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Pilot watershed studies - Summary report

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Title: Pilot watershed studies - Summary report
Author: Chesters, Gordon; Robinson, John; Stiefel, Robert; Ostry, Robert; Bahr, Thomas; Coote, D. Richard; Whitt, Darnell M.
Abstract: Pilot watershed studies were undertaken in six major drainage basins in the Great Lakes basin, in eleven smaller agricultural watersheds in southern Ontario, in one forested watershed area in northern Ontario, west of the Lake Superior basin, and at a few other locations where specific sources of contaminants were evaluated. The pilot watersheds were selected to represent major land use activities, geology, and climatic conditions. Studies were undertaken to determine contaminants being produced from urban, agricultural, and forested land uses and special land-use activities such as orchards, private waste disposal systems, and spray irrigation of municipal sewage effluents. In addition, investigations into the effects of streambank erosion on water quality were conducted in each country. The results of studies of particular land uses and management practices, and pollutant generation, transport and reaction processes are contained in detailed reports by individual investigators or groups of investigators. They are published in either the PLUARG technical report series or as reports of the funding agencies. Combined, they provide a wealth of information on diffuse sources of pollutants and the processes affecting them. To strengthen co-ordination and provide a means for reviewing the major results from the watershed studies, Task C established a Synthesis and Extrapolation Work Group (SEWG) in 1976. The members of the Synthesis and Extrapolation Work Group, supported by the efforts of several investigators who accepted the task of integrating results on agricultural sources of pollutants, prepared this Task C Summary Report. It highlights the findings, shows the range of effects and causes of variations in pollutant loadings, and provides maps showing the results of extrapolation of loading information for suspended sediment, total phosphorus, and total nitrogen contributed by agricultural and urban land uses. In the report, they describe other contaminants such as organic toxicants, metals, and micro-organisms and go on to present principles, factors and practices needed in considering and implementing remedial and preventative measures to reduce diffuse sources of pollutants. Unit area loadings derived for the major land uses and an evaluation of the factors which influence these loads were used in developing the priority management concept discussed in the PLUARG Final Report.
Date: 1978
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Rights Holder: International Joint Commission
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