Erick M. Swenson

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We measured the concentration of petroleum hydrocarbons in 405 wetland sediment samples immediately before the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster led to their broad-scale oiling, and on nine trips afterwards. The average concentrations of alkanes and PAHs were 604 and 186 times the pre-spill baseline values, respectively. Oil was distributed with some(More)
Chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM) variability in Barataria Basin, Louisiana, USA,was examined by excitation emission matrix (EEM) fluorescence combined with parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC). CDOM optical properties of absorption and fluorescence at 355nm along an axial transect (36 stations) during March, April, and May 2008 showed an(More)
More than 131 x 10(6) metric tons (MT) of inorganic sediments accumulated in coastal wetlands when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita crossed the Louisiana coast in 2005, plus another 281 x 10(6) MT when accumulation was prorated for open water area. The annualized combined amount of inorganic sediments per hurricane equals (i) 12% of the Mississippi River's(More)
In the 1940s extensive floating marshes (locally called ‘flotant’) were reported and mapped in coastal wetlands of the Mississippi River Delta Plain. These floating marshes included large areas of Panicum hemitomon-dominated freshwater marshes, and Spartina patens/Scirpus olneyi brackish marshes. Today these marshes appear to be quite different in extent(More)
Wetland restoration efforts conducted in Louisiana under the Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act require monitoring the effectiveness of individual projects as well as monitoring the cumulative effects of all projects in restoring, creating, enhancing, and protecting the coastal landscape. The effectiveness of the traditional(More)
We constructed a nitrogen loading budget for the Lake Pontchartrain watershed located north of New Orleans, Louisiana (U.S.A.). Water quality measurements, discharge estimates, and literature values were used to establish the annual and seasonal variations in loading rates for total nitrogen and nitrate. The relatively stable annual loadings (million kg N)(More)
Twelve salt marshes in south Louisiana (USA) were classified as either ‘impaired’ or ‘healthy’ before a summer sample collection of above- and below-ground biomass and determination of sediment accretion rates. The above-ground biomass of plant tissues was the same at both impaired and healthy salt marshes and was not a good predictor of marsh health.(More)
We reconstructed water quality changes for 1800 to 2000 in Charlotte Harbor (Florida), a shallow subtropical estuary, by using a suite of biological and geochemical proxies in dated sediments collected in the region of a present day, midsummer hypoxic zone. The declining freshwater loading into the estuary from 1931 to the 1980s is not the probable causal(More)
An 18-year monitoring record (1978-1995) of dissolved oxygen within a region having hypoxia (dissolved oxygen less than 2 mgl(-1)) in the bottom layer was examined to describe seasonal and annual trends. The monitoring location was near or within a well-described summer hypoxic zone whose size has been up to 20,000 km(2). The monitoring data were used to(More)
Floating marshes occur over 70% of the western Terrebonne Basin, Louisiana, USA, freshwater coastal wetlands. They are of several types: A free-floating thick-mat (45–60 cm) marsh dominated by Panicum hemitomon and Sagittaria lancifolia; a thick mat marsh dominated by Panicum hemitomon and Sagittaria lancifolia that floats part of the year, but whose(More)