from The Open University
Alternatively you can skip the navigation by pressing 'Enter'.
The Hunt: Episode 2: In the Grip of the SeasonsWednesday, 25th November 2015 01:15 - BBC TwoHow do polar predators face the challenges of hunting in the Arctic, the most seasonal place on Earth? The only... Read more: The Hunt: Episode 2: In the Grip of the Seasons
The Hunt: Episode 2: In the Grip of the SeasonsWednesday, 25th November 2015 01:45 - BBC Two
Power to the People: Episode 2: It's Not Easy Being GreenWednesday, 25th November 2015 03:00 - BBC Four
All in the Mind: Mindfulness, porn addiction and slothfulnessWednesday, 25th November 2015 15:30 -
All in the Mind: Mindfulness, porn addiction and slothfulnessAvailable for over a yearClaudia Hammond presents the latest episode in the series that explores the limits and potential of the human mind. Read more: All in the Mind: Mindfulness, porn addiction and slothfulness
Power to the People: Episode 2: It's Not Easy Being GreenAvailable until Friday, 25th December 2015 04:00
The Hunt: Episode 2: In the Grip of the SeasonsAvailable until Friday, 25th December 2015 02:45
The Educators: Series 2: Character LessonsAvailable for over a year
Are businesses just leaping on transgender trends to turn a profit?When Selfridges is clearing space to make a genderfluid display space, and Will Young is working... Read more: Are businesses just leaping on transgender trends to turn a profit?
OpenLearn Live: 25th November 2015The place where fairies, Russians and Noah's granddaughter create their own myths, and background... Read more: OpenLearn Live: 25th November 2015
VeilingThis unit explores controversies associated with the practice of ‘veiling’ within Islam. The... Try: Veiling now
English: skills for learningThis course is for anybody who is thinking of studying for a university degree and would like to... Try: English: skills for learning now
Managing eutrophication is a key element in maintaining the earth's biodiversity....
Managing eutrophication is a key element in maintaining the earth's biodiversity. Eutrophication is a process mostly associated with human activity whereby ecosystems accumulate minerals. This unit explains how this process occurs, what its effects on different types of habitat are, and how it might be managed.
By the end of this unit you should be able to:
- Describe the principal differences between a eutrophic and an oligotrophic ecosystem.
- Explain the mechanisms by which species diversity is reduced as a result of eutrophication. (Questions 2.1 and 2.2)
- Contrast the anthropogenic sources that supply nitrogen and phosphorus to the wider environment, and describe how these sources can be controlled. (Question 3.1)
- Describe how living organisms can be used as monitors of the trophic status of ecosystems. (Question 4.1)
- Compare the advantages and disadvantages of three different methods for combating anthropogenic eutrophication. (Question 4.2)
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Effects of eutrophication
- 3 Causes and mechanisms of eutrophication
- 4 Managing eutrophication
- 4.1 Measuring and monitoring eutrophication
- 4.2 Reducing eutrophication
- 4.3 Reducing the nutrient source
- 4.3 Reducing the nutrient source, continued
- 4.4 Reducing nutrient availability
- 5 Summary
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn and track your progress. Make your learning visible!
Eutrophication describes the biological effects of an increase in the concentration of nutrients. The collective term ‘nutrients’ refers to those elements that are essential for primary production by plants or other photosynthetic organisms. Eutrophication is most often caused by increases in the availability of nitrogen and phosphorus, commonly present in soil and water in the form of nitrate and phosphate, respectively. However, altered concentrations of any plant nutrient may have a recognizable biological effect. Eutrophication can occur in any aquatic system (freshwater or marine), and the term is also used to describe the process whereby terrestrial vegetation is affected by nutrient-enriched soil water.
This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract relevant to The Open University course S216 Environmental science which is no longer taught by the University. If you want to study formally with us, you may wish to explore other courses we offer in this.
This is an extract from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Environmental Science courses or view the range of currently available OU Environmental Science courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Monday, 16th May 2011
Last updated on: Thursday, 21st July 2011
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements section.
- This site has Copy Reuse Tracking enabled - see our FAQs for more information.
If you enjoyed this, why not follow a feed to find out when we have new things like it? Choose an RSS feed from the list below. (Don't know what to do with RSS feeds?)
Remember, you can also make your own, personal feed by combining tags from around OpenLearn.
- Latest OpenLearn pages
- Latest pages from OpenLearn - Environmental Science
- Latest pages tagged - biodiversity
- Latest pages tagged - phytoplankton
- Latest pages tagged - ecosystem
- Latest pages tagged - algae
- Latest pages tagged - nitrogen
- Latest pages tagged - phosphorus
- Latest pages tagged - S216_1
- Latest comments on this page