Geographia Polonica (1995) vol. 65

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Reconstructing the development of human impact from diatoms and 210Pb sediment dating (The gulf of Gdańsk — Southern Baltic Sea)

Andrzej Witkowski, Janusz Pempkowiak

Geographia Polonica (1995) vol. 65, pp. 63-78

Abstract

The subjects of the study were the diatoms occurring in subfossil sediments of the Gulf of Gdańsk. Analysis of changes in the diatom flora from210Pb-dated sediment cores appeared to be an useful tool in reconstructing human impact on the environment of the Gulf of Gdańsk. The application of analysis of diatom coupled with other siliceous microalgae (Chrysophyceans and Ebridians) and sediment dating allowed for the determination of the progress of deterioration in environment of the Gulf of Gdańsk. It is shown that the change in the diatom flora of the study area coincides with industrialization inland and with the construction of the artificial mouth of the Wisla. The results obtained from the sedimentary record of the Gulf of Gdańsk are compared with those from other areas within the Baltic Sea.

Keywords: Diatoms, Chrysophyceans, Ebridians, sedimentary record, 210Pb-dating, industrial pollution of the sea, eutrophication, Gulf of Gdańsk, Baltic Sea

Andrzej Witkowski, Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdańsk ul. Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378 Gdynia, Poland
Janusz Pempkowiak, Institute of Oceanology, Polish Academy of Sciences ul. Powstańców Warszawy 55, 81-765 Sopot, Poland