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The history of phosphorus, sediment and metal loadings to Lake Simcoe from lake sediment records

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Title: The history of phosphorus, sediment and metal loadings to Lake Simcoe from lake sediment records
Author: Johnson, M. J.; Nicholls, K. H.
Abstract: Metal loads to sediments of Lake Simcoe were partitioned into three components, which were attributable to natural background, accelerated erosion, and point + atmospheric sources. These loads were calculated over time using metal concentration profiles together with pre-settlement sedimentation rates based on sonar and time-variable sedimentation rates based on 210 Po profiles in cores. Concentrations of metals significantly higher than pre-settlement concentrations were observed in all cores in the case of Pb, back to 80 yr BP on average, and in at least 75% of cores, back to 60 yr BP for Cd and Zn and 30 to 45 yr BP for Cu, Ni, and Cr. Total metal loads increased 3 x for Cu and Ni, 4 x for Zn and Cr, 11 x for Cd and nearly 20 x for Pb from pre-1800 to 0 to 10 yr BP. At present about 90% of the anthropogenic loads of Pb and Cd, and 60 to 70% of the anthropogenic Cu, Ni, Zn, and Cr, are from point + atmospheric sources, the balance being from increased erosion. The direct atmospheric input of Cd is relatively high, approximately 77% of point + atmospheric inputs, while inputs of Cr and Ni are low at 1% and 9%, and inputs of Cu, Zn, and Pb are intermediate at 20 to 40% of point + atmospheric inputs. Two significant findings on spatial distribution of metals were the large increases in metal loads to Cook's Bay following the drainage of 33 km2 of marshes for agricultural use and the widespread dispersal of Cr from point source(s) in Kempenfelt Bay.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/14031
Date: 1992
Rights: Queen's Printer for Ontario, Crown Copyright, Non-Commercial Use Permitted
Rights Holder: Queen's Printer for Ontario


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