Modelling the impacts of European emission and climate change scenarios on acid-sensitive catchments in Finland
- 1Coordination Centre for Effects, PBL, P.O. Box 303, 3720 AH Bilthoven, The Netherlands
- 2Environmental and Resource Studies, Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario K9J 7B8, Canada
- 3Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), P.O. Box 140, 00251 Helsinki, Finland
Abstract. The dynamic hydro-chemical Model of Acidification of Groundwater in Catchments (MAGIC) was used to predict the response of 163 Finnish lake catchments to future acidic deposition and climatic change scenarios. Future deposition was assumed to follow current European emission reduction policies and a scenario based on maximum (technologically) feasible reductions (MFR). Future climate (temperature and precipitation) was derived from the HadAM3 and ECHAM4/OPYC3 general circulation models under two global scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC: A2 and B2). The combinations resulting in the widest range of future changes were used for simulations, i.e., the A2 scenario results from ECHAM4/OPYC3 (highest predicted change) and B2 results from HadAM3 (lowest predicted change). Future scenarios for catchment runoff were obtained from the Finnish watershed simulation and forecasting system. The potential influence of future changes in surface water organic carbon concentrations was also explored using simple empirical relationships based on temperature and sulphate deposition. Surprisingly, current emission reduction policies hardly show any future recovery; however, significant chemical recovery of soil and surface water from acidification was predicted under the MFR emission scenario. The direct influence of climate change (temperate and precipitation) on recovery was negligible, as runoff hardly changed; greater precipitation is offset by increased evapotranspiration due to higher temperatures. However, two exploratory empirical DOC models indicated that changes in sulphur deposition or temperature could have a confounding influence on the recovery of surface waters from acidification, and that the corresponding increases in DOC concentrations may offset the recovery in pH due to reductions in acidifying depositions.