There is now overwhelming documentation of large-scale chemical recovery from surface water acidification in Europe, but to date there has been little documentation of biological recovery. Modelling studies based on current emission reduction plans in Europe indicate that there will be further chemical recovery. The uncertainties in these scenarios mainly relate to the future behavior of nitrogen in the ecosystem and the effects of climate change. Four major climate-related confounding factors that may influence the chemical and biological recovery process are: i) increased frequency and severity of sea-salt episodes; ii) increased frequency and severity of drought; iii) in-creased turnover of organic carbon; iv) increased mineralization of nitrogen. International cooperative work to abate acidification has so far been very successful, but there is still a long way to go, and many potential setbacks. It is essential that future development of water chemistry and aquatic biota in acidified waterbodies continue to be monitored in relation to further emission reductions of S and N and future effects of climate change.
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Vol. 32 • No. 3