Applying EFDC Explorer model in the Gallinas River, Mexico to estimate its assimilation capacity for water quality protection

Claudia Villota-López, Clemente Rodríguez-Cuevas, Franklin Torres-Bejarano, Rodolfo Cisneros-Pérez, Rodolfo Cisneros-Almazán, Carlos Couder-Castañeda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sanitary and industrial wastewater discharged into rivers, is a general problem that occurs in most of the world and Mexico is not the exception, the main goal of this research is to determine based on simulations of pollutants concentrations, the assimilation capacity of the Gallinas River against discharges of agricultural and industrial wastewater from the cultivation and processing of sugar cane under two different hypothetical simulation scenarios, based on reproducing two well know scenarios. In sugarcane cultivation, large quantities of fertilizers are used whose main active components are based on nitrogen or phosphorus compounds, therefore, the wastewater resulting from sugarcane processing contains a high organic content from 20 to 40% of inorganic compounds, such as nitrogenous substances, organic acids, and phosphorous sulfates. For this reason, the physical–chemical variables of interest analyzed in this work are the PO4 (phosphate), NO3 (nitrate), and DO (dissolved oxygen). With the simulation results according to each scenery, it can be determined, that despite the continuous discharge of polluting elements, the Gallinas River has a good assimilation capacity thanks to reaeration processes that permit efficient recovery of the dissolved oxygen in the water column. Gallinas River is located in the region known as the Huasteca Potosina, this investigation is relevant for the region due to the River is of vital importance being the main tributary that allows socioeconomic development activities in this zone. To carry out the simulations, was used the Explorer Modeling System 8.4 (EFCD) model and was performed two samplings campaign along 15 km in the water body to calibrate the numerical model to represent the dry and wet seasons during May and September respectively named as calibration scenarios.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13023
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


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