediment ecotoxicity test data showed the spatial variability of the sediments’ contamination within the lake, confirmed by chemical analysis of two classes of pollutants (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and polychlorobiphenyls (PCB)). The observed effects on organisms in laboratory tests caused by a mixture of almost unknown chemicals underline the importance of integrating effect-based tools into monitoring efforts.
Abstract: Agricultural intensification in America has replaced native warm-season grasses (NWSG) with introduced forages causing wildlife habitat loss and population declines for the northern bobwhite (Colinus virginianus) and similar ground-nesting birds. Reintroducing NWSGs onto managed grasslands to reverse grassland bird population declines lacks information about appropriate multi-purpose management. Post-season nesting habitat quality of mixed NWSGs (indiangrass (IG, Sorghastrum nutans), big bluestem (BB, Andropogon gerardii) andlittle bluestem (LB, Schizachyrium scoparium)) responding to previous-year(s) harvest intervals (treatments, 30-, 40-, 60-, 90 or 120-d) and duration (years in production), were assessed on late-spring-early-summer re-growths. Yearly phased harvestings were initiated in May on sets of randomized plots, ≥90-cm apart, in five replications (blocks) to produce one-, two-, and three-year old stands by the third year. Sward heights and canopy closure were recorded a day before harvest, followed a week after by visual estimates of ground cover of plant species and litter. Harvesting increased post-season grass cover and reduced forbs following a high rainfall year. Harvested plot swards showed no treatment differences, but were shorter and intercepted more sunlight. Similarly, harvest duration increased grass cover with no year effect but reduced forbs following a high rainfall year. One- or two-year full-season harvesting of similar stands may not compromise subsequent bobwhite nesting-cover provided post-season harvesting starts after the breeding cycle is completed.
Abstract: The impact of increasing amendments of two particle sizes of biochar (≤2 mm and 3–7 mm), applied at 0%, 0.01%, 0.1% and 1% concentrations, on the development of indigenous phenanthrene catabolism was investigated in two soils with different soil organic matter contents. Mineralisation of 14C-phenanthrene was measured after 1, 20, 60 and 100 d soil-phenanthrene-biochar aging period. The presence of biochar in the pasture soil (low OM) resulted in a decrease in the lag phase of 14C-phenanthrene mineralisation, with higher maximum rates of mineralisation following 20 d aging. Higher extents of 14C-phenanthrene mineralisation were observed in the Kettering loam soil (high OM), which was more prominent with 0.01% biochar amendments (p < 0.05) at 61.2% and 64.9% in ≤2 mm and 3–7 mm biochar amended soils, respectively. This study illustrates the potential role for biochar to enhance microbial catabolic activity to degrade common petroleum contaminants. It however depends on contaminant concentration, aging period, and soil properties.
Abstract: A linear regression model of particle pollution and an ordered logistic regression model of the relevant index were selected for observations in the US city of Los Angeles, California. Models were used to forecast Air Quality Index (AQI) from a sample, and were compared and contrasted. Methods are comparable overall but markedly different in their powers to predict certain categories. Linear regression models of AQI through particle pollution are more favored to predict moderate air quality; ordered logistic regression models of AQI directly are more favored to predict good air quality.