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The influence of sediment resuspension on the water quality of shallow lakes is well documented. However, a search of the literature reveals no deterministic mass-balance eutrophication models that explicitly include resuspension. We modified the Lake Okeeehobee water quality model - which uses the Water Analysis Simulation Package (WASP) to simulate algal dynamics and phosphorus, nitrogen, and oxygen cycles - to include inorganic suspended solids and algorithms that: (1) define changes in depth with changes in volume; (2) compute sediment resuspension based on bottom shear stress; (3) compute partition coefficients for ammonia and ortho-phosphorus to solids; and (4) relate light attenuation to solids concentrations. The model calibration and validation were successful with the exception of dissolved inorganic nitrogen species which did not correspond well to observed data in the validation phase. This could be attributed to an inaccurate formulation of algal nitrogen preference and/or the absence of nitrogen fixation in the model. The model correctly predicted that the lake is lightlimited from resuspended solids, and algae are primarily nitrogen limited. The model simulation suggested that biological fluxes greatly exceed external loads of dissolved nutrients; and sedimentwater interactions of organic nitrogen and phosphorus far exceed external loads. A sensitivity analysis demonstrated that parameters affecting resuspension, settling, sediment nutrient and solids concentrations, mineralization, algal productivity, and algal stoichiometry are factors requiring further study to improve our understanding of the Lake Okeechobee ecosystem.
Additional Publication Details
A sediment resuspension and water quality model of Lake Okeechobee
Journal of the American Water Resources Association