Pollution Control and Ecological Restoration in Freshwater and Marine Systems

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water Quality and Contamination".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 June 2023) | Viewed by 11021

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Nankai University, Tianjin, China
Interests: environmental geochemistry; environmental bioremediation; pollution control of marine and freshwater systems
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Guest Editor
Key Lab of Water and Sediment Science of Ministry of Education, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
Interests: water resources assessment; water resources management; environmental flow; hydrological modelling
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Guest Editor
Norwegian Institute for Water Research, Oslo, Norway
Interests: biogeochemistry; effects of climate change on water quality; dissolved natural organic matter; heavy metals; eutrophication; reactive nitrogen
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Increased anthropogenic activities threaten eco-environmental quality in freshwater and marine systems. Some old problems, such as eutrophication and acidification, have not been solved yet, while new problems caused by persistent toxic substances or emerging contaminants are appearing. The marine system, especially coastal seas, is often greatly influenced by the freshwater system, as the riverine input of pollutants is often the main source of coastal seas. Furthermore, the combined effect of different pollutants and different systems, or even the co-impact with other eco-environmental stressors should be evaluated and abated. In this Special Issue, not only lab-based theoretical studies but also field-based practical studies on pollution control and ecological restoration in freshwater and marine systems are welcome. In particular, the following topics are encouraged: (1) novel approaches and practices on nutrient (nitrogen, phosphorous) and eutrophication control; (2) watershed systematic solutions for water resource, water environment and water ecology; (3) Interactions between freshwater and marine systems, especially coastal area; (4) monitoring and evaluation of environmental and ecological quality; (5) nature-based solutions for ecological restoration and remediation in coastal area and (6) novel treatment technology of traditional and emerging contaminants.

Prof. Dr. Xueqiang Lu
Prof. Dr. Chunhui Li
Prof. Dr. Rolf David Vogt
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • eutrophication
  • nutrient
  • nitrogen
  • phosphorous
  • emerging contaminants
  • persist toxic substance
  • treatment technology
  • ecological risk
  • pollution control
  • systematic solution

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

12 pages, 2442 KiB  
Article
Assessing the Effect of a Newly Implemented Basic Wastewater Discharge Standard on the Concentrations of Pharmaceutical and Personal Care Products in the Daqing River Basin, China
by Jingyi Xie, Yaran Pan, Boyang Zheng, Yufei Liu, Haixiao Li, Yufeng Wu, Lirong Li, Zhao Shan, Kailing Xin, Naili Wang, Bo Zhang and Xueqiang Lu
Water 2023, 15(6), 1151; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15061151 - 16 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1498
Abstract
Wastewater discharge standards often play a crucial role in water environmental management. However, most of these standards only focus on conventional water pollutants such as chemical oxygen demand (COD), 5-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), ammonia (NH3-N), total nitrogen (TN), [...] Read more.
Wastewater discharge standards often play a crucial role in water environmental management. However, most of these standards only focus on conventional water pollutants such as chemical oxygen demand (COD), 5-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), ammonia (NH3-N), total nitrogen (TN), and total phosphorus (TP). It is unclear if there is an impact on the removal of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs). The Daqing River Basin is an important water system in China. In 2018, a new wastewater discharge standard for the Daqing River Basin (DB 13/2795–2018) was issued, which mainly limits the discharge of conventional water pollutants, including COD (20–40 mg L−1), BOD5 (4–10 mg L−1), NH3-N (1–2 mg L−1), TN (10–15 mg L−1), and TP (0.2–0.4 mg L−1). Herein, we evaluated the performance of the new wastewater discharge standard, especially the effect on the removal of PPCPs. We characterized the occurrence of PPCPs and the resulting ecological impact in the basin, and compared the occurrence of PPCPs before (2017) and after (2021) implementation of the standard. A total of 16 PPCPs were detected, of which diclofenac, carbamazepine, ibuprofen, and bezafibrate pose risks to crustaceans and fish in the basin. A positive impact from the implemented standard, on the removal of some PPCPs, was confirmed, especially for lincomycin and trimethoprim. Full article
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15 pages, 7412 KiB  
Article
Refined Calculation of Multi-Objective Ecological Flow in Rivers, North China
by Yufei Jiao, Jia Liu, Chuanzhe Li, Zhenghe Xu and Yingjie Cui
Water 2023, 15(5), 1003; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15051003 - 06 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1334
Abstract
The concepts and calculation of basic, suitable, and fine ecological flow are put forward, and an integrated multi-method to calculate the ecological flow in rivers under multi-objectives is explored. Based on this, a refined calculation theory and method of a multi-objective ecological flow [...] Read more.
The concepts and calculation of basic, suitable, and fine ecological flow are put forward, and an integrated multi-method to calculate the ecological flow in rivers under multi-objectives is explored. Based on this, a refined calculation theory and method of a multi-objective ecological flow division based on time and space is proposed. That is, three commonly used methods, namely, the hydrology method, the hydraulics method, and the habitat method, are selected to finely calculate the ecological flow demand at different periods, in different sections, and under different ecological objectives. This approach breaks through the traditional ecological water demand calculation method based on hydrology and develops a river ecological flow calculation method based on water environmental protection objectives. A refined calculation method of ecological flow division based on time and space is developed to ensure that the ecological-hydrological process in rivers and lakes meets the ecological flow demand in different periods, different reaches, and different ecological objectives. Taking eight rivers entering Baiyangdian Lake as an example, the ecological flow demand in different river sections under different ecological objectives at different times is calculated to ensure the ecological flow process. The results show that the range of basic ecological flow demand range is 0.07–3.87 m3/s, the range of suitable ecological flow demand is 0.51~10.74 m3/s, and the range of fine ecological flow demand is 0.71~20.29 m3/s. In terms of spatial distribution, Ping River has the lowest demand for ecological flow, and the Zhulong River has the largest. In terms of the interannual ecological demand, those of the Baigou River, Fu River, Xiaoyi River, and Zhulong River are larger. In the demand process across the year, the demand is the largest from July to September, while the demand is the smallest from March to May. Similarly, most rivers face such problems as a sharp decline in runoff, drying up of the river, and an urgent need to restore ecology in northern China. This study also has insights and reference significance for other regions. Full article
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14 pages, 3774 KiB  
Article
How to Create a Regional Diatom-Based Index: Demonstration from the Yuqiao Reservoir Watershed, China
by Yufei Liu, Jing Fang, Pengyu Mei, Shuo Yang, Bo Zhang and Xueqiang Lu
Water 2022, 14(23), 3926; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14233926 - 02 Dec 2022
Viewed by 1404
Abstract
Diatom-based indices derived from the percentage of diatom taxa groups can be used to assess water quality. As some diatoms are location-dependent, such diatom indices are correspondingly location-dependent and the regional classification of taxa group is thereby needed. This study aims to demonstrate [...] Read more.
Diatom-based indices derived from the percentage of diatom taxa groups can be used to assess water quality. As some diatoms are location-dependent, such diatom indices are correspondingly location-dependent and the regional classification of taxa group is thereby needed. This study aims to demonstrate how to create a regional diatom assemblage index (YRDAI) based on a case study from the Yuqiao Reservoir watershed, China. Herein, we proposed a simple taxa classification approach based on the correlation between pollutant concentration and diatom abundance, and compared it with the traditional approach based on the coexistence index. Using the two approaches, a total of 34 diatom taxa groups were reclassified for localization of the well-known DAIpo index. The YRDAI was then derived from the reclassified diatom taxa groups. The results in the Yuqiao Reservoir watershed showed that the correlation-based YRDAIcor scores could better reflect the pollution levels of COD and TP than the coexistence-based YRDAIco scores and the original DAIpo scores with the unreclassified taxa groups. It can be expected that the precision of YRDAI can be improved with the accumulation of the diatom data, and the above approaches can be applied to other watersheds for making their own regional indices. Full article
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13 pages, 2488 KiB  
Article
Response of Algal–Bacterial Regrowth Characteristics to the Hypochlorite in Landscape Ponds Replenished with Reclaimed Water
by Meng Li, Jiaheng Liu, Chao Zhang, Jinli Wang, Pengfeng Li, Jingmei Sun and Yongli Sun
Water 2022, 14(23), 3893; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14233893 - 29 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1355
Abstract
Sodium hypochlorite was widely used as a supplementary disinfectant in reclaimed water (RW) production during the COVID-19 epidemic. It is well known that the chlorination of RW results in a relatively high bacterial regrowth potential in pipeline systems. However, the algal growth and [...] Read more.
Sodium hypochlorite was widely used as a supplementary disinfectant in reclaimed water (RW) production during the COVID-19 epidemic. It is well known that the chlorination of RW results in a relatively high bacterial regrowth potential in pipeline systems. However, the algal growth and algal–bacterial interactions would be another concern in RW-replenished surface water with light irradiation. In this study, microcosmic experiments were used to explore the impact of hypochlorite on the algae–bacteria community, including the influence of hypochlorite on algal–bacterial regrowth, microbial community structure, and the specific bacteria that can survive chlorination. Results demonstrated that algal growth potential could be promoted after chlorination of the RW, and bacteria abundance increased along with an increase in algal density, which is probably related to DOM decomposition by chlorine oxidation. Additionally, the characteristics of the bacterial community were altered. It is more likely that phytospheric bacteria will survive chlorination. It was discovered that the secondary risks of chlorine disinfection include the growth of algae in addition to bacterial regeneration, which is an extension of the common perception. As a consequence, when chlorinated reclaimed water is used as a supplement for urban landscape ponds, particular attention should be paid to controlling bio-available organic matter induced by reactive chlorine, as well as the algal bloom, to decrease the risk of pathogen transmission. Full article
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14 pages, 3886 KiB  
Article
Geochemical Characteristics and Their Environmental Implications for the Water Regime of Hulun Lake, Inner Mongolia, China
by Yan Zhang, Shiyu Wang, Weijie Xu, Bo Zhang, Lixin Yi and Xueqiang Lu
Water 2022, 14(22), 3696; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14223696 - 16 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1646
Abstract
The overall geochemical composition of natural-water regimes reflects the response to long-term interactions between the water and the surrounding environment in the process of its circulation. Their characteristics can reflect both aquatic ecological health and the tracer of the water source, as well [...] Read more.
The overall geochemical composition of natural-water regimes reflects the response to long-term interactions between the water and the surrounding environment in the process of its circulation. Their characteristics can reflect both aquatic ecological health and the tracer of the water source, as well as the water budget. In this study, Hulun Lake, a remote lake in a cold and arid area of China, was chosen in order to analyze its geochemical characteristics, including the major ions, stable isotopes (δD and δ18O) and dissolved organic matter (DOM) in its lake water, river water and groundwater. The major ions in the water were dominated by Na+ + Ca2+-CO32− and the concentration of ions in the groundwater was significantly higher than that in the lake and river water, implying a dry climate and relatively little human disturbance. The δD and δ18O values for both the groundwater and the river water were similar and both were close to the global meteoric water line (GMWL), indicating that their sources were mainly supplied by atmospheric precipitation. However, the δD and δ18O values for lake water were below the GMWL, indicating strong evaporation. The concentration of DOM in the lake water was significantly higher than that in the river water and groundwater, which was affected by the growth of aquatic organisms, and the three-dimensional fluorescence spectrum characteristics also proved that the contribution of biomass sources was greater. Full article
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13 pages, 1902 KiB  
Article
Occurrence, Distribution and Ecological Risk Assessment of Contaminants in Baiyangdian Lake, China
by Sinan He, Mengjing Lin, Longyu Shi and Dingkai Chen
Water 2022, 14(21), 3352; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14213352 - 22 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1329
Abstract
Understanding the ecosystem risk of contaminants in the surface water of lakes in scenic areas is important for environmental management. Here, a comprehensive ecological risk assessment evaluation method was established to assess the ecological risk of 14 water quality indicators of Baiyangdian Lake [...] Read more.
Understanding the ecosystem risk of contaminants in the surface water of lakes in scenic areas is important for environmental management. Here, a comprehensive ecological risk assessment evaluation method was established to assess the ecological risk of 14 water quality indicators of Baiyangdian Lake in the spring, summer, and autumn. The results show that the indices of ammonia nitrogen and permanganate exceed the Class III standard limit for water quality. Baiyangdian Lake is generally in a state of mesotrophication, and some areas are slightly eutrophic; the degree of eutrophication is higher in the summer and autumn than in the spring. The lake water at the inlet is eutrophic and polluted, with an inferior water quality. Heavy metals are almost not detected in Baiyangdian Lake. The heavy metal pollution indices of Nanliuzhuang and Caiputai are slightly higher than those of other areas. The ecological risk quotient of petroleum is high. The comprehensive ecological risk of the Baiyangdian Lake is at Level 4, owing to the continuous development of aquaculture and tourism in recent years. We should start the monitoring, management, and strengthening of water quality supervision to achieve the ecological and environmental planning goals of Baiyangdian Lake. Full article
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8 pages, 1390 KiB  
Article
Temperature May Play a More Important Role in Environmental DNA Decay than Ultraviolet Radiation
by Xue Yu, Jiaying Zhou, Jun Wei, Bo Zhang and Xueqiang Lu
Water 2022, 14(19), 3178; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14193178 - 09 Oct 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1369
Abstract
Environmental DNA (eDNA) preservation is crucial for biological monitoring using eDNA technology. The decay of eDNA over time in natural water bodies and the effects of temperature and ultraviolet (UV) radiation on the decay rate are largely unknown. In this study, the linear [...] Read more.
Environmental DNA (eDNA) preservation is crucial for biological monitoring using eDNA technology. The decay of eDNA over time in natural water bodies and the effects of temperature and ultraviolet (UV) radiation on the decay rate are largely unknown. In this study, the linear and exponential decay models were used to explore the relationship between residual eDNA content and decay time, respectively. It was found that the residual eDNA content treated with a higher temperature decreased by an average of 89.65% at the end of experiment, while those in the 4 °C treatment group remained stable. The higher decision coefficient (R2) of the exponential decay models indicated that they could better reflect the decay of eDNA over time than linear. The difference in the decay rates of the exponential modes was slight between the 20 °C (25.47%) and 20 °C + UV treatment groups (31.64%), but both were much higher than that of the 4 °C group (2.94%). The results suggest that water temperature significantly affected the decay rate of eDNA, while UV radiation had little effect. Full article
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15 pages, 868 KiB  
Article
Multi-Level Determinants of Acceptance in Centralized Pesticide Delivery among Farmers: Evidence from Huangshan City, China
by Changxin Li and Leshan Jin
Water 2022, 14(10), 1566; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14101566 - 13 May 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1600
Abstract
Highly toxic pesticides bring negative externalities to water pollution, which increase the demand for green pesticides that are low-toxic and high-efficiency. With the implementation of the unique the Centralized Pesticide Distribution (CPD) policy aiming to reduce the use of chemical pesticides in Huangshan, [...] Read more.
Highly toxic pesticides bring negative externalities to water pollution, which increase the demand for green pesticides that are low-toxic and high-efficiency. With the implementation of the unique the Centralized Pesticide Distribution (CPD) policy aiming to reduce the use of chemical pesticides in Huangshan, we try to explore the factors that affect farmers’ acceptance of CPD and thus change their pesticides selection. Based on the theory of farmers’ ecological rationality, we build a decision-making ecosystem on accepting CPD and assuming that farmers’ behavior is determined hierarchically by factors, then the Logistic-AISM model is used for empirical testing using data collected from 233 representative farmers. The results show that the proportion of agri-income and participation in cooperatives fundamentally affected choices for CPD acceptance through two middle-level indirect factor: government publicity and the availability of agri-information by changing farmers’ cognition on pesticides and production status. Thus, CPD may be improved by selling a richer variety of insecticides and implementing more publicity. Lessons from China inspire other intensive farming countries to promote green pesticides by: expanding the sales channel of green agri-products, playing the auxiliary role of cooperatives, and inventing more eco-friendly pesticides. Full article
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17 pages, 4806 KiB  
Article
Efficiency of Water Pollution Control Based on a Three-Stage SBM-DEA Model
by Yongdi Chen, Chunhui Li, Xiaoxuan Li, Xiaolan Zhang and Qian Tan
Water 2022, 14(9), 1453; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14091453 - 01 May 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2560
Abstract
With the growing severity of water pollution issues, the prevention and control of water pollution became highly complicated and challenging, and the investment in water pollution control has been constantly increased. Scientific evaluation of efficiency is critical to recognize whether the investments in [...] Read more.
With the growing severity of water pollution issues, the prevention and control of water pollution became highly complicated and challenging, and the investment in water pollution control has been constantly increased. Scientific evaluation of efficiency is critical to recognize whether the investments in water pollution control are effective. However, most studies could not exclude the influences of external environmental and random factors when evaluating the efficiency of water pollution control, resulting in biased results. To overcome this shortcoming, this study employed a three-stage SBM-DEA (slacks-based measure-data envelopment analysis) model to determine the efficiency of water pollution control efforts in a city of China from 2003 to 2017. The results showed that water quality in the study area has been significantly improved due to those pollution control efforts. The influences from external environmental and stochastic factors have led to an underestimation of the efficiency of water pollution control in the first stage. After excluding these effects in the second stage, the adjusted efficiency of water pollution control showed a fluctuating upward trend in the third stage, reflecting the true effectiveness of efforts to prevent and control water pollution in the study cities, with an average efficiency of 0.87. Finally, several suggestions for enhancing the efficiency of water pollution control in Chengde were proposed. Full article
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