Climate model data were provided from the EU WATCH project and the EU ENSEMBLES project. We thank
for the timely and constructive comments of two anonymous reviewers and selleck products the editor (Denis Hughes) at Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies. We also thank for the comments of two anonymous reviewers, the associate editor (Harry Lins) as well as the editor (Demetris Koutsoyiannis) of Hydrological Sciences Journal, where this paper was originally submitted in 2012. “
“In past decades, dramatic shifts in water quality have been observed in the Baltic Sea. Problems occurring with such shifts include stagnation events that have resulted in anoxic bottom waters, the spreading of dead bottom zones and increased frequency and intensity of algal blooms (Boesch et al., 2006, Boesch et
al., 2008, Österblom et al., 2007, Vahtera et al., 2007 and Voss et al., 2011). Of particular concern are blooms of toxic dinoflagellates HSP inhibitor and raphidophytes, which cause fish mortalities in both the wild and aquaculture (Boesch et al., 2006). More of these events are likely to occur in the future as the majority of projections point to increased nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) loads coming into the Baltic Sea in the 21st century (Graham and Bergström, 2001, Hägg et al., 2013 and Reckermann et al., 2011). In addition to loads, it may be insightful to consider other indicators such as the N:P ratio which can also change under conditions where one nutrient is declining/increasing faster than the other. This in turn can cause algal blooms as different optimal N:P ratios exist for the growth of various algae (Anderson et al., 2002 and Hodgekiss and Ho, 1997). As such, monitoring the water quality of the rivers that drain into the Baltic Sea is important as they directly influence the Sea’s water quality state (Jansson and Stålvant, 2001). This is because the Baltic Sea has little water exchange with the North Sea, and as a result is more susceptible to anthropogenic impacts compared to other, more open, seas (Pastuszak and Igras, 2012 and Pawlak et al., 2009). Therefore, it is important
to understand and identify mechanisms that control the water quality ADP ribosylation factor in the catchments surrounding the Baltic Sea, known as the Baltic Sea Drainage Basin (BSDB). Investigating possible mechanisms influencing the water quality of the rivers draining the catchments in the BSDB, however, is not straightforward as differences exist among the catchments in terms of societal, land cover and climatic characteristics (Graham and Bergström, 2001 and Thorborg, 2012). Changes in society, land cover and climate can all lead to changes in the water quality of the catchments. Hägg et al. (2013) showed that regional anthropogenic effects are potentially more important for projecting nutrient load than climate change impacts.