World Resource Institute

Eutrophication and Hypoxia Publications

This section provides access to several publications dealing with different topics associated with eutrophication and hypoxia. These publications are the result of an extensive literature review and provide a wealth of information of relevance to the general public, policy-makers, researchers, etc. Here, publications have been categorized into a number of headings considered to best represent their nature and intent (right). Additionally, a number of publications considered to be introductory into the subject are given below.

Challenges and Opportunities for Science in Reducing Nutrient Over-enrichment of Coastal Ecosystems
Boesch, D.F. Estuaries and Coasts 25(4): 886-900, 2002.

Clean Coastal Waters: Understanding and Reducing the Effects of Nutrient Pollution
National Research Council. National Academy Press, Washington DC, 2000.

Coastal Basins on the Edge
UNESCO, SCOPE, and UNEP Policy Briefs Number 7, 2008.
This paper discusses the threats and effects of human activities where land and ocean meets at semi-enclosed coastal water bodies.

Coastal eutrophication: recent developments in definitions and implications for monitoring strategies
Andersen, J.H., Schluter, L. and Aertebjerg, G. Journal of Plankton Research 28(7): 621-628, 2006.

Coastal Marine Eutrophication: A Definition, Social Causes, and Future Concerns
Nixon, S. Ophelia 41: 199-219, 1995.

Dynamics and distribution of natural and human-caused hypoxia
Rabalais, N.N., Diaz, R.J., Levin, L.A., Turner, R.E., Gilbert, D. and J, Zhang. Biogeosciences 7: 585-619, 2010.

Eutrophication and Hypoxia in Coastal Areas: A Global Assessment of the State of Knowledge
Selman, M., S. Greenhalgh, R. Diaz, and Z. Sugg. Washington, DC: World Resources Institute, 2008.
Eutrophication—the overenrichment of water by nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus—has emerged as a leading water quality problem. This report identifies over 415 areas worldwide that are experiencing eutrophication symptoms, and there are significant information gaps in many regions.

Eutrophication and the Macroscope
Nixon, S.W. Hydrobiologia 629: 5-19, 2009.

Eutrophication: Sources and Drivers of Nutrient Pollution
Selman, M. and S. Greenhalgh. Washington DC: World Resources Institute, 2009.
This policy note provides a snapshot of the sources of nutrient pollution and the corresponding socioeconomic drivers that are increasing nutrient levels in our waterways.

Hypoxia and Nutrient Reduction in the Coastal Zone: Advice for Prevention, Remediation and Research
STAP advisory document. Washington DC: Global Environment Facility, 2011.
Hypoxia (or oxygen depletion) occurs when waters are overloaded with too many nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorous and silicon, often arriving in coastal areas from farm fertilizers, municipal sewage systems and livestock waste. This report was inspired by the increasing number of hypoxic zones globally, which have doubled every 10 years over the past five decades, such that there are now over 500 such areas recorded. The authors of this report examined data about ocean areas where oxygen is drastically reduced along with the social and environmental difficulties that arise with loss in marine life, fisheries, tourism, and decline in human health. The study found that one of the most efficient ways to reduce oxygen depletion was to stem the flow of nutrients from fertilizers, municipal sewage or livestock waste into coastal waters. The report recommends that the GEF and its partners “urgently increase their support to nutrient reduction projects, building on GEF’s experience and leadership.” It also recommends, inter alia, that there be established principles to support tests of management responses to permanent and seasonal hypoxic zones, and that a toolkit for evaluating hypoxia and/or for addressing hypoxia and nutrient reduction should be developed for inclusion in the work of the GEF International Waters focal Area, including its Transboundary Diagnostic Analyses and Strategic Action Programs.

Our Evolving Conceptual Model of the Coastal Eutrophication Problem
Cloern, James. E. 2001. Marine Ecology Progress Series 210(223-253): 223-253.
In this paper, Cloern examines the conception of the problem of coastal eutrophication among several environmental groups, and develops a model to analyze ecosystem reactions to nutrient input.

Overview of Hypoxia around the World
Diaz, R.J. Journal of Environmental Quality 30(2): 275-281, 2001.

Nitrogen as the limiting nutrient for eutrophication in coastal marine ecosystems: Evolving views over three decades
Howarth, R.W. and R, Marino. Limnology and Oceanography 51(1): 364-376, 2006.

Return to Neverland: Shifting Baselines Affect Eutrophication Restoration Targets
Duarte, C.M., Conley, D.J., Carstensen, J. and M, Sanchez-Camacho. Estuaries and Coast 32: 29-36, 2009.

Reviving Dead Zones
Mee, L. Scientific American 295(5): 79-85, 2006.

The Dead Zones: Oxygen-Starved Coastal Waters
Joyce , S. Environmental Health Perspectives 108(3), 2000.

The Growing Human Footprint on Coastal and Open-Ocean Biogeochemistry
Doney, S.C. Science 328: 1512-1516, 2010.