04 Apr 2022
04 Apr 2022
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal BG.

Rapidly increasing sulfate concentration: a hidden promoter of eutrophication in shallow lakes

Chuanqiao Zhou1,, Yu Peng1,, Li Chen1, Miaotong Yu1, Muchun Zhou2, Runze Xu1, Lanqing Zhang1, Siyuan Zhang3, Xiaoguang Xu1, Limin Zhang1, and Guoxiang Wang1 Chuanqiao Zhou et al.
  • 1School of Environment, Nanjing Normal University, Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource Development and Application, Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Environmental Change and Ecological Construction, Nanjing 210023, China
  • 2China Aerospace Science and Industry Nanjing Chenguang group, Nanjing 210022, China
  • 3School of Energy and Environment, Southeast University, Nanjing 210096, China
  • These authors contributed equally to this work.

Abstract. Except for excessive nutrient input and climate warming, the rapidly rising SO42- concentration is considered as a crucial contributor to the eutrophication in shallow lakes, however, the driving process and mechanism are still far from clear. In this study, we constructed a series of microcosms with initial SO42- concentrations of 0, 30, 60, 90, 120 and 150 mg/L to simulate the rapidly SO42- increase of Lake Taihu subjected to cyanobacteria blooms. Results showed that the sulfate reduction rate was stimulated by the increase of initial SO42- concentrations and cyanobacteria-derived organic matter, with the maximal sulfate reduction rate of 39.68 mg/L∙d in the treatment of 150 mg/L SO42- concentration. During the sulfate reduction, the produced maximal ∑S2- concentration in the overlying water and acid volatile sulfate (AVS) in the sediments were 3.15 mg/L and 11.11 mg/kg, respectively, and both of them were positively correlated with initial SO42- concentrations (R2 = 0.97; R2 = 0.92). The increasing abundance of sulfate reduction bacteria (SRB) was also linearly correlated with initial SO42- concentrations (R2 = 0.96), ranging from 6.65 × 107 to 1.97 × 108 copies/g. However, the Fe2+ concentrations displayed a negative correlation with initial SO42- concentrations, and the final Fe2+ concentrations were 9.68, 7.07, 6.5, 5.57, 4.42 and 3.46 mg/L, respectively. As a result, the released TP in the overlying water, to promote the eutrophication, was up to 1.4 mg/L in the treatment of 150 mg/L SO42- concentration. Therefore, it is necessary to consider the effect of rapidly increasing SO42- concentrations on the release of endogenous phosphorus and the eutrophication in lakes.

Chuanqiao Zhou et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on bg-2022-77', Anonymous Referee #1, 15 Apr 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Xiaoguang Xu, 25 May 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on bg-2022-77', Anonymous Referee #2, 16 Apr 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Xiaoguang Xu, 25 May 2022
  • RC3: 'Comment on bg-2022-77', Anonymous Referee #3, 22 Apr 2022
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC3', Xiaoguang Xu, 25 May 2022
    • AC4: 'Reply on RC3', Xiaoguang Xu, 25 May 2022
  • RC4: 'Comment on bg-2022-77', Anonymous Referee #4, 22 Apr 2022
    • AC5: 'Reply on RC4', Xiaoguang Xu, 25 May 2022

Chuanqiao Zhou et al.

Chuanqiao Zhou et al.


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Short summary
The dramatical increase of SO42- concentration up to 100 mg/L in eutrophic lakes has aroused great attention. It enhanced the sulfate reduction to release of a large amount of ∑S2- during cyanobacteria decomposition. The Fe2+ released from the iron reduction process is captured by ∑S2-, and finally the combination of iron and P was reduced, promoting the release of endogenous P. Therefore, increasing sulfate concentrations are proven to be a hidden promoter of eutrophication in shallow lakes.