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Balancing the nitrogen deposition in Natura 2000 areas in Laag Holland and salinization as restoration measure

By Y. Graat


Five Natura 2000 areas are located in Laag Holland. These areas than become subjected to the Nature Conservation Act, the current condition and possible negative effects from surrounding activities, therefore have to be assessed. As the focus of the government is on nitrogen, the nitrogen load in this area will be assess based on literature, expert knowledge and modelling. In Laag Holland the habitat type’s Wet heath and Transition mire are the nitrogen sensitive habitat types. The current nitrogen load is too high for vegetation development. Nitrogen reaches the system by surface water, atmospheric deposition and mineralization. The nitrogen load of the surface water, in addition to the phosphate and sulphate load, is too high for the initiation of new hydroseres.Local sources contribute to the nitrogen deposition, agricultural emissions contributes for 33% to the average nitrogen deposition and up to 70 % of the average ammonia deposition. Road traffic contributes less, on average less than 5%, but this can increase locally up to 25%, of the total deposition. Industry contributes on average as well as locally less than 5 % to the total nitrogen deposition. Source and effect related measures can be taken to reduce the nitrogen load or negative effects of nitrogen. However for long term conservation generic and European policies are needed to reduce the deposition load a nature reserves. Balancing of deposition is only a temporary solution as eventually the deposition has to decrease to the critical loads.The mineralization can be reduced by increased water supply with water low in nutrient concentrations, the effect of salinity only seems to be temporarily

Topics: Geowetenschappen, Natura 2000, nitrogen, Laag Holland, salinization
Year: 2009
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