Date of this Version
Published in Environmental Pollution 265 (2020) 115024
Climate change will impact soil properties such as soil moisture, organic carbon and temperature and changes in these properties will influence the sorption, biodegradation and leaching of trace organic contaminants to groundwater. In this study, we conducted a modeling case study to evaluate atrazine and estrone transport in the subsurface under current and future climate conditions at a field site in central Nebraska. According to the modeling results, in the future, enhanced evapotranspiration and increased average air temperature may cause drier soil conditions, which consequently reduces the biodegradation of atrazine and estrone in the water phase. On the other hand, greater transpiration rates lead to greater root solute uptake which may decrease the concentration of atrazine and estrone in the soil profile. Another consequence of future climate is that the infiltration and leaching rates for both atrazine and estrone may be lower under future climate scenarios. Reduced infiltration of trace organic compounds may indicate that lower trace organic concentrations in groundwater may occur under future climate scenarios.