GIS-based assessment and management of nitrogen and phosphorus in Rönneå River Catchment, Sweden
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
, p. 457-466
University of Antwerp
Eutrophication in lakes, estuaries and rivers occur due to over-enrichment with nutrients. Amongst the various nutrients Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorous (P) are the elements which are considered as the major pollutants. The present study looks into the problem of managing nutrient losses both from point sources and diffuse sources. The study was carried out in the River Rönneå catchment in South of Sweden where N and P have been assessed by creation of a pollution inventory based on GIS technology. The nutrient loads from different land use types were estimated using export coefficients and evaluated using monitoring data. A comparative analysis is done on the measured and estimated N and P leaching from diffused sources and point sources. Protective zones were suggested to decrease the P export from agricultural land, and the distribution of construction cost was analyzed among administrative regions according to the proportion of catchments, cultivated land, nutrient leaching, protective zone and length of river section within each municipality. The estimated error of the nutrient amount from landuse using GIS is 9.75% and 12.71% for N and P, respectively. The diffused sources contribute 91.53% and 94.74% of the total N and total P respectively, so the creation of a protective zone could be an effective way to decrease the nutrient export. The study demonstrates the power of GIS as a tool to analyze problems related to environmental monitoring and planning at administrative level, which could help in decision making and support for better management of the water resources.