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The relation between spectral reflectance and dissolved organic carbon in lake water: Kejimkujik National Park, Nova Scotia, Canada

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The ability to predict dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations based on spectral reflectance of lake water was examined in Kejimkujik National Park. Spectral reflectance from both ground and satellite remote sensing platforms were used to create regression models for the prediction of DOC with r2 values of 0.94 and 0.72 respectively. The location of the peak wavelength of the ground spectral measurements and a cluster analysis of the satellite measurements both separated the lakes into two distinct groups with different DOC concentrations. An analysis of the potential sources of DOC identified three variables important for the prediction of DOC concentrations within the lake, flushing rate and the area of both deciduous forest and open area within the watershed (r2 = 0.41). As DOC concentrations are related to mercury concentrations (r2 = 0.86) these models could be used to assist in the identification of lakes that are sensitive to mercury pollution.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Geological Survey of Canada, 601 Booth Street, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1A 0E8; e-mail:

Publication date: 2003-03-01

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