Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2023) | Viewed by 9903

Special Issue Editor

Vernadsky Institute of Geochemistry and Analytical Chemistry of Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia
Interests: biogeochemistry; aquatic geochemistry and ecology; water quality; toxic impacts; eutrophication; acidification; diagnostic criteria of early worrying in water ecosystems; critical levels and loads
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Taking into account the high importance of fresh water to the world's population and for the preservation of its species diversity, the high relevance of water resources studies under the influence of increasing anthropogenic loads is obvious. The transformation of watersheds, airborne streams, industrial and domestic wastewaters leading to water pollution, changes in geochemical cycles in the "catchment–reservoir" system, acidification, the eutrophication of lakes and rivers, and the diffusion of toxic substances in water reduce the quality of water and the biodiversity of aquatic systems. Climate warming also leads to changes in hydrological cycles and the cycle of elements and substances. The aim of this Special Issue is to combine the results of studies on the anthropogenic impact on water resources and water quality, forecasts of the consequences of increasing anthropogenic loads in conditions of climate warming, and assessments of reducing the negative consequences of water pollution and water restoration.

The scope of the Special Issue includes:

  • Chemistry and biology of water under point-source and diffuse water pollution, airborne pollution of catchments, transport processes, and toxic contaminants (metals and pops), as well as aquatic ecosystem health assessments.
  • Nutrient loads and eutrophication, acid loads and acidification, critical values and recovery from a long-term perspective.
  • Climate warming impacts on water resources: hydrology, quality, and risk assessment.
  • Mathematical modeling, systems analysis, and beneficial use of big data related to the anthropogenic water cycle and quality.

Prof. Dr. Tatyana Moiseenko
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • surface water
  • anthropogenic impacts
  • climate warming
  • hydrology
  • chemistry
  • risk assessment

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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19 pages, 16579 KiB  
Article
Assessment of Groundwater Decontamination Processes around a Dismantled Septic Tank Using GIS and Statistical Analysis
Water 2023, 15(5), 884; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15050884 - 24 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1707
Abstract
Septic tanks without proper construction and insulation entail a significant risk to the environment. In this study, the environmental impacts of a permeably designed septic tank on shallow groundwater contamination are investigated, and changes in water quality in the period after its elimination [...] Read more.
Septic tanks without proper construction and insulation entail a significant risk to the environment. In this study, the environmental impacts of a permeably designed septic tank on shallow groundwater contamination are investigated, and changes in water quality in the period after its elimination in 2014 are assessed. For the purpose of evaluating the pollution level of the site, 10 monitoring wells were installed around the septic tank in 2012 and long-term monitoring was carried out. Analytical measurements revealed a significant level of groundwater contamination in the operational period of the septic tank. Extremely high concentrations of NH4+ (>90 mg/L) were observed in the closest monitoring wells, and in most of the wells, concentrations exceeded the relevant contamination limit. δD and δ18O isotopic ratios of monitoring wells within 1 m from the septic tank indicate continuous recharge of sewage water originating from deeper aquifers. The groundwater dome resulting from the wastewater discharge exceeded 1.1 m, within a distance of 25 m. Statistical analyses also revealed significant changes in water quality depending on the monitoring well location from the septic tank. In the period after the septic tank elimination, considerable changes have been detected. Following the cessation of the wastewater discharge, the groundwater dome around the septic tank disappeared; therefore, differences in groundwater levels have decreased from more than 1 m to a few cm. Significant positive changes were detected in the water quality parameters investigated after the dismantling of the septic tank. Five years after the cessation of the pollutant supply, concentrations still exceeded the contamination limit in most of the monitoring wells, indicating slow decontamination processes with a permanently high level of pollution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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22 pages, 5932 KiB  
Article
Assessing Climate and Human Activity Effects on Hypersaline Lake Ecosystem: Case Study of Saki Lake, Crimea
Water 2023, 15(3), 456; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15030456 - 23 Jan 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1940
Abstract
In the Crimean Peninsula, there are several hypersaline lakes that have hydromineral and biological resources. However, they are under a significant anthropogenic load, which together with the climate change leads to negative consequences for the ecosystems. The aim of the work was to [...] Read more.
In the Crimean Peninsula, there are several hypersaline lakes that have hydromineral and biological resources. However, they are under a significant anthropogenic load, which together with the climate change leads to negative consequences for the ecosystems. The aim of the work was to study the seasonal changes of physicochemical parameters of water (temperature, pH, oxygen content, salinity, redox potential Eh, optical density and transparency) and Artemia population in Saki Lake in 2022. For the daily fluctuations of temperature, O2, CH4 and CO2, a vertical temperature profile measuring system was installed at the boundaries of the air, water and bottom at a depth of 4 m and with a spatial discreteness of 0.2 m. The drive sensors for the content of gases assay in the air were installed. The increase in salinity and Eh in summer was accompanied by an increase in air and water temperature. Simultaneously, decreases in oxygen content and pH in brine have been observed. Artemia cysts were found throughout the year, nauplii were mostly available during spring and autumn, and the adults were shown in summer. The obtained results demonstrated the seasonal fluctuations in the hypersaline ecosystem within the ongoing climate change, and they can be used for the development of the optimal management of the mineral and biological resources of such water bodies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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18 pages, 3039 KiB  
Article
The Species Structure of Plankton Communities as a Response to Changes in the Trophic Gradient of the Mouth Areas of Large Tributaries to a Lowland Reservoir
Water 2023, 15(1), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15010074 - 26 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1913
Abstract
The mouth areas of large rivers can serve as a good model of heterogeneity sites with a pronounced trophic gradient to assess the impact of the degree of eutrophication on different plankton communities. The aim of this research was to identify the possible [...] Read more.
The mouth areas of large rivers can serve as a good model of heterogeneity sites with a pronounced trophic gradient to assess the impact of the degree of eutrophication on different plankton communities. The aim of this research was to identify the possible response of the diversity indicators of phyto- and zooplankton communities to trophic gradients in the mouth area of two large tributaries of the reservoir, formed in the Middle Volga River (Russia). Both linear regression models and canonical correlation analysis (CCA) were used to assess the role of abiotic and biotic predictors in the structural organization of plankton communities and to assess the changes in the parameters of the species plankton community structure in the trophic gradient. It was found that the species diversity (Adjusted R2 = 0.116) and evenness (Adjusted R2 = 0.114) of phytoplankton significantly decreased with an increase in the degree of eutrophication, while the species diversity (Adjusted R2 = 0.059) and evenness (Adjusted R2 = 0.073) of zooplankton increased. According to the CCA models, electrical conductivity (EC) explained the largest proportion of the observed dispersion. The Trophic State Index (TSI) explained 3.0% of the total variance in the phytoplankton community species structure and 7.8% in the zooplankton one. The variation in phyto- and zooplankton dominant complexes generally corresponded to the well-known patterns of plankton species succession in the gradient of trophic conditions and can be considered as a classic manifestation of the cascade effect in the food chains of freshwater plankton communities. Our results highlight the necessity of studying the mouth river areas, as well as applying an integrated approach to investigating the response of plankton communities to eutrophication processes of continental water bodies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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19 pages, 1883 KiB  
Article
Development of Lake from Acidification to Eutrophication in the Arctic Region under Reduced Acid Deposition and Climate Warming
Water 2022, 14(21), 3467; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14213467 - 30 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1581
Abstract
Small lakes are potentially effective environmental sensors; they react quickly to anthropogenic stressors. We studied the long-term response of water chemistry to reduced acid deposition and climate warming in the Kola Arctic region of Russia based on monitoring data from 75 lakes. Monitoring [...] Read more.
Small lakes are potentially effective environmental sensors; they react quickly to anthropogenic stressors. We studied the long-term response of water chemistry to reduced acid deposition and climate warming in the Kola Arctic region of Russia based on monitoring data from 75 lakes. Monitoring was carried out once every 4–5 years in 1990–2018, with analysis for major anions and cations, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and heavy metals (Ni and Cu). Analysis of archive data on the weather allowed us to reliably identify trends toward a systematic temperature increase over the past 28 years. The population of the lakes under study was proven to generally show a decrease in the concentrations of anthropogenic sulfates and the strengthening of the acid-neutralizing capacity (ANC) of the waters during this period. The concentrations of both DOC and nutrients (Ptot and Ntot) in the lake waters were determined to increase. This phenomenon can be explained by the following two mechanisms: a decrease in the deposition of strong acids and climate warming. We suggest that the effects of multiple factors on the surface waters result in an irreversible evolution of the lakes; hence, the term recovery does not adequately reflect the processes occurring in this industrially well-developed part of the Arctic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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16 pages, 4095 KiB  
Article
Fate of Heavy Metals in the Surface Water-Dump Rock System of the Mine Lupikko I (Karelia): Field Observations and Geochemical Modeling
Water 2022, 14(21), 3382; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14213382 - 25 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1283
Abstract
Abandoned mines are sources of potentially toxic chemical elements, although the development of these objects was completed. The Lupikko I mine area (Karelia Republic, Russia) is an excellent example of such technogenic objects. It is one of the largest mines in the Pitkäranta [...] Read more.
Abandoned mines are sources of potentially toxic chemical elements, although the development of these objects was completed. The Lupikko I mine area (Karelia Republic, Russia) is an excellent example of such technogenic objects. It is one of the largest mines in the Pitkäranta area, which was abandoned more than one hundred years ago. The dump rocks here are characterized by significant mineral diversity. Disseminated ore mineralization of the study area contains heavy metals, which enter the natural waters due to the oxidative dissolution of sulfides. Dump rocks and water from the Lupikko I mine area were collected to research the behavior of toxic elements. The samples were analyzed using ICP-MS, ICP-AES, potentiometric titration, ionic chromatography, X-ray microanalysis, X-ray fluorescence, and SEM to obtain information about the geochemical environment. According to new data, the content of Fe, Zn, Cu, Pb, Cd, and Ni in the natural waters of the mine significantly exceeds the geochemical background. For a more detailed study of the behavior of heavy metals, equilibrium-kinetic modeling, which considers the dissolution rate of ore minerals and the accumulation of toxic elements over time, was applied. A comparison of modeling data and field observations agreed. It was also found that for accurate modeling of Fe behavior, it is necessary to consider the organic matter content. Despite some model limitations, such retrospective assessments allow us to approve the applicability of this method for forecasting estimates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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19 pages, 2187 KiB  
Article
Major, Trace and Rare Earth Element Distribution in Water, Suspended Particulate Matter and Stream Sediments of the Ob River Mouth
Water 2022, 14(15), 2442; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14152442 - 06 Aug 2022
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2451
Abstract
Ongoing climatic changes are influencing the volume and composition of the river waters that enter the Arctic Basin. This hydrochemical study was conducted within the mouth of the Ob River, which is one of the world’s largest rivers, providing 15% of the Arctic [...] Read more.
Ongoing climatic changes are influencing the volume and composition of the river waters that enter the Arctic Basin. This hydrochemical study was conducted within the mouth of the Ob River, which is one of the world’s largest rivers, providing 15% of the Arctic Ocean’s total intake. Concentrations of suspended and dissolved elements were determined using ICP–MS and ICP–AES. As compared to the world average values, the Ob river water had higher concentrations of dissolved P, As, Cu, Zn, Pb and Sb, i.e., the elements that form soluble organo-mineral complexes. The composition of suspended matter was characterized by low concentrations of most trace elements (Cd, Cr, Co, Cu, Mo, Al, Ni, Pb, V) due to their low contents in peat soils within the river drainage basin. Concentrations of dissolved forms were many times lower than concentrations of suspended forms in Al, Fe, Mn, Zn, Cr, Co, Ti, Sc, and all rare earth elements. Total concentrations of Ni, Cu, Bi, Pb, W in the river water increased by 2.5 to 4.2 times during the summer. The effects of climate change, which can cause an increase in the discharge of solid particles from thawing permafrost, are likely to lead to an increase in the discharge of certain elements into the Ob River estuary. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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Review

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17 pages, 1454 KiB  
Review
Surface Water under Growing Anthropogenic Loads: From Global Perspectives to Regional Implications
Water 2022, 14(22), 3730; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14223730 - 17 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1380
Abstract
This paper reviews currently available evaluations of the effects of continuously increasing anthropogenic loads on water resources. The increase in the fluxes of elements and compounds into the environment, such as the emission of greenhouse gases and dispersion of nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus), [...] Read more.
This paper reviews currently available evaluations of the effects of continuously increasing anthropogenic loads on water resources. The increase in the fluxes of elements and compounds into the environment, such as the emission of greenhouse gases and dispersion of nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus), acidifying gases, and toxic elements and compounds that adversely affect water quality, are considered. The significance of fresh waters as a life support factor for human populations is demonstrated. Examples illustrate how key anthropogenic-induced processes develop in land waters under the effect of anthropogenic loads, as exemplified by the Russian Kola regions. Climate warming and the increasing dispersion of elements are demonstrated to result in the eutrophication of surface waters, even in areas remote from anthropogenically impacted regions. Although the emissions of acidifying gases diminish, the waters are still acidified in acid-vulnerable areas, and the chemical compositions of the waters have been significantly modified over the past decades, indicating that the changes in the chemical composition of the waters are irreversible. A new feature of the waters is distinguished: the toxicity of the habitats for aquatic organisms. The novelty of the work was to highlight the bridge between anthropogenic loads on surface water on a planetary scale and their consequences in certain regions, which reflect changes in water quality. Arguments are presented for establishing a theoretical approach for evaluating critical loads. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Resources under Growing Anthropogenic Loads)
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