Pollutant Transport Modelling in Large River Plumes

by J. A. Stronach, Seaconsult Marine Research Ltd, Vancouver, Canada,
C. R. Murthy, Seaconsult Marine Research Ltd, Vancouver, Canada,
T. S. Murty, Seaconsult Marine Research Ltd, Vancouver, Canada,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Estuarine and Coastal Modeling


The Niagara River plume in Lake Ontario and the Fraser River plume in the Strait of Georgia are of similar spatial dimensions, and arise from rivers with comparable discharge. Both rivers receive significant loads of toxic wastes. Hydrodynamic models of the Niagara River plume and the Fraser River plume are combined with a generalized pollutant transport model to simulate the horizontal distributions of pollutants. The model partitions the pollutant between a dissolved fraction and a fraction adsorbed onto the ambient suspended sediment. To simulate this partitioning, the pollutant transport module separately computes suspended sediment concentration and total pollutant concentration. The Niagara River plume simulations compared reasonably well with observations. For the Fraser River plume, observational data is presently unavailable. In both cases, the suspended sediment load had a significant effect on the pollutant transport distribution.

Subject Headings: Water pollution | Plumes | Pollution | Contaminant transport | Sediment transport | Suspended sediment | Rivers and streams | Hydrologic models | Georgia | United States | Lake Ontario | Great Lakes

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