Historical trends of riverine nitrogen loading from land to the East China Sea: a model-based evaluation

Nishina, K., Ito, A., Zhou, F., Yan, X., Hayashi, S., & Winiwarter, W. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7131-1496 (2021). Historical trends of riverine nitrogen loading from land to the East China Sea: a model-based evaluation. Environmental Research Communications 3 (8) e085005. 10.1088/2515-7620/ac1ce8.

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East Asia is the one of the hotspot regions with too much reactive nitrogen (N) inputs from anthropogenic sources. Here, we evaluated historical total inorganic N (TIN) load from land to sea through the rivers surrounding the East China sea using biogeochemical model 'VISIT' combined with a newly developed VISIT Off-line River Nitrogen scheme (VISIToRN). VISIT calculated N cycling in both natural and agricultural ecosystems and VISIToRN calculated inorganic N transport and riverine denitrification through the river channels at half degree spatial resolution. Between 1961 and 2010, the estimated TIN load from land to the sea surrounding the East China Sea increased from 2.7 Tg-N Year−1 to 5.5 Tg-N Year−1, a twofold increase, while the anthropogenic N input to the East China Sea basin (N deposition, N fertilizer, manure, and human sewage) increased from 12.9 Tg-N Year−1 to 36.9 Tg-N Year−1, an increase of about 3 times. This difference in the rate of increase is due in large part to the terrestrial nitrogen budget, and the results of the model balance indicate that TIN load to rivers has been suppressed by improvements in fertilizer application rates, harvesting on agricultural land, and nitrogen accumulation in forests. The results of the model balance showed that the increase rate of nitrogen runoff from Chinese rivers has been declining since 2000. In our estimation by VISIToRN, the amount of nitrogen removed by river denitrification in the river channel before the mouth is not negligible, ranging from 1.6 Tg-N Year−1 to 2.16 Tg-N Year−1. The N load from agricultural sources is still significant and needs to be further reduced. TIN load tended to increase in years with high precipitation. In order to effectively reduce TIN load, it is necessary to consider climate change-adaptive agricultural N management.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: East China sea; N loading; Non-point source; Point source
Research Programs: Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Pollution Management (PM)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 13 Sep 2021 12:00
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2021 12:00
URI: https://pure.iiasa.ac.at/17430

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