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Water 2019, 11(4), 769; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11040769

RZ-TRADEOFF: A New Model to Estimate Riparian Water and Air Quality Functions

1
Department of Forest and Natural Resources Management, The State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY ESF), 1 Forestry Drive, Syracuse, NY 13201, USA
2
Department of Natural Resources, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 02881, USA
3
Department of Geosciences, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 02881, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 19 March 2019 / Revised: 9 April 2019 / Accepted: 10 April 2019 / Published: 13 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Water Quality and Ecosystems)
PDF [488 KB, uploaded 13 April 2019]

Abstract

Riparian zones are often used as best management practices due to their ability to remove nitrate (NO3) from subsurface flow. Research suggests that beyond local biogeochemical controls, the impact of riparian zones on nitrogen removal and other functions, such as phosphorus dynamics and greenhouse gas emissions, largely depends on land-use/land-cover, hydrogeomorphology, and weather. In this study, we therefore present RZ-TRADEOFF, a novel and easily applicable model that connects multiple riparian functions and characteristics (NO3 and phosphate (PO43), concentration and removal in subsurface flow, total phosphorus (TP) removal in overland flow, nitrous oxide (N2O), methane (CH4), and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, water table) to landscape hydrogeomorphic characteristics, weather, and land-cover/land-use. RZ-TRADEOFF was developed with data from past studies and digital databases, and validated with data collected from the literature. Three functions (water table, PO43 and CO2) were observed to be significantly influenced by climate/weather, while the others were primarily influenced by hydrogeomorphology and land use. The percent bias and normalized root mean square error respectively were −3.35% and 0.28 for water table, 16.00% and 0.34 for NO3 concentration, −7.83% and 20.82 for NO3 removal, 6.64% and 0.35 for PO43 concentration, 2.55% and 0.17 for TP removal, 40.33% and 0.23 for N2O, 72.68% and 0.18 for CH4, and −34.98% and 0.91 for CO2. From a management standpoint, RZ-TRADEOFF significantly advances our ability to predict multiple water and air quality riparian functions using easily accessible data over large areas of the landscape due to its scalability.
Keywords: model; riparian zone; water quality; hydrology; air quality model; riparian zone; water quality; hydrology; air quality
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Hassanzadeh, Y.T.; Vidon, P.G.; Gold, A.J.; Pradhanang, S.M.; Lowder, K.A. RZ-TRADEOFF: A New Model to Estimate Riparian Water and Air Quality Functions. Water 2019, 11, 769.

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