Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Rivers May Be Emitting Substance Involved In Ozone Destruction

Date:
December 15, 1998
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Rivers may be emitting significant amounts of nitrous oxide as a result of effluents from wastewater treatment plants and agricultural fields, according to a study by the U.S. Geological Survey. In the atmosphere, nitrous oxide (N2O) acts as a catalyst in ozone depletion. The government study shows N2O emissions along the South Platte River in Colorado and Nebraska, where the measurements were taken, are comparable to some of the highest known emission rates in the world.

Federal Study Cites High Emissions of Nitrous Oxide

Rivers may be emitting significant amounts of nitrous oxide as a result of effluents from wastewater treatment plants and agricultural fields, according to a study by the U.S. Geological Survey. In the atmosphere, nitrous oxide (N2O) acts as a catalyst in ozone depletion. The government study shows N2O emissions along the South Platte River in Colorado and Nebraska, where the measurements were taken, are comparable to some of the highest known emission rates in the world.

The study is reported in the Nov. 14 web edition of Environmental Science & Technology, a peer-reviewed scientific journal published by the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society. The study also will appear in the Jan. 1 print edition of the journal.

The total annual N2O emissions from the South Platte River are "similar to the estimated annual N2O emissions from all primary municipal wastewater treatment processes in the United States," according to the article. "If this one river system is similar to others, then nitrous oxide emissions from rivers could be a major human-made source of N2O to the atmosphere," say USGS hydrologists Peter McMahon, Ph.D., and Kevin Dennehy, who conducted the one-year study. However, the researchers point out that measurements from other rivers are needed before drawing any final conclusions.

Few published accounts exist of nitrous oxide emissions from an inland river, according to McMahon and Dennehy. Most N2O studies have focused on wastewater treatment plants, agricultural fields, forests and lakes, they say.

As with many rivers in the U.S., the South Platte receives wastewater effluent from municipalities and groundwater return flows from irrigated fields. The measurements were taken along a 450-mile stretch of the river from North Platte, Neb., to just above Denver, Colo.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Rivers May Be Emitting Substance Involved In Ozone Destruction." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 December 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/12/981215081128.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (1998, December 15). Rivers May Be Emitting Substance Involved In Ozone Destruction. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/12/981215081128.htm
American Chemical Society. "Rivers May Be Emitting Substance Involved In Ozone Destruction." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/12/981215081128.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Newsy (July 28, 2014) The asteroid that killed the dinosaurs struck at the worst time for them. A new study says that if it hit earlier or later, they might've survived. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming

The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming

AP (July 28, 2014) AP Investigation: As the Obama administration weans the country off dirty fuels, energy companies are ramping-up overseas coal exports at a heavy price. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

AP (July 27, 2014) A live-streaming webcam catches loggerhead sea turtle hatchlings emerging from a nest in the Florida Keys. (July 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins