David, Shilly E., Chattopadhyay, Mahamaya, Chattopadhyay, Srikumar and Jennerjahn, Tim C. (2016) Impact of human interventions on nutrient biogeochemistry in the Pamba River, Kerala, India. Science of The Total Environment, 541 . pp. 1420-1430. DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.09.092.

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Abstract

Anthropogenic inputs nowadays are the major source of nutrients to the coastal area. While a wealth of data exists from high latitude regions, little is known on the amount and composition of nutrient fluxes from densely populated tropical catchments. The South Indian Pamba River is a prime example in this respect because of its manifold human interventions such as the Sabarimala pilgrimage, the largest pilgrim centre in the world and agricultural practices. In order (i) to identify direct cause-effect relationships, (ii) to quantify land use specific nutrient inputs and (iii) to assess the respective impacts water was sampled along the river course during the pre monsoon, south west monsoon and north east monsoon periods in 2010 to 2012. Sampling segments were chosen according to prevailing land use. A socioeconomic survey on agricultural practices was conducted to collect information on the type, time and quantity of fertilizer application.

Our results indicate (i) little human activities in the forest segment resulted in a low nutrient yield; (ii) pilgrim activities led to high ammonium and phosphate yields in the temple segment; (iii) specific fertilizer management resulted in moderate and maximum nitrate yields in the respective agriculture segments. Annual NPK fertilizer inputs to the catchment were 95 kg ha− 1 yr− 1.The average yield for the Pamba River catchment amounted to 3.5 kg ha− 1 yr− 1 of DIN and 0.2 kg ha− 1 yr− 1 of phosphate-P. As opposing predictions for densely-populated regions the N and P yields of the Pamba River are moderate to low on a global scale. It highlights the need for land use specific quantitative estimates from tropical regions in order to improve the global database and local water quality management.

Document Type: Article
Research affiliation: Biogeochemistry and Geology > Ecological Biogeochemistry
Affiliations > Not ZMT
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.09.092
ISSN: 00489697
Date Deposited: 08 Jul 2019 14:23
Last Modified: 01 Oct 2020 12:59
URI: http://cris.leibniz-zmt.de/id/eprint/2273

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