SciOly Marine Water Quality 2014
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What is eutrophication?
the excessive richness of nutrients in a body of water, frequently due to runoff from the land, which causes a dense growth of plant life and death of animal life from lack of oxygen.
What is another name for eutrophication?
What are the 3 most troubling impacts of eutrophication?
- 1.Decreased biodiversity
- 2.Changes in species composition/dominance
- 3.Toxicity effects.
What are some of the negative environmental effects of eutrophication?
- Phytoplankton "bloom"
- Hypoxia - depletion of oxygen in the water
- Reduction/increase in specific fish & animals population
_____ is more commonly the key limiting nutrient of marine waters involved in eutrophication.
In the marine environment _____ tend to be naturally eutrophic because land-derived nutrients are concentrated where run-off enters a confined channel. _________ in coastal systems also promotes increased productivity by conveying deep, nutrient-rich waters to the surface, where the nutrients can be assimilated by algae.
- Estuaries are naturally eutrophic
- Upwelling promotes increased productivity
What are some of the many negative ecological impacts of eutrophication?
- Increased biomass of phytoplankton
- Toxic or inedible phytoplankton species
- Increases in blooms of gelatinous zooplankton
- Increased biomass of benthic algae
- Increased turbidity
- Colour, smell, and water treatment problems Dissolved oxygen depletion
- Increased incidences of fish kills
- Loss of desirable fish species
- Reductions in harvestable fish and shellfish
_____ microbes use oxygen to oxidize the organic matter in the water.
Aerobic microbes use oxygen to oxidize the organic matter in the water.
How is BOD tested?
BOD is tested using the maters for testing dissolved oxygen but the test is done over a period of time to determine the rate of oxygen being used.
What do the total solids of the water measure?
The total solids of the water measures the suspended and dissolved solids in the body of water
What are some examples of suspended solids and are they retained or do they pass through a water filter?
Some examples of suspended solids are silt, clay, plankton, organic wastes, and inorganic precipitates. They are retained on a water filter.
Dissolved solids pass through a water filter and include what types of materials?
calcium, bicarbonate, nitrogen, phosphorus, iron, and sulfur and other ions in the water.
Why are dissolved solids important for aquatic life?
Many of the dissolved solids (nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur) are essential nutrients for aquatic life.
How do low concentrations of total solids impact aquatic organisms? What do elevated levels of total solids in the water system lead to?
Low concentrations of total solids can limit growth of aquatic organisms, while elevated levels can lead to accelerated eutrophication of the water system and increase the turbidity of the water.
What are the consequences of low concentrations of total solids, as well as elevated levels of the water system?
Both of these consequences decrease the overall water quality of the water.
What are some of the sources of elevated levels of total solids?
Sources of elevated levels of total solids include runoff from agricultural activities, dredging, mining, salt from streets in winter, fertilizers from lawns, water treatment plants, plant materials, soil particles and soil erosion, and decaying organic matter.
What are some of the effects of high concentrations of suspended solids?
High concentrations of suspended solids can reduce water clarity, increase turbidity, reduce photosynthesis levels by reducing the sunlight that reaches plants, increase water temperature due to increased absorption of light at the water surface, and bind with toxic chemicals or heavy metals.
When Fecal Coliform counts are over ___ colonies/100 mL of sample water, there is a _______ chance of pathogenic organisms being present.
When Fecal Coliform counts are over 200 colonies/100 mL of sample water, there is a greater chance of pathogenic organisms being present.
Water with high levels of fecal coliform bacteria are associated with the following 4 diseases:
- Typhoid Fever
The 3 primary sources of Fecal Coliform bacteria are from:
- failing/leaking septic systems
- animal waste
- discharge from a water treatment plant
Urbanization can also cause problems with fecal coliform bacteria levels because _____
plant and animal wastes can be washed away by a storm into sewers and contaminate water
Temperature change can be caused by 4 main things:
- 1.natural seasonal changes
- 2.anthropogenic activities
- 3.industrial thermal pollution as discharge of cooling water
- 4.storm water runoff from heated surfaces like streets
Air is about 21% oxygen which is ______ ppm
Most surface waters contain between __ and __ ppm of dissolved oxygen.
They contain between 5 and 15 ppm.
Below __ ppm of dissolved oxygen, then that can put aquatic life under stress, and below __ - __ ppm for a few hours can kill large fish.
Below 5 ppm can cause stress and between 1-2 ppm can kill large fish within a few hours
Total dissolved oxygen levels should not be greater than ___% at any point.
The primary reasons for a fluctuation in the amount of DO because of humans are ______ and ______
dumping and sediment erosion
How does the presence of algal blooms impact DO through the night?
When algal blooms are present, they can cause large fluctuations in DO through the night especially in areas where there is not much current for aeration.
_______ is oxidized to form nitrates.
Ammonia is oxidized to form nitrates.
Nitrates, like phosphates, are tested in _____.
Parts Per Million (ppm)
Some human sources that can add to the total amount of nitrate in the water are
- poorly functioning septic tanks
- inadequately treated waste water from sewage treatment plants
- manure from farm livestock
- animal wastes including fish and birds
- car exhausts
- storm drains
- runoff from crop fields, parks, lawns, and feedlots
Phosphates are able to enter waterways in a variety of natural ways such as :
rocks or normal animal and plant waste in the water
Some human sources for phosphates that can increase the amount of phosphates in the water are:
- industrial & cleaning compounds
- septic tanks
- wastewater from sewage treatment
What is alkalinity?
Alkalinity is the ability of a solution to neutralize an acid
There are several ions that contribute to alkalinity, including :
Does limestone contribute to alkalinity?
Yes, limestone contributes to alkalinity, since its formula is calcium carbonate [CaCO3], and carbonate is one of the ions that contribute to alkalinity.
pH is a ____________ scale that ranges from __ to __ meaning that a solution with a pH of 5 has __ times the concentration of hydrogen ions as a solution with a pH of 6.
It is a logarithmic scale that ranges from 0 to 14, meaning that a solution with a pH of 5 has 10 times the concentration of hydrogen ions as a solution with a pH of 6.
Why is pH is an important water quality indicator?
pH is an importantw water quality indicator because organisms can only tolerate water that is not too acidic nor too basic.
The normal pH of water sources in the United States is 6.5 to 8.5, and values between ___ and ___ can support life for fish and invertebrates.
Values between 6.0 and 9.0 can support life for fish and invertebrates.
Why is acid rain an important factor in Water Quality? At what point do we see negative effects begin to appear from changing pH values?
Acid rain is an important factor in water quality, since it will make water more acidic. Once the pH value approaches 6.0, negative effects begin to appear.
What natural environmental landforms of an area can also affect pH levels?
Limestone is a base when dissolved in water, so it can neutralize the effects of acids. Volcanoes, geysers, and hot springs will make water more acidic, as well as the presence of sulfur in nearby minerals.
How is salinity measured?
Salinity is measured by dissolved salts in parts per thousand (ppt)
What is the ppt of fresh water, brackish water, saline, and brine?
- Fresh water has a ppt of <0.5
- Brackish water has a ppt between 0.5 and 30
- Saline water has a ppt between 30 to 50
- Brine has a ppt of >50
What does a ppt of <0.5 mean?
A ppt of <0.5 means that there are 0.5 molecules of dissolved salt for every 1000 molecules of solution, or 1 molecule of salt per every 2000 molecules of solution.
Salinometers are based on the principles of ______ and ______?
Salinometers are based on the principles of density and buoyancy.
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