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Chemical characteristics and temporal trends in eight streams of the Catskill Mountains, New York

Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

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DOI: 10.1007/BF00478154

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Abstract

Discharge to concentration relationships for eight streams studied by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) as part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (U.S. EPA) Long-Term Monitoring Project (1983-89) indicate acidification of some streams by H2SO4 and HNO3 in atmospheric deposition and by organic acids in soils. Concentrations of major ions in precipitation were similar to those reported at other sites in the northeastern United States. Average concentrations of SO42- and NO3- were similar among streams, but base cation concentrations differed widely, and these differences paralleled the differences in acid neutralizing capacity (ANC). Baseflow ANC is not a reliable predictor of stream acidity at high flow; some streams with high baseflow ANC (> 150 ??eq L-1) declined to near zero ANC at high flow, and one stream with low baseflow ANC (< 50 ??eq L-1) did not approach zero ANC as flow increased. Episodic decreases in ANC and pH during peak flows were associated with increased concentrations of NO3- and dissolved organic carbon (DOC). Aluminum concentrations exceeding 300 ??g L-1 were observed during peak flows in headwater streams of the Neversink River and Rondout Creek. Seasonal Kendall Tau tests for temporal trends indicate that SO42- concentrations in streamwater generally decreased and NO3- concentrations increased during the period 1983-1989. Combined acid anion concentrations (SO42- + NO3-) were generally unchanged throughout the period of record, indicating both that the status of these streams with respect to acidic deposition is unchanged, and that NO3- is gradually replacing SO42- as the dominant acid anion in the Catskill streams.Discharge to concentration relationships for eight streams studied by the US Geological Survey (USGS) as part of the Environmental Protection Agency's (US EPA) Long-term monitoring project (19831-89) indicate acidification of some streams by H2SO4 and HNO3 in atmospheric deposition and by organic acids in soils. Concentrations of major ions in precipitations were similar to those reported at other sites in the northeastern United States. Average concentrations of SO42- and No3- were similar among streams, but base cation concentrations differed widely, and these differences parallelel the differences in acid neutralizing capacity (ANC).

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Chemical characteristics and temporal trends in eight streams of the Catskill Mountains, New York
Series title:
Water, Air, and Soil Pollution
DOI:
10.1007/BF00478154
Volume
67
Issue:
3-4
Year Published:
1993
Language:
English
Publisher:
Springer
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Water, Air, and Soil Pollution
First page:
367
Last page:
395
Number of Pages:
29