from The Open University
Alternatively you can skip the navigation by pressing 'Enter'.
Power to the People: Episode 3: The Customer is Always RightTuesday, 1st December 2015 21:00 - BBC FourThe final episode looks at how SSE are trying to win back their customers' trust following criticism from... Read more: Power to the People: Episode 3: The Customer is Always Right
Power to the People: Episode 3: The Customer is Always RightWednesday, 2nd December 2015 02:25 - BBC Four
The Hunt: Episode 3: Hide and SeekWednesday, 2nd December 2015 02:50 - BBC Two
Catching History's Criminals: The Forensics Story: Instruments Of MurderWednesday, 2nd December 2015 23:20 - BBC Four
Ireland with Simon Reeve: Episode 2Available until Thursday, 7th January 2016 00:45
The Hunt: Episode 4: Hunger at SeaAvailable until Tuesday, 29th December 2015 17:50
Catching History's Criminals: The Forensics Story: Traces Of GuiltAvailable until Tuesday, 29th December 2015 00:00
BBC Inside Science: Astronomy Q&A, CERN and ancient genomesAvailable for over a year
Star Wars VII: Can Jediism be classed as a religion?Can Jediism be classed as a religion, or is it merely a cultural fad? Read more: Star Wars VII: Can Jediism be classed as a religion?
OpenLearn Live: 30th November 2015The man who went into space and became the Cosmos; back on Earth, why do people hate... Read more: OpenLearn Live: 30th November 2015
Basic science: understanding numbersThis free course explains how you can use numbers to describe the natural world and make sense of... Try: Basic science: understanding numbers 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.
After studying this course, 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: Monday, 24th August 2015
- 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