Recovery of acidified mountain lakes in Norway as predicted by the MAGIC model

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Richard F. WRIGHT *
Bernard J. COSBY
(*) Corresponding Author:
Richard F. WRIGHT | richard.wright@niva.no

Abstract

As part of the EU project EMERGE the biogeochemical model MAGIC was used to reconstruct acidification history and predict future recovery for mountain lakes in two regions of Norway. Central Norway (19 lakes) receives low levels of acid deposition, most of the lakes have undergone only minor amounts of acidification, and all are predicted to recover in the future. Central Norway thus represents a reference area for more polluted regions in southern Norway and elsewhere in Europe. Southern Norway (23 lakes), on the other hand, receives higher levels of acid deposition, nearly all the studied lakes were acidified and had lost fish populations, and although some recovery has occurred during the period 1980-2000 and additional recovery is predicted for the next decades, the model simulations indicated that the majority of the lakes will not achieve water quality sufficient to support trout populations. Uncertainties in these predictions include possible future N saturation and the exacerbating effects of climate change. The mountain lakes of southern Norway are among the most sensitive in Europe. For southern Norway additional measures such as stricter controls of emissions of air pollutants will be required to obtain satisfactory water quality in the future.

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