The main task of the Joint Polish-German Pomeranian Bay Project was to achieve a better understanding of the impact of freshwater discharge on this environment. The freshwater from the River Odra enters the Pomeranian Bay through four outlets. The most important of these is the River Swina, as it carries the largest volume of water exchange between the bay and the Szczecin Lagoon. This freshwater carries a large load of optically active substances: dissolved organic materials, mineral and organic sediments, as well as nutrients, which boost phytoplankton growth. The effect of riverine discharge can be traced with the use of optical methods. The elevated level of optically active components can significantly reduce the light required for photosynthesis. The Institute of Oceanology carried out a survey of selected inherent and apparent optical properties in the Pomeranian Bay in three seasons in 1996 and 1997.
Piotr Kowalczuk Institute of Oceanology, Polish Academy of Sciences / English Powstancow Warszawy 55 81-712 Sopot POLAND Website: www.iopan.gda.pl
Slawomir Sagan Jerzy Olszewski Miroslaw Darecki Ryszard Hapter