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Potential Impacts of Climate Change on the Water Quality of Different Water Bodies

X. H. Xia*,Q. Wu,X. L. Mou and Y. J. Lai

    State Key Laboratory of Water Environment Simulation, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China

*Corresponding author. Email:


Climate change will affect water quality and even water ecosystems, and specific effects will vary among different regions and different types of water bodies. Here we review the observed and predicted effects of climate change on different water bodies, including plain lakes, alpine lakes, rivers, costal lagoons, and estuaries, and provide a global perspective for these effects. First, the impacts of extreme weather events on the water quality are summarized. Then the influences of long-term climate change on the water quality of different water bodies are discussed, and how changes in climatic factors affect the water quality directly and indirectly by influencing the sources, migration and transformation, biochemical reactions, and ecological effects of pollutants. Furthermore, the methods used to determine the effects of climate change on the water quality, including model simulations, laboratory and mesocosm experiments, and long-term bioindicator monitoring, are subsequently addressed. Based on an analysis of the existing research advances, the related knowledge gaps are analyzed, and directions for further research on the impacts of climate change on water quality are put forward.

Keywords: climate change, eutrophication, salinization, aquatic species, water quality

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