Skip to Main Content
Uncertainty analysis on simple mass balance model to calculate critical loads for soil acidityAuthor(s): Harbin Li; Steven G. McNulty
Source: Environmental Pollution, Vol. 149: 315-326
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
PDF: Download Publication (347 KB)
DescriptionSimple mass balance equations (SMBE) of critical acid loads (CAL) in forest soil were developed to assess potential risks of air pollutants to ecosystems. However, to apply SMBE reliably at large scales, SMBE must be tested for adequacy and uncertainty. Our goal was to provide a detailed analysis of uncertainty in SMBE so that sound strategies for scaling up CAL estimates to the national scale could be developed. Specifically, we wanted to quantify CAL uncertainty under natural variability in 17 model parameters, and determine their relative contributions in predicting CAL. Results indicated that uncertainty in CAL came primarily from components of base cation weathering (BCw; 49%) and acid neutralizing capacity (46%), whereas the most critical parameters were BCw base rate (62%), soil depth (20%), and soil temperature (11%). Thus, improvements in estimates of these factors are crucial to reducing uncertainty and successfully scaling up SMBE for national assessments of CAL.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationLi, Harbin; McNulty, Steven G. 2007. Uncertainty analysis on simple mass balance model to calculate critical loads for soil acidity. Environmental Pollution, Vol. 149: 315-326
Keywordscritical load, uncertainty analysis, error partition, sensitivity
- Site-specific critical acid load estimates for forest soils in the Osborn Creek watershed, Michigan
- Sour streams in appalachia: mapping nature’s buffer against sulfur deposition
- Estimates of critical acid loads and exceedances for forest soils across the conterminous United States
XML: View XML