Long-Term (2002–2021) Trend in Nutrient-Related Pollution at Small Stratified Inland Estuaries, the Kishon SE Mediterranean Case

Barak Herut, Yaron Gertner, Yael Segal, Guy Sisma-Ventura, Nurit Gordon, Natalia Belkin, Eyal Rahav

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nutrient pollution may negatively affect the water quality and ecological status of rivers and estuaries worldwide, specifically in stratified and small inland estuaries. We present a long-term, two-decade data set of dissolved inorganic nutrient concentrations, chlorophyll-a (chl-a), dissolved oxygen (DO), and potentially toxic algal cell concentrations at the Kishon River estuary (Israel) as a case study for assessing nutrient ecological thresholds in such type of estuaries, prevalent along the Mediterranean coast of Israel. In-situ measurements and water samples were collected at 3 permanent stations at the lower part of the estuary every March and October/November in 40 campaigns over the years 2002 to 2021. In spite of an improvement in nutrient loads and concentrations as recorded over the last 2 decades, the nutrient and chl-a levels at the Kishon estuary surface water represent mostly a ‘bad’ or ‘moderate’ ecological state, considering the recommended thresholds discussed in this study. It is suggested to develop a combined suite of nutrient and biological variables for assessing Good Environmental Status (GES), considering the relatively high residence time of such small, low-flow estuarine water bodies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number484
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 by the authors.


  • Mediterranean
  • estuary
  • nutrients
  • pollution
  • river
  • seawater
  • water quality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Biochemistry
  • Aquatic Science
  • Water Science and Technology


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