, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 11–20 | Cite as

Further quantifying the fluxes and contributions of sources to modern sediment in Lake Qinghai, NE Tibetan Plateau

  • Dejun Wan
  • Zhangdong JinEmail author
  • Fei Zhang
  • Hongyun Chen
  • Liumei Chen
  • Lei Song
  • Chao Song
Research paper


Faithfully tracing sources of sediment and then quantifying the flux of each source are the first-order basis for reconstructing paleoclimate and paleoenvironment using lake sediments. The budget of various sources contributing to lake sediment in Lake Qinghai, the largest lake on the Tibetan Plateau, is controversial. In the previous study, the flux of the dust deposition to the modern lake sediment was obtained through 2-year observations, but estimations of other sources have some uncertainties due to inadequate data. In this study our new estimations for the modern Lake Qinghai sediment using new measured data show (1) that contribution (22.1 ± 5.2 %) of the fluvial particulate matter is of second significance, only about one-third of the dust deposition, to the modern lake sediment, when its quick deposition near river mouths is not considered, (2) that lacustrine organisms contribute only 5.2 ± 1.1 % of the sediment, but account for ~70 % of the organic matter in sediment, and (3) that authigenic carbonates contribute 21.0 ± 8.6 % of the sediment and 63.6 % of the total carbonates in the lake sediment, respectively, which is due to a direct precipitation of both Ca2+ and Mg2+ in the modern Ca2+-limited lake. These quantifications are instructive to understand the particulate fluxes to sediment pools in Lake Qinghai under the present conditions and to reconstruct paleoclimate and paleoenvironment via physical and geochemical proxies using past sediments.


Suspended particulate matter Lacustrine organisms Authigenic carbonates Lake Qinghai sediment 



This work was financially supported by National Basic Research Program of China (2013CB956402), National Natural Science Foundation of China through grant 41225015, Opening Foundation of State Key Laboratory of Loess and Quaternary Geology (SKLLQG1318), and by Basic Research Program (SK201309 and SK201404) of Institute of Hydrogeology and Environmental Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences. The authors especially thank Mr. Shi Yuewei, Qi Rugui and Qiu Xinning at the Buha River hydrological station, Mrs. Hu Wenli and Mr. Wu Yuanxiang at the Gangcha hydrological station, and He Maoyong, Zhou Ling, Wang Jin and Xiao Jun at IEECAS for their assistance with sample collection and analyses.


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Limnology 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dejun Wan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Zhangdong Jin
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Fei Zhang
    • 2
  • Hongyun Chen
    • 1
  • Liumei Chen
    • 2
  • Lei Song
    • 1
  • Chao Song
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Hydrogeology and Environmental GeologyChinese Academy of Geological SciencesShijiazhuangChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Loess and Quaternary Geology, Institute of Earth EnvironmentChinese Academy of SciencesXi’anChina
  3. 3.Institute of Global Environmental ChangeXi’an Jiaotong UniversityXi’anChina

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