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CO2 fluxes from aquaculture ponds of a tropical wetland: Potential of multiple lime treatment in reduction of CO2 emission

Chanda, Abhra, Das, Sourav, Bhattacharyya, Sourav, Das, Isha, Giri, Sandip, Mukhopadhyay, Anirban, Samanta, Sourav, Dutta, Dibyendu, Akhand, Anirban, Choudhury, S.B., Hazra, Sugata
The Science of the total environment 2019 v.655 pp. 1321-1333
aquaculture, carbon, carbon dioxide, carbon dioxide production, flocculation, greenhouse gas emissions, pH, photosynthesis, ponds, sewage, turbidity, wetlands, India
Partial pressure of CO2 in water [pCO2(water)] and air-water CO2 flux were estimated in two aquaculture ponds (one received no lime treatment (NTP) and in the other lime treatment was performed (LTP) four times a year) every month throughout an annual cycle, situated in East Kolkata Wetlands, a Ramsar Site in eastern India. It was hypothesized that lime treatment can potentially lower the pCO2(water) in aquaculture ponds and hence make these aquatic bodies sinks for CO2. The results portrayed that NTP acted as a source of CO2 throughout the year (annual mean: 1929 ± 1397 μmol m−2 h−1), whereas, LTP acted as CO2 sinks post lime addition (monthly mean ranged from −366 ± 16 to −449 ± 32 μmol m−2 h−1), though the effect of lime addition was found to diminish by the next month and it acted as source for CO2 in the months when no lime treatment was done (LTP annual mean: 1010 ± 1617 μmol m−2 h−1). Lime treatment increased the pH level and reduced the turbidity which facilitated optimum photosynthesis and the productivity increased rapidly. Beyond the critical pH value of 8.9–9.0, the pCO2(water) values became under-saturated with respect to atmospheric CO2 concentration. The effect of lime treatment was not found to prevail in the following months as a steady source of sewage from the Kolkata metropolis which feeds these aquaculture constantly bring in a huge carbon source both in inorganic and organic form. As soon as the flocculation effect of the lime dies off, the water column starts becoming turbid again which aids in converting the system into a net heterotrophic one from a net autotrophic. Based on the results we could successfully accept our hypothesis that lime treatment can not only reduce the CO2 emission but also make the system a CO2 sink.