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Title: Hot Spots and Hot Moments of Nitrogen in a Riparian Corridor

Abstract

We use 3-D high-resolution reactive transport modeling to investigate whether the spatial distribution of organic-carbon-rich and chemically reduced sediments located in the riparian zone and temporal variability in groundwater flow direction impact the formation and distribution of nitrogen hot spots (regions that exhibit higher reaction rates when compared to other locations nearby) and hot moments (times that exhibit high reaction rates as compared to longer intervening time periods) within the Rifle floodplain in Colorado. Groundwater flows primarily toward the Colorado River from the floodplain but changes direction at times of high river stage. The result is that oxic river water infiltrates the Rifle floodplain during these relatively short-term events. Simulation results indicate that episodic rainfall in the summer season leads to the formation of nitrogen hot moments associated with Colorado River rise and resulting river infiltration into the floodplain. Here, the results further demonstrate that the naturally reduced zones (NRZs) present in sediments of the Rifle floodplain have a higher potential for nitrate removal, approximately 70% greater than non-NRZs for typical hydrological conditions. During river water infiltration, nitrate reduction capacity remains the same within the NRZs, however, these conditions impact non-NRZs to a greater extent (approximately 95% less nitrate removal).more » Model simulations indicate chemolithoautotrophs are primarily responsible for the removal of nitrate in the Rifle floodplain. These nitrogen hot spots and hot moments are sustained by microbial respiration and the chemolithoautotrophic oxidation of reduced minerals in the riparian zone.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [2];  [3]
  1. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States). Energy Geosciences Division
  2. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States). Climate and Ecosystem Sciences
  3. Subsurface Insights, LLC, Hanover NH (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
OSTI Identifier:
1476595
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1417061
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-05CH11231; DE‐SC0009732; DE‐AC02‐05CH11231
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Water Resources Research
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 54; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 0043-1397
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union (AGU)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES

Citation Formats

Dwivedi, Dipankar, Arora, Bhavna, Steefel, Carl I., Dafflon, Baptiste, and Versteeg, Roelof. Hot Spots and Hot Moments of Nitrogen in a Riparian Corridor. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1002/2017WR022346.
Dwivedi, Dipankar, Arora, Bhavna, Steefel, Carl I., Dafflon, Baptiste, & Versteeg, Roelof. Hot Spots and Hot Moments of Nitrogen in a Riparian Corridor. United States. doi:10.1002/2017WR022346.
Dwivedi, Dipankar, Arora, Bhavna, Steefel, Carl I., Dafflon, Baptiste, and Versteeg, Roelof. Thu . "Hot Spots and Hot Moments of Nitrogen in a Riparian Corridor". United States. doi:10.1002/2017WR022346. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1476595.
@article{osti_1476595,
title = {Hot Spots and Hot Moments of Nitrogen in a Riparian Corridor},
author = {Dwivedi, Dipankar and Arora, Bhavna and Steefel, Carl I. and Dafflon, Baptiste and Versteeg, Roelof},
abstractNote = {We use 3-D high-resolution reactive transport modeling to investigate whether the spatial distribution of organic-carbon-rich and chemically reduced sediments located in the riparian zone and temporal variability in groundwater flow direction impact the formation and distribution of nitrogen hot spots (regions that exhibit higher reaction rates when compared to other locations nearby) and hot moments (times that exhibit high reaction rates as compared to longer intervening time periods) within the Rifle floodplain in Colorado. Groundwater flows primarily toward the Colorado River from the floodplain but changes direction at times of high river stage. The result is that oxic river water infiltrates the Rifle floodplain during these relatively short-term events. Simulation results indicate that episodic rainfall in the summer season leads to the formation of nitrogen hot moments associated with Colorado River rise and resulting river infiltration into the floodplain. Here, the results further demonstrate that the naturally reduced zones (NRZs) present in sediments of the Rifle floodplain have a higher potential for nitrate removal, approximately 70% greater than non-NRZs for typical hydrological conditions. During river water infiltration, nitrate reduction capacity remains the same within the NRZs, however, these conditions impact non-NRZs to a greater extent (approximately 95% less nitrate removal). Model simulations indicate chemolithoautotrophs are primarily responsible for the removal of nitrate in the Rifle floodplain. These nitrogen hot spots and hot moments are sustained by microbial respiration and the chemolithoautotrophic oxidation of reduced minerals in the riparian zone.},
doi = {10.1002/2017WR022346},
journal = {Water Resources Research},
number = 1,
volume = 54,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {12}
}

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Cited by: 5 works
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Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: Rifle floodplain is located in western Colorado. Previous studies have identified naturally reduced zones (NRZs; shown in orange) in the saturated alluvium using induced polarization imaging (see, Wainwright et al., 2016). NRZs are linked with elevated organic carbon, Fe(II), sulfide, and U(IV).

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