January 22, 2018

Erin Reed Nitrate Management Study Published in ASCE Library

Erin Reed (Florida) was the lead author for a paper entitled "Evaluating Nitrate Management in the Volusia Blue Springshed" published in the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Library, Journal of Environmental Engineering, Volume 144, Issue 3, March 2018.

The team simulated five nitrate management scenarios in the Volusia Blue Springshed recharge area, where, for decades, nitrate has impacted spring water quality.

Erin's co-authors were Dingbao Wang, Ph.D., A.M.ASCE, an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Construction Engineering at the University of Central Florida; and Steven J. Duranceau, Ph.D., a Professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Construction Engineering at the University of Central Florida.

ASCE's Journal of Environmental Engineering presents interdisciplinary information on the practice and status of research in environmental engineering science, systems engineering, and sanitation. Papers focus on design, development of engineering methods, management, governmental policies, and societal impacts of wastewater collection and treatment; the fate and transport of contaminants on watersheds, in surface waters, in groundwater, in soil, and in the atmosphere; environmental biology, microbiology, chemistry, fluid mechanics, and physical processes that control natural concentrations and dispersion of wastes in air, water, and soil; nonpoint-source pollution on watersheds, in streams, in groundwater, in lakes, and in estuaries and coastal areas; treatment, management, and control of hazardous wastes; control and monitoring of air pollution and acid deposition; airshed management; and design and management of solid waste facilities. A balanced contribution from consultants, practicing engineers, and researchers is sought on engineering solutions, and professional obligations and responsibilities.


This investigation evaluated five hypothetical scenarios relating nitrate sources in the recharge of the Volusia Blue Spring to eutrophication in the St. Johns River. In the Volusia Blue recharge area of Florida, decades of nitrate loadings have impacted the quality of spring water discharged from the confined Floridan aquifer. Simulators and field observations were used to develop and define a procedure for the first time by which local and Florida state agencies can better manage nitrate pollution. The simulations were based on population growth projections and nitrogen loads from treated wastewater discharges, septic tanks, and fertilized areas. A one-tailed t-test comparing observed with simulated nitrate values in spring discharge indicates that there is insufficient evidence of discrepancies between observed and simulated results. Results from the simulation of five nitrate management scenarios were used to estimate probable construction costs that were compared with mgL−1mg L−1 of nitrate removed. Constructed wetlands and targeted septic tank removal were the two most cost-effective nitrate management approaches. However, septic tank removal resulted in the greatest benefit with a 36% nitrate decrease in a 39-year projection of spring water quality.

More Information

Learn more about the article: https://ascelibrary.org/doi/abs/10.1061/%28ASCE%29EE.1943-7870.0001324.
Learn more about the journal: Journal of Environmental Engineering.
For consultation regarding nitrate management, contact Erin Reed: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Learn more about Erin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ereedpe/

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