University of Oulu

Rankinen, K., Futter, M., Bhattacharjee, J., Cano Bernal, J. E., Lannergård, E. E., Ojanen, M., Ronkanen, A.-K., Marttila, H., & Hellsten, S. (2023). Influence of forest management changes and reuse of peat production areas on water quality in a northern river. CATENA, 226, 107045.

Influence of forest management changes and reuse of peat production areas on water quality in a northern river

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Author: Rankinen, Katri1; Futter, Martyn2; Bhattacharjee, Joy3;
Organizations: 1Finnish Environment Institute, Finland
2Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden
3Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 7.2 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-09-06


In Northern Finland, the most significant land use challenges are related to bioenergy production from peat extraction and forest biomass. Increasing societal demand for bioenergy may increase production rates. However, environmental impacts of peat extraction are of increasing concern, which has led to a decline in production, thereby freeing up these areas for other uses. Using storylines for different societal futures and process-based models (PERSiST and INCA), we simulated the effect of simultaneous land use change and climate change on water quality (phosphorus, nitrogen and suspended sediments concentration). Conversion of peat extraction areas to arable land, together with climate change, may pose a risk for deterioration of ecological status. On the other hand, continuous forestry may have positive impacts on water quality. Suspended sediment concentrations in the river do not exceed water quality requirements for salmonids, but nitrogen concentrations may exceed threshold values especially during high flows. A storyline emphasizing sustainable development in energy production led to the best outcome in terms of water protection.

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Series: Catena
ISSN: 0341-8162
ISSN-E: 1872-6887
ISSN-L: 0341-8162
Volume: 226
Article number: 107045
DOI: 10.1016/j.catena.2023.107045
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 218 Environmental engineering
Copyright information: © 2023 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (