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The Riparian Ecosystem Management Model (REMM) was developed, calibrated and validated for both hydrologic and water quality data for eight riparian buffers located in a formerly glaciated watershed (upper Pawcatuck River Watershed, Rhode Island) of the US Northeast. The Annualized AGricultural Non-Point Source model (AnnAGNPS) was used to predict the runoff and sediment loading to the riparian buffer. Overall, results showed REMM simulated water table depths (WTDs) and groundwater NO3-N concentrations at the stream edge (Zone 1) in good agreement with measured values. The model evaluation statistics showed that, hydrologically REMM performed better for site 1, site 4, and site 8 among the eight buffers, whereas REMM simulated better groundwater NO3-N concentrations in the case of site 1, site 5, and site 7 when compared to the other five sites. The interquartile range of mean absolute error for WTDs was 3.5 cm for both the calibration and validation periods. In the case of NO3-N concentrations prediction, the interquartile range of the root mean square error was 0.25 mg/L and 0.69 mg/L for the calibration and validation periods, respectively, whereas the interquartile range of d for NO3-N concentrations was 0.20 and 0.48 for the calibration and validation period, respectively. Moreover, REMM estimation of % N-removal from Zone 3 to Zone 1 was 19.7%, and 19.8% of N against actual measured 19.1%, and 26.6% of N at site 7 and site 8, respectively. The sensitivity analyses showed that changes in the volumetric water content between field capacity and saturation (soil porosity) were driving water table and denitrification.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Marzia Tamanna and Soni M. Pradhanang are from the Department of Geosciences.

Arthur J. Gold and Kelly Addy are from the Department of Natural Resources Science.