Principal Investigators: Henry Bokuniewicz
Funded by the Long Island Groundwater Research Institute
Students Supported: Ruth Coffey (Ph.D.)
Project Description: Island populations and economic activity, like agriculture and tourism, both demand freshwater and supply nutrients, like nitrate, to the freshwater reserves. Freshwater and its pollutant load are delivered to the coastal zone via SGD with consequent impacts on tourism and fisheries thus linking the land-based and marine economic sectors. In August, 2006 (the rainy season) and again in January, 2007 (the dry season) researchers from the Marine Sciences Research Center teamed up with students from the University of the West Indies and professionals from the Barbados water authority to begin to characterize the flux of submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) from Barbados.
Manual seepage devices were employed in two diverse locations to assess point flux measurements over several temporal scales Results obtained, thus far, suggest that SGG at some places along the coast of Barbados, is about one-third freshwater in the wet season and a fifth part freshwater component in the dry season. At other places along the coast, there is no discernable freshwater component; all the SGD is recirculated seawater. The freshwater component of the SGD is responsible for transporting nitrogen into the coastal environment. We are also beginning similar case studies in Mallorca and Mauritius.