International projects source: SICRIS

Program for the prevention of diffuse water pollution with phosphorus from degraded and re-wetted peat soils

Researchers (1)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publications
1.  00565  PhD Iztok Winkler  Forestry, wood and paper technology  Principal Researcher  2000 - 2003  476 
Organisations (1)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publications
1.  0481  University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty  Ljubljana  1626914  64,492 
Problems to be solvedThe re-wetting and restoration of peat lands (synonym: Histosols) can be accompanied by the mobilisation of phosphorus (P), its transport to adjoining aquatic ecosystems, an accelerated eutrophication and deterioration of water quality. PROWATER is aimed to develop scientifically based guidelines for the use and restoration of Histosols that prevent the diffuse pollution of water with P. It contributes to the community agricultural, environmental, and especially, water policy.Scientific objectives and approachThe main objective of the project is to prevent freshwater from diffuse pollution with P mobilised from Histosols. Specific objectives are to(1) identify the chemical forms of P in native, degraded and re-wetted Histosols,(2) measure and assess the actual P pollution of ground and surface water in six representative field studies,(3) develop models which describe the main factors of P mobilisation and transport from Histosols to water and calculate scenarios for re-wetting strategies, and(4) to develop a user-friendly Decision Support System to enable re-wetting strategies at minimised P input to freshwater. PROWATER is organised in four connected work packages (WPs). In WP 1 the study areas in Israel, Germany, Poland, Sweden and in the U.K. will be characterised, equipped with automated field stations, and a co-ordinated field research and sampling programme will be carried out. In WP 2, the P status of soils will be characterised by advanced analytical methods (total P, P forms by sequential fractionation, nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry, ad/desorption isotherms). The relationships between external factors and P mobilisation will be quantified in microcosm experiments under controlled conditions. The data sets will be used in WP 3 as model input. The quantified relationships between P status, external factors and P mobilisation will improve conceptual models of P transformations in Histosols. Furthermore we will test, validate and adapt existing numerical models of P mobilisation and transport. Reliable scenarios of re-wetting strategies will be simulated and the effects on diffuse P transfer from Histosols to freshwater will be calculated. In WP 4 a Decision Support System for Histosol restoration and sustaining of good water quality will be developed. This requires the integration of scenarios from WP 3 with the ecological, political, and socio-economic targets in study areas, participating countries and the EU. PROWATER will finish with the application and evaluation of the Decision support system in case studies of the consequences of re-wetting measures for end-users and stakeholders.Expected impactsWe expect(1) a data base from field research on factors that control the P mobilisation in re-wetted Histosols,(2) basic new evidence for the chemistry of P in Histosols,(3) models on P mobilisation and transport and re-wetting scenarios,(4) a Decision Support System which is tested with local end-users and stakeholders to provide a basis for the implementation of re-wetting guidelines for the restoration of wetlands. The main environmental and socio-economic impact lies in the improvement of surface water quality, the preservation of agricultural land use in sensitive areas and its development towards landscape conservation, which can be an important income factor in some areas.
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