Environmental Chemistry Environmental Chemistry Society
Environmental problems - Chemical approaches
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Release of reactive phosphorus from sediments in Dongting Lake linked with the Yangtze River

Tao Liang A B , Yali Tong A B , Xiahui Wang C and Lingqing Wang A B D

A Key Laboratory of Land-Surface Pattern and Simulation, Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China.

B University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China.

C Chinese Academy for Environmental Planning, Beijing 100012, China.

D Corresponding author. Email: wanglq@igsnrr.ac.cn

Environmental Chemistry - https://doi.org/10.1071/EN16072
Submitted: 20 September 2015  Accepted: 28 August 2016   Published online: 22 September 2016

Environmental context. Eutrophication caused by excessive inputs of phosphorus is a prevalent global environmental problem. Reactive phosphorus released from sediments was measured by two new in situ passive sampling techniques capable of high-resolution measurements of phosphorus concentration. The methods provide the scientific evidence for solving the problems associated with deteriorating surface water quality.

Abstract. Internal phosphorus (P) loading is regarded as a major eutrophication factor and may prevent improvements in lake water quality. Two new in situ passive sampling techniques, high-resolution pore-water equilibrators (HR-Peeper) and zirconium oxide-based diffusive gradients in thin films (Zr-oxide DGT), were combined to measure dissolved reactive phosphorus (DRP) (CPeeper) and labile phosphorus (CDGT) at five sites in South Dongting and West Dongting Lakes. The vertical distribution of CPeeper and CDGT displayed similarity, which demonstrated that the buffering capacity of the labile P in sediments was similar at different depths. The diffusion flux of P from the sediments at the sediment–water interface ranged from 1.9 to 88 ng m–2 day–1, with an average value of 38 ng m–2 day–1. The P flux at the entrances to the Yuan, Li and Zi Rivers was fairly large at all five sites. The sediments at the five sites released P into overlying water, indicating that the sediments are an important source of P for Dongting Lake.

Additional keywords: diffusion flux, dissolved reactive phosphorous (DRP), high-resolution pore water equilibrators (HR-Peeper), labile phosphorus, zirconium oxide-based diffusive gradients in thin films (Zr-oxide-DGT).


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