Polluted rivers contribute to greenhouse gas emissions

When rivers become polluted, their contribution to global warming can go up an order of magnitude (Credit: Freebiespic)

BBC has recently published a Future Planet article on greenhouse gas emissions from rivers. This insightful article uses work from INSA team member Pascal Boeckx’s group (Ghent University) on greenhouse gas emissions from the Cuenca river in Ecuador. In a recent study they found that deterioration in water quality can increase greenhouse gas emissions by an order of magnitude:

” When the river water quality deteriorated from acceptable to polluted, the concentration of CO2 and CH4 in the rivers increased tenfold while N2O concentrations were boosted by 15 times ” – Long Tuan Ho (Ghent University)

The case study isn’t Africa, but it is a compelling example and relevant to all river systems! Read the BBC article here:


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