Special Issue "Processes Influencing Water Quality in Surface Catchments in the Context of the Local and Global Distribution of Pollutants"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Żaneta Polkowska
Website
Guest Editor
Gdansk University of Technology, Chemical Faculty, Department of Analytical Chemistry, Gdansk, Poland
Interests: environmental analytics; water quality; environmental fate of pollutants; distribution of contaminants; interactions between chemical compounds and the environment (biotic and abiotic)

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Environmental pollution is a global problem, particularly reflected in the hydrology of catchments, by changing the quality of the water circulating in them. Furthermore, some pollutants can be used as markers of the physical and chemical processes occurring in surface waters. Factors influencing the state of the environment of catchments include the geographic location and local physical-geographical conditions, as well as the occurrence of pollution sources within the catchment and outside of it. Research on the issue of pollutant transport requires an interdisciplinary approach and consideration of the multi-aspect character of the observed processes. Therefore, I invite authors to contribute articles on the important processes for changing water quality in surface catchments located across the globe, and on the interactions between these processes.

Prof. Dr. Żaneta Polkowska
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • water quality
  • surface catchment
  • pollution
  • local and global distribution
  • hydrological regime
  • runoff
  • fluxes

Published Papers (12 papers)

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Research

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Changes in Hydromorphological Conditions in an Endorheic Lake Influenced by Climate and Increasing Water Consumption, and Potential Effects on Water Quality
Water 2020, 12(5), 1348; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12051348 - 09 May 2020
Abstract
The study aims to analyse changes in the morphological conditions of the endorheic Lake Borówno (39.06 ha) that occurred in the 20th century and early 21st century. The analysis was based on bathymetric measurements carried out in 2018 and cartographic materials, and performed [...] Read more.
The study aims to analyse changes in the morphological conditions of the endorheic Lake Borówno (39.06 ha) that occurred in the 20th century and early 21st century. The analysis was based on bathymetric measurements carried out in 2018 and cartographic materials, and performed using QGIS 3.10 and SAGA GIS 6.4 software. Moreover, changes in physical (temperature, transparency), chemical (dissolved oxygen, phosphorus, and nitrogen content) and biological (chlorophyll a, phytoplankton) parameters were analysed based on the results of measurements conducted by the Voivodeship Inspectorate of Environment Protection (VIEP) in Bydgoszcz in the period 1984–2017. It was found that Lake Borówno is subject to a constant reduction in surface area and volume, the rate of which increased in the second decade of the 21st century. The lake’s progressive disappearance results from the co-occurrence of hydrological drought over the last several years and an increase in the use of groundwater resources. A decrease in the maximum depth of the lake entails a change in temperature distribution in the vertical profile, which contributes to the tendency toward the lake transforming into an unstratified reservoir. The increase in water temperature affects oxygen content in the bottom water, improves water transparency, and influences the maximum occurrence of chlorophyll a in spring. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Hydrodynamic Controls of Particulate Metals Partitioning Along the Lower Selenga River—Main Tributary of The Lake Baikal
Water 2020, 12(5), 1345; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12051345 - 09 May 2020
Abstract
In this study, the downstream effects of pollutants spreading due to hydromorphological gradients and associated changes in sediment transport conditions along the braided-meandering and deltaic distributary reach of a large river downstream section are discussed. We demonstrate the significance of hydrodynamic control for [...] Read more.
In this study, the downstream effects of pollutants spreading due to hydromorphological gradients and associated changes in sediment transport conditions along the braided-meandering and deltaic distributary reach of a large river downstream section are discussed. We demonstrate the significance of hydrodynamic control for sediment-associated metal partitioning along the river. Typically, the downward decline of the sediment and metals spreading towards Lake Baikal is observed due to buffer effects in the delta. During peak flow, the longitudinal gradients in heavy metal concentration along the distributary delta reach are neglected due to higher concentrations delivered from the upper parts of the river. In particular, significant variations of heavy metal concentrations associated with the river depth are related to sediment concentration and flow velocity profiles. Various particulate metal behavior in silt-sand delta channels and the sand–gravel Selenga main stem emphasize the importance of near-bottom exchange for particles spreading with the river flow. Using empirically derived Rouse numbers, we found quantitative relationships between the ratio of particulate metals sorting throughout depth in a single river channel and the hydrodynamic conditions of sediment transport. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Spatial Differentiation and Multiannual Dynamics of Water Conductivity in Lakes of the Suwałki Landscape Park
Water 2020, 12(5), 1277; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12051277 - 30 Apr 2020
Abstract
Water conductivity in 23 lakes of the Suwałki Landscape Park (SLP) was tested in the years 2012–2014. Conductivity profiles were made at the deepest place every two months between spring and autumn water mixing. The collected measurement data, supplemented with historical data, were [...] Read more.
Water conductivity in 23 lakes of the Suwałki Landscape Park (SLP) was tested in the years 2012–2014. Conductivity profiles were made at the deepest place every two months between spring and autumn water mixing. The collected measurement data, supplemented with historical data, were used to identify factors that shape the spatial variability of water conductivity and to reconstruct its multiannual changes. The range of variability of the mean conductivity of surface water of the SLP lakes ranged from 178 to 522 µS cm−1. The strong negative relationship between conductivity and lake elevation (R = 0.816, p < 0.000) suggests that in the territorially compact complex of the SLP lakes, conductivity is a consequence of the location of the lake in the catchment, which, in turn, affects the structure of its water supply. However, the physical and environmental parameters of the catchment and morphometric parameters of lake basins are of secondary importance. In dimictic lakes and in those showing signs of “spring meromixis”, the magnitude of conductivity differences in the water column is determined by the lakes’ susceptibility to wind mixing expressed by the exposure index value. The developed climate models have also shown that conductivity, an indicator of water quality, is very sensitive to climate change. The analysis of the reconstructed chronological conductivity sequences shows that the deterioration of the quality of the waters of the SLP lakes first occurred at the beginning of the 21st century and a clear increasing trend has been maintained over the last decade. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Assessment of the Dnieper Alluvial Riverbed Stability Affected by Intervention Discharge Downstream of Kaniv Dam
Water 2020, 12(4), 1104; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12041104 - 13 Apr 2020
Abstract
Along the middle reaches of the Dnieper River in central Ukraine, braided riverbeds with many islands have developed in alluvial valleys. In the 1970s, six dams were commissioned, and respective monitoring infrastructure was installed. Riverbanks and valley floors composed of unconsolidated material have [...] Read more.
Along the middle reaches of the Dnieper River in central Ukraine, braided riverbeds with many islands have developed in alluvial valleys. In the 1970s, six dams were commissioned, and respective monitoring infrastructure was installed. Riverbanks and valley floors composed of unconsolidated material have much lower bank strengths and are susceptible to fluvial erosion and bank collapse, particularly during the release of high flow volumes from hydropower dams. The regulation of the Dnieper River along a cascade of storage reservoirs caused significant changes in its active river channel and hydrological regime. In order to estimate channel stability downstream of the Kaniv reservoir, we conducted an analysis of the hydraulic conditions in terms of changes in flow velocity and propagation of waves caused by intervention water discharges from the Kaniv Hydroelectric Power Plant (HPP). In this paper, we assess the hydromorphological parameters of the studied river reach as well as the characteristics of the related erosion and deposition zones. Therefore, a monitoring framework for channel processes (MCP) downstream of the Kaniv HPP was installed. The analysis of the intervention discharge parameters was conducted based on measurements from July 2015. Channel stability was expressed by the following factors: Lohtin’s number (L), Makkaveev’s (Kc) factor of stability, and a complex index of stability (Mx) by Grishanin. This study shows that the velocity of artificial wave propagation may reach a speed of up to 74.4 km·h−1. The wave propagates for a distance of approx. 45 km within 65 min at a mean velocity of 37.4 km·h−1. The L, Kc, and Mx indicators used in this work showed that when water discharge increased (e.g., during typical peak-capacity operation), the channel becomes unstable and sediments are subject to erosion processes. The riverbed stability indicators clearly illustrate that an increase in parameter values is not dependent on the distance to the dam. The results are valuable for sustainable sediment management at catchment scale and hence, directly applicable in water management. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Changes in Potential Evaporation in the Years 1952–2018 in North-Western Poland in Terms of the Impact of Climatic Changes on Hydrological and Hydrochemical Conditions
Water 2020, 12(3), 877; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12030877 - 20 Mar 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
The paper analyses changes in potential evaporation E0 (mm) in north-western Poland in the years 1952–2018. E0 (mm) has been calculated according to Ivanov’s formula based on the monthly values of air temperature (t, °C) and relative air humidity [...] Read more.
The paper analyses changes in potential evaporation E0 (mm) in north-western Poland in the years 1952–2018. E0 (mm) has been calculated according to Ivanov’s formula based on the monthly values of air temperature (t, °C) and relative air humidity (f, %) for six weather stations of the Institute of Meteorology and Water Management. The data were collected using the Statistica software ver. 13 and the QGIS software ver. 3.80. The results indicate statistically significant trends in the increase of E0 during the period 1952–2018, and that it is particularly high during the spring and summer months, which should be associated with a statistically significant increase in air temperature and a decrease in relative humidity at all examined stations. The results also indicate an exceptionally high increase in evaporation since the end of the 20th century and in the 21st century, which reflects a potentially higher risk of permanent changes in hydrological conditions. The research results point to the major role of climatic factors in the often-dramatic decreases in water resources observed in the 21st century, particularly in lakes and small watercourses. The progressing reduction of water resources may cause permanent changes in physical and chemical conditions in waterbodies. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Heavy Metals in a High Arctic Fiord and Their Introduction with the Wastewater: A Case Study of Adventfjorden-Longyearbyen System, Svalbard
Water 2020, 12(3), 794; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12030794 - 12 Mar 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Longyearbyen is the largest settlement on Svalbard archipelago, with 2400 permanent residents and approximately 150,000 tourists visiting every year. The city annually releases approximately 285,000 m3 of untreated wastewater to the nearby Adventfjorden. To date, the environmental impact of this continuous input [...] Read more.
Longyearbyen is the largest settlement on Svalbard archipelago, with 2400 permanent residents and approximately 150,000 tourists visiting every year. The city annually releases approximately 285,000 m3 of untreated wastewater to the nearby Adventfjorden. To date, the environmental impact of this continuous input has been studied mainly regarding the sediments and benthic fauna in the fiord. Here, we present results from a study of raw wastewater entering Adventfjorden as well as heavy metals concentrations in the water column within the fjord itself. Two surveys were carried out in summer and autumn season 2018, to establish physical and chemical properties of water at various locations. Trace elements (V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Hg, As, Cd, Pb, U), total suspended solids (TSS) and total organic carbon (TOC) were measured. Our results show that Longyearbyen’s raw wastewater introduces low concentrations of heavy metals to the fiord, but due to the growing number of inhabitants and tourists, it should be monitored to avoid degradation of Adventfjorden ecosystem Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Evaluation of Water Quality in Ialomita River Basin in Relationship with Land Cover Patterns
Water 2020, 12(3), 735; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12030735 - 07 Mar 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
The paper reviews the state of water quality in Ialomita River Basin (IRB), Romania, between 2007 and 2018 using the land use/land cover and basin-specific conditions effects on sediments and nutrients load. On-site monitoring was performed in two control sections of the Ialomita [...] Read more.
The paper reviews the state of water quality in Ialomita River Basin (IRB), Romania, between 2007 and 2018 using the land use/land cover and basin-specific conditions effects on sediments and nutrients load. On-site monitoring was performed in two control sections of the Ialomita River, one in the upper part of the basin (near Targoviste city) and the second near the discharge into the Danube (downstream of Tandarei town). The statistical averages of water parameters for 10 years’ monitoring in the control section that is close to the Ialomita River discharge in Danube were pH = 7.60 (range: 6.41–8.40), NH4-N = 1.20 mg/L (0.02–14.87), alkalinity = 4.12 mmol/L (1.34–6.27), NO3-N = 2.60 mg/L (0.08–17.30), PO4-P = 0.09 mg/L (0–0,31), dissolved oxygen (DO) = 8.87 mg/L (2.72–15.96), BOD5 = 5.50 mg/L (0.01–74.71), suspended solids (TSS) = 508.32 mg/L (15.2–4457), total dissolved salts (TDS) = 733.69 mg/L (455.2–1053), and river discharge = 38.60 m3/s (8.22–165). Expected mean concentration and soil and water assessment tool (SWAT) modeling have been employed in the GIS environment to extend the approach to large spatial patterns within the basin. The estimated average specific emission on the total area for nitrogen was 3.2 kg N/ha, and 0.3 kg P/ha for phosphorus highly influenced by the agricultural activities. The results are useful to raise awareness regarding water-quality degradation and the need to stop and even reverse such trends for local and national sustainable development. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Assessment of Spatial Variation in River Water Quality of the Baiyangdian Basin (China) during Environmental Water Release Period of Upstream Reservoirs
Water 2020, 12(3), 688; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12030688 - 03 Mar 2020
Abstract
Baiyangdian Lake, the largest freshwater body in Northern China, is facing water shortage and eutrophication problems that threaten the lake’s ecosystem. Environmental water releases from upstream reservoirs to the lake are important measures to provide the freshwater resources demanded by the lake ecosystem. [...] Read more.
Baiyangdian Lake, the largest freshwater body in Northern China, is facing water shortage and eutrophication problems that threaten the lake’s ecosystem. Environmental water releases from upstream reservoirs to the lake are important measures to provide the freshwater resources demanded by the lake ecosystem. However, knowledge is limited regarding the influences of such water allocations on the water quality of the upstream rivers that receive the reservoir water and transport it into Baiyangdian Lake. To improve our understanding of possible influences of environmental water releases from upstream reservoirs, the spatial variation of water quality in rivers upstream of the lake during environmental water release periods from reservoirs was explored in this study. Water samples were collected along the two routes of water allocation: the WangKuai reservoir route (WKR) and the XiDaYang reservoir route (XDYR) and water quality parameters related to organic pollutants, nitrogen and phosphorus were analyzed. In the WKR, the pollutant concentrations generally increased from upstream to downstream. Chemical oxygen demand, total nitrogen, and total phosphorous at the sampling site closest to Baiyangdian Lake could not meet the water quality target of the water function zone. For the XDYR, pollutant concentrations peaked downstream of the major urban region of Baoding city and then decreased or remained at a similar level further downstream and only the total nitrogen concentration was worse than the target. The dissimilarities in spatial variation patterns of water quality may be caused by the different spatial distribution of wastewater treatment plants in the two routes. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Spatial Differences in the Chemical Composition of Surface Water in the Hornsund Fjord Area: A Statistical Analysis with A Focus on Local Pollution Sources
Water 2020, 12(2), 496; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12020496 - 12 Feb 2020
Abstract
Surface catchments in Svalbard are sensitive to external pollution, and yet what is frequently considered external contamination may originate from local sources and natural processes. In this work, we analyze the chemical composition of surface waters in the catchments surrounding the Polish Polar [...] Read more.
Surface catchments in Svalbard are sensitive to external pollution, and yet what is frequently considered external contamination may originate from local sources and natural processes. In this work, we analyze the chemical composition of surface waters in the catchments surrounding the Polish Polar Station in Svalbard, Hornsund fjord area. We have pooled unpublished and already published data describing surface water composition in 2010, related to its pH, electrical conductivity (EC), metals and metalloids, total organic carbon (TOC) and selected organic compound concentrations, including persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and surfactants. These data were statistically analyzed for spatial differences, using Kruskal–Wallis ANOVA and principal component analysis (PCA), with distance from the station in the PCA approximating local human activity impact. The geological composition of the substratum was found to be a strong determinant of metal and metalloid concentrations, sufficient to explain significant differences between the studied water bodies, except for the concentration of Cr. The past and present human activity in the area may have contributed also to some of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), although only in the case of naphthalene can such an effect be confirmed by an inverse correlation with distance from the station. Other likely factors contributing to the chemical concentrations in the local waters are marine influence, long-range pollution transport and release from past deposition in the environment. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Contamination of Arctic Lakes with Persistent Toxic PAH Substances in the NW Part of Wedel Jarlsberg Land (Bellsund, Svalbard)
Water 2020, 12(2), 411; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12020411 - 04 Feb 2020
Abstract
The expansion of glacier-free areas in polar regions favours the appearance of lakes in the non-glaciated parts of glacier basins. This paper presents the differentiation of organic compound concentrations in fifty-four Arctic lakes collected in four locations (Logne Valley, in the vicinity of [...] Read more.
The expansion of glacier-free areas in polar regions favours the appearance of lakes in the non-glaciated parts of glacier basins. This paper presents the differentiation of organic compound concentrations in fifty-four Arctic lakes collected in four locations (Logne Valley, in the vicinity of the Scott, Renard and Antonia glaciers). We cover meteorological measurements, chemical analysis of sixteen dioxin-like compounds (Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs)), formaldehyde (HCHO), sum parameters of phenolic compounds (∑phenols) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC). The most contaminated with PAH compounds were lakes exposed to the influence of the Greenland Sea (Logne Valley lakes) and to the prevailing winds (Scott and Renard lakes). Interpretation of the PAH compounds results allowed for identification of pyrogenic sources as the main sources of PAH compounds in the year 2012. The highest levels of HCHO and ∑phenols were observed for the Scott lakes, while the highest DOC levels were noted in Antonia lakes. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Changes in the Dynamics and Nature of Sedimentation in Mill Ponds as an Indicator of Environmental Changes in a Selected Lake Catchment (Chełmińskie Lake District, Poland)
Water 2020, 12(1), 268; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12010268 - 17 Jan 2020
Abstract
The article presents the changes in a hydrographic network resulting from the construction and functioning of nine water mills located in the Struga Rychnowska catchment (Poland). Two ponds (Bierzgieł and Oleszek) have been chosen for a detailed study—both with similar basin origins and [...] Read more.
The article presents the changes in a hydrographic network resulting from the construction and functioning of nine water mills located in the Struga Rychnowska catchment (Poland). Two ponds (Bierzgieł and Oleszek) have been chosen for a detailed study—both with similar basin origins and morphological settings, but different morphometries, paths of water delivery and discharges from the mill, and water retention times. An attempt was made to restore the course of the deposit sedimentation process in mill pond basins on the basis of historical sources, archived cartographic materials, fieldwork, and laboratory analyses (sedimentology, palynology, and 14C dating). The studies allowed determining the scope of anthropogenic impact on the environment on the example of small river catchment, both when the ponds were in use, and afterwards. Decommissioning of water mills induced a number of serious changes in water resources. The most important of them include: the loss of water retention capacity in the Struga Rychnowska catchment, and decreased ground water level in immediate vicinity of former water reservoirs. Currently, a renewed interest in the old locations of water mills is present, in order to restore retention, and use them for the purposes of modern small hydropower plants (SHP). Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Examination of Nutrient Sources and Transport in a Catchment with an Audubon Certified Golf Course
Water 2019, 11(9), 1923; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11091923 - 14 Sep 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Water bodies in the East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD), California, United States, provide aesthetic value and critical ecosystem services, but are often adversely affected by the activities and infrastructure of the intensely urban environment that surrounds the parks. EBRPD leases a golf [...] Read more.
Water bodies in the East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD), California, United States, provide aesthetic value and critical ecosystem services, but are often adversely affected by the activities and infrastructure of the intensely urban environment that surrounds the parks. EBRPD leases a golf course (Tilden Golf Course (TGC)) in Tilden Regional Park, one of its most popular parks located in the Berkeley Hills, which was certified as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary in 2013. Nonetheless, application of nutrients and pesticides (fungicides, plant growth regulators and herbicides) are commonly used to maintain turf systems and may be transported via surface runoff or through subsurface drainage to surface waters, leading to the concern that golf courses are a major contributor to water pollution. We studied the possible contribution of nutrients (NO3-N and PO4-P) and pesticides transported via storm-generated surface runoff and via groundwater from TGC to the primary drainage in the watershed, Wildcat Creek. Lake Anza, a popular open water swimming lake, is located downstream from TGC and experiences occasional nutrient-driven algal blooms that have caused swim beach closures. Measured NO3-N and PO4-P in the stream, at times, exceeded concentration limits of 1 mg/L (as N) and 0.05 mg/L (as P), respectively, considered protective of aquatic ecosystems by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (1986). We found that phosphorous likely has a dominant natural source, but nitrogen is primarily derived from a golf course fertilizer source and its concentration increases in the stream during runoff events, while other soluble species decrease. Analyses of pesticides in water reveal the presence of Azoxystrobin in stream water at the golf course, but with concentrations well below the regulatory limit. These results indicate that all other pesticides applied on TGC are not likely transported to the stream, suggesting future reactive transport research must treat contaminant species independently based on their specific transport behaviors. Full article
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