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Identification of sources and transformations of nitrate in the Xijiang River using nitrate isotopes and Bayesian model TEXT SIZE: A A A
Coupled nitrogen and oxygen isotopes of nitrate have proven useful in identifying nitrate sources and transformation in rivers. However, isotopic fractionation and low-resolution monitoring limit the accurate estimation of nitrate dynamics. In the present study, the spatio-temporal variations of nitrate isotopes (N-15 and O-18) and hydrochemical compositions (NO3- and Cl-) of river water were examined to understand nitrate sources in the Xijiang River, China. High-frequency sampling campaigns and isotopic analysis were performed at the mouth of the Xijiang River to capture temporal nitrate variabilities. The overall values of delta N-15-NO3- and delta O-18-NO3- ranged from +4.4% to +14.1% and from -0.3% to +6.8%, respectively. The results of nitrate isotopes indicated that NO3- mainly originated from soil organic nitrogen (SON), chemical fertilizer (CF), and manure and sewage wastes (M&S). The negative correlation of nitrate isotopic valueswith NO3-/Cl- ratios suggested the importance of denitrification in NO3- loss. The results of Bayesianmodel with incorporation of isotopic fractionation during the denitrification showed that SON and CF contributed to the most (72-73%) nitrate in the wet season; whereas approximately 58% of nitrate was derived from anthropogenic inputs (M&S and CF) in the dry season. The nitrate flux was 2.08 x 10(5) tons N yr(-1) during one hydrologic year between 2013 and 2014, with 86% occurring in the wet season. Long-term fluctuations in nitrate flux indicated that nitrate export increased significantly over the past 35 years, and was significantly correlated with nitrate concentrations. The seasonal pattern of nitrate dynamics indicated the mixing of nitrified NO3- and denitrified NO3- between surface flow and groundwater flow under different hydrological conditions. Overall, the present study quantitatively evaluates the spatio-temporal variations in nitrate sources in a subtropical watershed, and the high-frequency monitoring gives a better estimate of nitrate exports and proportional contributions of nitrate sources. (C) 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Publication name

 SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT, 646 801-810; 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.07.345 JAN 1 2018


 Li, Cai; Li, Si-Liang; Yue, Fu-Jun; Liu, Jing; Zhong, Jun; Yan, Zhi-Feng; Zhang, Ruo-Chun; Wang, Zhong-Jun; Xu, Sen

Corresponding author(s) 

 LI Siliang 
 Tianjin Univ, Inst Surface Earth Syst Sci, Tianjin 300072, Peoples R China.

Author(s) from IGCAS   LIU Jing; ZHONG Jun; WANG Zhongjun; XU Sen

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