StreamChemDB: a web-accessible stream chemistry database

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TitleStreamChemDB: a web-accessible stream chemistry database
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsJohnson, SL, Argerich, A, Sebestyen, SD, Rhoades, CC, Ice, G
Conference NameLTER All Science Meeting, Estes Park, CO
AbstractThe USDA Forest Service Experimental Forests and Ranges (EFR) network and the National Science Foundation’s Long-term Ecological Research (LTER) sites have been collecting stream chemistry data in their catchments for decades. These data have been and continue to be used for research on ecosystem processes, biogeochemical responses to natural and anthropogenic disturbances, and climate change influences on long term trends. They also represent essential information towards informing state and federal agencies about achievable nutrient levels. Comparisons across sites have been limited, in part because these data are only accessible on disparate web sites or in publications, with varying levels of documentation, and in a variety of formats. StreamChemDB is a new, cross-site database that is beginning to centralize stream biogeochemistry data using a web-accessible portal. A unique characteristic of StreamChemDB is the extensive documentation of metadata, i.e. analytical methods, detection limits, sampling frequency and locations. Another important attribute is the standardization of vocabulary with other existing projects, databases and portals (CUAHSI, Hydrologic information System, WQX, CZO, EarthChemDB, etc.) through the implementation of controlled vocabularies for analytical and sampling methods, detection limits, analytes, and units. Additionally, the database is being designed to facilitate workflows with other existing databases, such as Climate and Hydrology Database Project (ClimDB/HydroDB) and SiteDB. Currently populated with nitrate and ammonium data from 72 catchments across 11 forested sites, StreamChemDB is facilitating cross-site syntheses that are increasing our understanding of water quality variability in reference catchments as well as responses to land use change and natural disturbances across North America.
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