A chemical, biological, and isotopic analysis of the spatial extent of the wastewater effluent on rivers in southern Alberta, Canada
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractChemical, biological, and stable isotope analyses were used simultaneously to track the spatial recovery of rivers from wastewater nutrient enrichment in the Bow and Red Deer Rivers of southern Alberta, Canada during the summers of 2002 and 2003. Exponential models assessed how far downstream it took the rivers to recover to prewastewater conditions. The Red Deer River recovered from nutrient enrichment~ 36, 29, and 70 km downstream according to nutrient concentrations, autotroph biomass and stable isotope values respectively. The Bow River recovered~ 192, 52 and 176 km downstream according to nutrient concentrations, autotroph biomass and stable isotope values. High spatial and temporal variability characterized many indicators. The integration of stable isotopes and autotroph biomass suggests that wastewater alters river food webs. Autotroph biomass and N isotopic composition provided the most timeintegrated measure of conditions and generally displayed the most consistent recovery patterns with distance from the enrichment source.
Bibliography: p. 154-179