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Climate Change Institute

Stephen Norton

Distinguished Maine Professor, Professor Emeritus, Climate Change Institute & School of Earth and Climate Sciences

Stephen Norton

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314 Bryand Global Sciences Center
University of Maine 
Orono, ME  04469-5790


I am interested in (1) the interaction of geologic materials (soil, bedrock) and surface and groundwater, (2) the impact of human activity on water quality, and (3) the paleolimnological record for changing processes in ecosystems. My current research focuses on:

1. The Bear Brook Watershed in Maine - a paired whole ecosystem study, with one catchment being chemically manipulated since 1989 and the other serving as a reference.

2. The biogeochemistry of humic waters, especially the controls of acidity, DOC, and redox conditions on aluminum and iron mobility which, in turn, control the bioavailability of P and REEs.

3. The paleolimnological record of processes controlling the bioavailability of P.

4. The impact of salt on the chemistry of soils, streams, and lakes.

5. What controls P mobility in natural and agricultural systems.

6. Linkages between P availability in lakes and Hg concentation in fish in those lakes.


  • Sutherland, J., Norton, S., and Short, J., 2018, Salinization and recovery of Lake George, New York (USA) Tributary Soils and Streams from Road Salting: Science of the Total Environ., 637-638, 282-294.
  • Doolittle, H. A., Norton, S. A., Bacon, L. C., Ewing, H. A., and Amirbahman, A., 2018, The internal and watershed controls on hypolimnetic sediment phosphorus release in Lake Auburn, Maine, USA: Lake Reservoir Manag., ttps://
  • Kopáček, J., Kaňa, J., Bičárová, S., Fernandez, I. J., Hejzlar, J., Kahounová-Hynštová,M., Norton, S. A., Stuchlík, E., 2017, Climate change increases calcium leaching from granitic alpine catchments: Envir. Sci. Tech., 51, 159-166.
  • Norton, S. A., Kopáček, J., Jacobson, G. L., and Navrátil, T., 2016, A comparative study of long-term Hg and Pb sediment archives. Environ. Chem., 13, 517-527. /10.1071/EN15114.

    For more information: Read abstract

  • Norton, S. A., Pierret, M-C, Kopáček, J., Perry, R., and Handley, M., 2016, Long-term evolution of leaching and lake sediment sequestration of rare earth elements from two deglaciated mountain watersheds. J. Paleolim. 55, #3, 209-222.
  • Kopáček, J., Hejzlar, J., Kaňa, J., Norton, S., and Stuchlík, E., 2015, Effects of acidic deposition on in-lake phosphorus availability: A lesson from lakes recovering from acidification. Environ. Sc. Tech., 49, 2895-2903.
  • Norton, S. A., Kopáček, J., and Fernandez, I. J., 2014, Acidification and Acid Rain: in Holland, H. D. and Turekian K. K. (eds.), Treatise on Geochemistry, 11, 379-414, London: Elsevier.
  • Owen, R. B., Longcore, J. R., and Norton, S. A., 2014, Characteristics of Mineral Springs in Northern Maine, USA: Northeast Naturalist, 21, 146-153.
  • Amirbahman, A., Lake, B., and Norton, S. A., 2013, Seasonal phosphorus dynamics in the surficial sediment of two shallow temperate lakes: A solid phase and pore-water study. Hydrobiologia, 701, 65-77.
  • Novák, M., Jacobson, G. L., Norton, S. A., Stepanova, M. , Grimm, E. C., Jackova1, I., and Buzek1, F., 2013, Variation in sulfur isotopes from continental and marine aerosols in a 60,000-year sediment core from Lake Tulane, central Florida, USA: Chem. Geol. 349-350, 110-116.
  • Mineau, M. M., Rigsby, C. M., Elya, D. T., Fernandez, I. J., Norton, S. A., Ohno, T., Valette, H. M., and Simon, K. S., 2013, Chronic catchment nitrogen enrichment and stoichiometric constraints on the bioavailability of dissolved organic matter from leaf leachate: Fresh Water Biology, 58, 2, 248–260.
  • Boyle, J. F., Chiverrell, R. C., Norton, S. A., and Plater, A. J., 2013, A leaky model of long-term soil phosphorus dynamics: Global Biogeochem. Cycles. DOI: 10.1002/gbc.20039.
  • Hongve, D., Haaland, S., Riise, R., Blakar, I., and Norton, S., 2012, Decline of Acid Rain Enhances Mercury Concentrations in Fish: Environ. Sci. Tech., 46, 2490-2491.
  • Jacobson, G.L., Norton, S.A., Grimm, E.C., Edgar, T., 2012, The influence of changing climate and sea level on mercury deposition in sediment over 60,000 years in sub-tropical Lake Tulane, Florida: Environ. Sci. Tech., 46, 11710-11717.
  • Fatemi, F. R., Fernandez, I. J., Szillery, J., Norton, S. A., and Rustad, L. E., 2012, Soil solution chemical response to two decades of experimental acidification at the Bear Brook Watershed in Maine: J. Soil Sci, Soc. America. (DOI) 10.1007/s11270-012-1348-5.
  • Norton, S. A., Perry, R. H., Saros, J., Jacobson, G. L., Jr., Fernandez, I. J., Kopáček, J., Wilson, T. A., and SanClements, M., 2011, The controls on phosphorus availability in a boreal lake ecosystem since deglaciation. J. Paleolimnol., 46, 107-122.


BA, Princeton University, 1962; M.A and Ph.D., Harvard University, 1967

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