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TitleA study of the nitrogen cycle of the Wilmot River watershed, Prince Edward Island: initial results
AuthorSavard, M MORCID logo; Simpson, S; Smirnoff, AORCID logo; Paradis, DORCID logo; Somers, G; van Bochove, E; Thériault, G
SourceGéoQuébec 2004 : Comptes rendus, 57ième Congrès canadien de géotechnique/5ième Congrès conjoint SCG/AIH-CNN/GeoQuebec 2004/Proceedings, 57th Canadian Geotechnical Conference 57th Annual Meeting/5th Joint CGS/IAH-CNC Conference; 2004 p. 20-27
Alt SeriesGeological Survey of Canada, Contribution Series 2004027
MeetingGéoQuébec 2004 : 57ième Congrès canadien de géotechnique/5ième Congrès conjoint SCG/AIH-CNN--GeoQuebec 2004: 57th Canadian Geotechnical Conference 57th Annual Meeting/5th Joint CGS/IAH-CNC Conference; Québec, QC; CA; October 25-27, 2005
MediaCD-ROM; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvincePrince Edward Island
NTS11L; 21I/08; 21I/09; 21I/16; 21P/01
Lat/Long WENS -64.5000 -62.0000 47.2500 46.0000
Subjectsenvironmental geology; hydrogeology; soils science; Health and Safety; groundwater; groundwater geochemistry; groundwater pollution; groundwater resources; hydrogeochemistry; soils; fertilizers, nitrogen; nitrate; health hazards; watersheds; Human health
Illustrationslocation maps; stratigraphic diagram; schematic diagrams; graphs; geochemical plots; plots
ProgramAgriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Funding Program
ProgramPrince Edward Island Department of Environment, Energy and Forestry, Funding Program
Released2004 01 01
AbstractAquifers constitute the only source of freshwater on PEI. In many areas, nitrate concentrations in groundwater (GW) exceed natural levels. It is assumed that mineral fertilization for potato cropping constitutes a major source of these nitrates. However, a better understanding of the transfer dynamics of nitrates from soils to GW is required to reduce their detrimental effects. Our initial results in the Wilmot watershed indicate that 23% of the samples have N-NO3 concentrations above the threshold established for human health (10 mg/L), whereas 10% have concentrations within natural ranges (<1 mg/L). Combined nitrate and water isotope results suggest that during summer and fall most nitrates in the Wilmot River are derived from GW, and that ~75% of the samples contain nitrates deriving from chemical fertilizers while the remaining ~25% contain nitrates from natural soils, manures or septic wastes.

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