Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


The concern about the pollution of coastal areas has prompted a large number of field and modelling studies on the dynamic of these environments, which are also considered as important economical resources. Among them, lagoons and shallow-water estuaries occupy an important place because they can be exploited for recreational purposes and also for their great potential primary productivity, which can be channelled through the trophic chain up to levels of economical interests, as mussels and fish. The dynamic of these transition systems is very rich as they receive inputs of mechanical energy (eg tide and wind), solar free energy and nutrients (mainly nitrogen and phosphorous). These inputs stimulate the primary production both in the water column and at the bottom of the lagoons: opposite to pelagic systems, the bottom is not only a sink but acts as an important source of nutrients because of the shallowness and of the vertical turbulence caused by wind and tidal agitation. As a result, these ecosystems show strong spatial gradients of salinity from the river mouth to the sea, and of dissolved oxygen (DO) from the surface to the bottom, which makes it hard to describe them by means of lumped parameter models (ie ordinary differential equations).

Additional information

Authors: PASTRES R, University of Venice, Department of Physical Chemistry (IT);DEJAK C, University of Venice, Department of Physical Chemistry (IT);CHAN K, JRC Ispra (IT);SOLIDORO C, Osservatorio Geofisico Sperimentale, Trieste (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: SAMO 98, Venice (IT), 19-22 April 1998
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 41320 ORA
Follow us on: RSS Facebook Twitter YouTube Managed by the EU Publications Office Top