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  Estonian Journal of Earth Sciences

ISSN 1736-7557 (electronic)  ISSN 1736-4728 (print)
An international scientific journal

Formerly: Proceedings of the Estonian Academy of Sciences, Geology
Published since 1952

Estonian Journal of Earth Sciences

ISSN 1736-7557 (electronic)  ISSN 1736-4728 (print)
An international scientific journal

Formerly: Proceedings of the Estonian Academy of Sciences, Geology
Published since 1952

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Assessment of the effect of anthropogenic pollution on the ecology of small shallow lakes using the palaeolimnological approach; pp. 221–233

(Full article in PDF format) doi: 10.3176/earth.2016.19


Authors

Tiiu Koff, Egert Vandel, Agáta Marzecová, Egle Avi, Annika Mikomägi

Abstract

Palaeolimnological techniques were utilized to determine the extent of the effect of anthropogenic pollutants or other environmental stressors on three lake ecosystems over the last 200 years. The ecology of the study sites has experienced significant changes due to various activities such as (1) extensive catchment drainage and using poisoning as a fish management measure, (2) seepage of urban waste water due to establishment and growth of a town and (3) artificial inflow of oil-shale mining waters. Sediment geochemical composition, fossil pigments and Cladocera remains from the sediment cores were analysed to demonstrate that sufficient information can be derived from sediments to permit a historical reconstruction. The integrated use of archival maps, historical records and lake monitoring data confirmed links to anthropogenic pollutants, primarily on the catchment level. The examples show how the sediment indicators provide unique insights into the causes and temporal dynamics of lake ecosystem changes relevant for environmental management decisions. This study demonstrates that palaeolimnology has great potential to assist in eutrophication assessment and management efforts in waterbodies.

Keywords

Cladocera, environmental management, geochemistry, lake sediments, palaeorecords, pigments.

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