Sub-recent nitrogen-isotope trends in sediments from skagerrak (North sea) and kattegat: Changes in N-budgets and N-sources?

Dahnke, K., Serna, A., Blanz, T. and Emeis, K. C. (2008) Sub-recent nitrogen-isotope trends in sediments from skagerrak (North sea) and kattegat: Changes in N-budgets and N-sources? Marine Geology, 253 (3-4). pp. 92-98. DOI 10.1016/j.margeo.2008.04.017.

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Abstract

We determined (15)N/(14)N ratios of total nitrogen in surface sediments and dated sediment cores to reconstruct the history of N-loading of the North Sea. The isotopic N composition in modern Surface sediments is equivalent to and reflects the isotopic mixture of oceanic nitrate on the one hand (delta(15)N=5 parts per thousand) and the imprint of river-borne nitrogen input into the SE North Sea (delta(15)N up to 12 parts per thousand in estuaries of the SE North Sea) on the other hand. We compare the results with 615 N records from pre-industrial sediment intervals in cores from the Skagerrak and Kattegat areas, which both constitute significant depositional centres for N in the North Sea and the Baltic Sea/North Sea transition. As expected, isotopically enriched anthropogenic nitrogen was found in the two records from the Kattegat area, which is close to eutrophication sources on land. Enrichment of delta(15)N in cores from the Skagerrak - the largest sediment sink for nitrogen in the entire North Sea - was not significant and values were similar to those found in sediment layers representing pre-industrial conditions. We interpret this isotopic uniformity as an indication that most riverine reactive nitrogen with its characteristic isotopic signature is removed by denitrification in shallow shallow-water sediments before reaching the main sedimentary basin of the North Sea. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: North Sea Skagerrak Kattegat eutrophication nitrogen isotopes sediments anaerobic ammonium oxidation baltic sea atlantic-ocean coastal eutrophication marine-sediments suspended matter transport nitrate phosphorus nutrients
Research affiliation: Kiel University
Refereed: No
DOI etc.: 10.1016/j.margeo.2008.04.017
ISSN: 0025-3227
Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2012 05:25
Last Modified: 09 Oct 2012 03:56
URI: http://eprints.uni-kiel.de/id/eprint/15832

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