, Volume 57, Issue 1, pp 405–427 | Cite as

Regional nitrogen budgets for China and its major watersheds

  • G.X. Xing
  • Z.L. Zhu


Since the Changjiang River, Huanghe River and Zhujiang River are the three major rivers in China that are flowing into the Pacific Ocean, this paper addresses nitrogen budgeting, source (input) and sink (output and storage), in these three river valleys, and the China watershed as well. In the China watershed, the anthropogenic reactive N has far exceeded the terrestrial bio-fixed N in nature, and human activities have significantly altered the N cycling in this region. In 1995, the total amount of anthropogenic reactive N in China reached 31.2 Tg with 22.2 Tg coming from synthetic fertilizers and 4.18 Tg from NOx emission from fossil fuel combustion, and the input of recycling N amounted to 30.5 Tg, consisting mainly of human and animal excrement N, reflecting the intensity of the human activity. The sink of N includes N in the harvested crop, denitrification and storage in agricultural soils, transportation into waterbodies and volatilization of NH3. N output and storage in soil reached up to 48–53 Tg. Of this amount, 14 Tg was in the harvested crops, 12 Tg stored in agricultural soils, 11 Tg transported into waterbodies, 5 – 10 Tg denitrified in the soils and a limited amount exported through food/feed.

In this paper – besides the N budget in the China watershed – the N budgets and especially N transports into waterbodies in the Changjiang, Huanghe and Zhujiang river valleys are estimated.

analysis and estimation China watershed major river valley nitrogen budgeting 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • G.X. Xing
    • 1
  • Z.L. Zhu
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Soil ScienceChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingP.R. China

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