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Title: Isotope hydrology and baseflow geochemistry in natural and human-altered watersheds in the Inland Pacific Northwest, USA

Author: Sanchez-Murillo, Ricardo; Brooks, Erin S.; Elliot, William J.; Boll, Jan;

Date: 2015

Source: Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies. doi: 10.1080/10256016.2015.1008468.

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: This study presents a stable isotope hydrology and geochemical analysis in the inland Pacific Northwest (PNW) of the USA. Isotope ratios were used to estimate mean transit times (MTTs) in natural and human-altered watersheds using the FLOWPC program. Isotope ratios in precipitation resulted in a regional meteoric water line of ä2H = 7.42·ä18O + 0.88 (n = 316; r2 = 0.97). Isotope compositions exhibited a strong temperature-dependent seasonality. Despite this seasonal variation, the stream ä18O variation was small. A significant regression (ô = 0.11D-1.09; r2 = 0.83) between baseflow MTTs and the damping ratio was found. Baseflow MTTs ranged from 0.4 to 0.6 years (human-altered), 0.7 to 1.7 years (mining-altered), and 0.7 to 3.2 years (forested). Greater MTTs were represented by more homogenous aqueous chemistry whereas smaller MTTs resulted in more dynamic compositions. The isotope and geochemical data presented provide a baseline for future hydrological modelling in the inland PNW.

Keywords: baseflow geochemistry, hydrogen-2, isotope hydrology, mean transit times, natural and human-altered watersheds, oxygen-18, watershed management

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Sanchez-Murillo, Ricardo; Brooks, Erin S.; Elliot, William J.; Boll, Jan. 2015. Isotope hydrology and baseflow geochemistry in natural and human-altered watersheds in the Inland Pacific Northwest, USA. Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies. doi: 10.1080/10256016.2015.1008468.

 


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