Changes in CO2 dynamics related to rainfall and water level variations in a subtropical lake
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We investigated the implications of low rainfall and reduced water level for changes in nutrients and chlorophyll-a in a subtropical lake, and how these changes affected levels and atmospheric fluxes of CO2. Based on nine consecutive years of monthly monitoring of pH, alkalinity, oxygen, and temperature, we calculated the pCO2 and CO2 flux and related these to environmental drivers. Variations in annual rainfall, with extreme low levels along 2012–2014 caused the water level to decrease up to 1 m. Low water levels were associated with higher concentrations of chlorophyll-a and organic carbon as well as reduced water transparency. Under these conditions, pCO2 increased and the lake was predominantly a source of CO2 to the atmosphere. Applying a generalized linear model, we found that water temperature, water column stability, and water level were linked to pCO2. The influences of predicted regional changes in rainfall associated with low water levels will according to our model further deteriorate the water quality and enhance CO2 emissions from the lake to the atmosphere.
KeywordsRainfall Monitoring, climate changes Water quality Peri Lake
We are grateful to staff from Laboratory of Freshwater Ecology from Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC, www.limnos.ufsc.br) for collaborative efforts related to the samplings. We thank the ICEA (Instituto de Controle do Espaço Aéreo) and CASAN (Companhia Catarinense de Água e Esgoto) for providing rainfall and water level data, respectively. We thank the FLORAM (Fundação Municipal do Meio Ambiente de Florianópolis), LAPAD – UFSC (Laboratório de Biologia e Cultivo de Peixes de Água Doce) and the PPGECO – UFSC (Programa de pós-graduação em Ecologia) for providing assistance for field and laboratory equipments. We also would like to thank Eduardo Giehl for the help with statistical analyses, Izidro Souza-Filho for helping to improve the figure 1 and three anonymous reviewers who provided insights on an earlier version of the manuscript. This study was funded by CNPq (Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico) and the first author was supported by CAPES (Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior) and COCLake Project (No. 88881.030499/2013-01).
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