On the Role of Freshwater Outflow on Coastal Marine Ecosystems—A Workshop Summary

  • K. F. Drinkwater
Conference paper
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 7)


The papers presented at the workshop and found within this volume indicate the profound effect river input to the oceans has on the physical, chemical and biological processes in coastal waters. Freshwater induces important circulation patterns, effects vertical stability, modifies mixing and exchange processes, and influences nutrients and primary production. Particular organic and inorganic compounds, as well as organisms, carried seaward in rivers, are incorporated into marine food chains. Physical and biological characteristics of coastal waters reflect the seasonal and interannual variability of the incoming rivers. This includes the fisheries as interannual fluctuations in the yields of certain commercial fish species are found to covary with runoff. These freshwater effects are not limited to an area close to the river mouth but can extend over a thousand kilometers in the case of large rivers.


Coastal Current River Plume Freshwater Runoff Coastal Marine Ecosystem Vertical Stability 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. F. Drinkwater
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Fisheries & Oceans, Marine Ecology LaboratoryBedford Institute of OceanographyCanada

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