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Effects of wastewater treatment plant effluent inputs on planktonic metabolic rates and microbial community composition in the Baltic Sea

Vaquer-Sunyer, Raquel LU ; Reader, Heather E. LU ; Muthusamy, Saraladevi; Lindh, Markus V.; Pinhassi, Jarone; Conley, Daniel J. LU and Kritzberg, Emma S. LU (2016) In Biogeosciences 13(16). p.4751-4765
Abstract

The Baltic Sea is the world's largest area suffering from eutrophication-driven hypoxia. Low oxygen levels are threatening its biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. The main causes for eutrophication-driven hypoxia are high nutrient loadings and global warming. Wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) contribute to eutrophication as they are important sources of nitrogen to coastal areas. Here, we evaluated the effects of wastewater treatment plant effluent inputs on Baltic Sea planktonic communities in four experiments. We tested for effects of effluent inputs on chlorophyll a content, bacterial community composition, and metabolic rates: gross primary production (GPP), net community production (NCP), community respiration (CR) and... (More)

The Baltic Sea is the world's largest area suffering from eutrophication-driven hypoxia. Low oxygen levels are threatening its biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. The main causes for eutrophication-driven hypoxia are high nutrient loadings and global warming. Wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) contribute to eutrophication as they are important sources of nitrogen to coastal areas. Here, we evaluated the effects of wastewater treatment plant effluent inputs on Baltic Sea planktonic communities in four experiments. We tested for effects of effluent inputs on chlorophyll a content, bacterial community composition, and metabolic rates: gross primary production (GPP), net community production (NCP), community respiration (CR) and bacterial production (BP). Nitrogen-rich dissolved organic matter (DOM) inputs from effluents increased bacterial production and decreased primary production and community respiration. Nutrient amendments and seasonally variable environmental conditions lead to lower alpha-diversity and shifts in bacterial community composition (e.g. increased abundance of a few cyanobacterial populations in the summer experiment), concomitant with changes in metabolic rates. An increase in BP and decrease in CR could be caused by high lability of the DOM that can support secondary bacterial production, without an increase in respiration. Increases in bacterial production and simultaneous decreases of primary production lead to more carbon being consumed in the microbial loop, and may shift the ecosystem towards heterotrophy.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Biogeosciences
volume
13
issue
16
pages
15 pages
publisher
Copernicus Publications
external identifiers
  • scopus:84983801370
  • wos:000383799000003
ISSN
1726-4170
DOI
10.5194/bg-13-4751-2016
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
acaa5054-9672-4b51-931f-301ff92e0374
date added to LUP
2016-12-02 13:58:30
date last changed
2017-10-22 05:22:55
@article{acaa5054-9672-4b51-931f-301ff92e0374,
  abstract     = {<p>The Baltic Sea is the world's largest area suffering from eutrophication-driven hypoxia. Low oxygen levels are threatening its biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. The main causes for eutrophication-driven hypoxia are high nutrient loadings and global warming. Wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) contribute to eutrophication as they are important sources of nitrogen to coastal areas. Here, we evaluated the effects of wastewater treatment plant effluent inputs on Baltic Sea planktonic communities in four experiments. We tested for effects of effluent inputs on chlorophyll a content, bacterial community composition, and metabolic rates: gross primary production (GPP), net community production (NCP), community respiration (CR) and bacterial production (BP). Nitrogen-rich dissolved organic matter (DOM) inputs from effluents increased bacterial production and decreased primary production and community respiration. Nutrient amendments and seasonally variable environmental conditions lead to lower alpha-diversity and shifts in bacterial community composition (e.g. increased abundance of a few cyanobacterial populations in the summer experiment), concomitant with changes in metabolic rates. An increase in BP and decrease in CR could be caused by high lability of the DOM that can support secondary bacterial production, without an increase in respiration. Increases in bacterial production and simultaneous decreases of primary production lead to more carbon being consumed in the microbial loop, and may shift the ecosystem towards heterotrophy.</p>},
  author       = {Vaquer-Sunyer, Raquel and Reader, Heather E. and Muthusamy, Saraladevi and Lindh, Markus V. and Pinhassi, Jarone and Conley, Daniel J. and Kritzberg, Emma S.},
  issn         = {1726-4170},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {08},
  number       = {16},
  pages        = {4751--4765},
  publisher    = {Copernicus Publications},
  series       = {Biogeosciences},
  title        = {Effects of wastewater treatment plant effluent inputs on planktonic metabolic rates and microbial community composition in the Baltic Sea},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.5194/bg-13-4751-2016},
  volume       = {13},
  year         = {2016},
}