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River water quality of the River Cherwell: An agricultural clay-dominated catchment in the upper Thames Basin, southeastern England

Neal, Colin; Neal, Margaret; Hill, Linda; Wickham, Heather. 2006 River water quality of the River Cherwell: An agricultural clay-dominated catchment in the upper Thames Basin, southeastern England. Science of the Total Environment, 360 (1-3). 272-289. 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2005.08.040

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Abstract/Summary

The water quality of the River Cherwell and a tributary of it, the Ray, are described in terms of point and diffuse sources of pollution, for this rural area of the upper Thames Basin. Point sources of pollution dominate at the critical ecological low flow periods of high biological activity. Although the surface geology is predominantly clay, base flow is partly supplied from springs in underlying carbonate-bearing strata, which influences the water quality particularly with regards to calcium and alkalinity. The hydrogeochemistry of the river is outlined and the overall importance of urban point sources even in what would normally be considered to be rural catchments is stressed in relation to the European Unions Water Framework Directive. Issues of phosphorus stripping at sewage treatment works are also considered: such stripping on the Cherwell has reduced phosphorus concentrations by about a factor of two, but this is insufficient for the needs of the Water Framework Directive

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2005.08.040
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biogeochemistry
CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Water
CEH Sections: _ Water Quality
ISSN: 0048-9697
Additional Keywords: Cherwell, Ray, Thames, Banbury, Oxford, Oxford clay, River, Clay, Chalk, Oolite, Water quality, Nutrients, Nitrate, Phosphorus, Trace elements, Agriculture, Sewage, Effluent, Water Framework Directive, Phosphorus stripping, URGENT
NORA Subject Terms: Agriculture and Soil Science
Hydrology
Date made live: 02 Jul 2007 09:15
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/419

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