New uses for old estuaries: reconstructing the Holocene Humber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This presentation demonstrated the effectiveness of estuaries at synthesising and storing organic matter and metabolising nutrient elements on 10,000 year (Holocene) time-scales, with particular reference to the way the storage and metabolism has changed as humans have modified the coastal zone. The study focused on the Humber estuary of eastern England. Here, as in most other large European estuaries, environmental changes over the last 6000-2000 years have been mostly natural. This contrasts strongly with the last 300 years when human activities including reclamation, industrial, commercial and agricultural development have been extensive. New palaeoenvironmental and geochemical data highlight the contrast between the natural and human-impacted estuary and suggest how future management of temperate estuaries in developed countries might impact organic matter storage, and carbon and nutrient metabolism in the estuarine and wider coastal zone.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-31
Number of pages3
JournalTransactions of the Leicester Literary and Philosophical Society
Issue number97
Publication statusPublished - 2003

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