EGU24-3402, updated on 08 Mar 2024
EGU General Assembly 2024
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Effects of climate and land use on water balance and water quality in selected European lakes

Ma Cristina Mercado1, Ruben Rabaneda-Bueno1, Petr Porcal1, Marek Kopacek1, Frederic Huneau2,3, and Yuliya Vystavna1
Ma Cristina Mercado et al.
  • 1Biology Centre, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Institute of Hydrobiology, Na Sádkách 7, 37005, České Budějovice, Czech Republic
  • 2Université de Corse Pascal Paoli, Département d'Hydrogéologie, Campus Grimaldi, BP52, 20250 Corte, France
  • 3Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, UMR 6134 SPE, 20250 Corte, France

Lakes, natural or artificial, are important sources of freshwater and are frequently managed to provide ecosystem services. Consequently, the water balance and water quality in lake ecosystems could be subject to different stressors associated to physical, chemical, or anthropogenic activities. Therefore, this study provides insights into the factors that influence the water balance of selected European lakes and their implications on water quality. An analysis of isotopic, chemical, and land use data using statistical and artificial intelligence models showed that climate, in particular air temperature and precipitation, played a key role in intensifying evaporation losses from lakes. Groundwater table depth and other catchment factors also had an impact on the water balance. The study also highlights that lakes at lower altitudes with shallow depths and catchments dominated by urban or crop cover were more sensitive to water balance changes. These lakes had higher evaporation-to-inflow ratios and increased levels of total nitrogen concentration in the water. However, lakes at higher elevations with deeper depths and a predominantly forested catchment area are less sensitive to changes in the water balance. These lakes, which are often of glacial origin, were characterized by lower evaporation losses and, thus, better water quality in terms of total nitrogen concentration. Overall, understanding the relationship between water balance and water quality is crucial for effective lake management and the preservation of freshwater ecosystems.

How to cite: Mercado, M. C., Rabaneda-Bueno, R., Porcal, P., Kopacek, M., Huneau, F., and Vystavna, Y.: Effects of climate and land use on water balance and water quality in selected European lakes, EGU General Assembly 2024, Vienna, Austria, 14–19 Apr 2024, EGU24-3402,, 2024.