Saving the Baltic Sea, the Inland Waters of Its Drainage Basin, or Both? Spatial Perspectives on Reducing P-Loads in Eastern Sweden
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Nutrient loads from inland sources to the Baltic Sea and adjacent inland waters need to be reduced in order to prevent eutrophication and meet requirements of the European Water Framework Directive (WFD) and the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP). We here investigate the spatial implications of using different possible criteria for reducing water-borne phosphorous (P) loads in the Northern Baltic Sea River Basin District (NBS-RBD) in Sweden. Results show that most catchments that have a high degree of internal eutrophication do not express high export of P from their outlets. Furthermore, due to lake retention, lake catchments with high P-loads per agricultural area (which is potentially of concern for the WFD) did not considerably contribute to the P-loading of the Baltic Sea. Spatially uniform water quality goals may, therefore, not be effective in NBS-RBD, emphasizing more generally the need for regional adaptation of WFD and BSAP-related goals.
KeywordsWFD HELCOM Catchment Marine Eutrophication Nutrient load
This study was funded by the Ministry of Education and Research and conducted within the Research School for Teachers on Climate Evolution and Water Resources. It was part of the project Ecosystems as common-pool resources: Implication for building sustainable water management institutions in the Baltic Sea region, funded by the Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies. The second author acknowledges support from the strategic research project EkoKlim at Stockholm University.
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