Deadline extended: proposals for Letters Special Issue “Increasing Salinity in Freshwater and Coastal Ecosystems”

Deadline extended: proposals for Letters Special Issue “Increasing Salinity in Freshwater and Coastal Ecosystems”

The deadline for proposals for contributed papers to an L&O Letters Special Issue entitled, “Increasing Salinity in Freshwater and Coastal Ecosystems,” has been extended to 30 June 2020 in response to the COVID-19 situation. The original call is reposted below with updated deadlines. 


Special Issue Guest Editors: Miguel Cañedo-Argüelles (University of Barcelona), Alison Derry (Université du Québec à Montréal), Stephanie Melles (Ryerson University), and Advisory Guest Editor, Gesa Weyhenmeyer (Uppsala University)

Deadline for submission of paper proposal: 30 June 2020

We are pleased to announce that we are seeking proposals for contributed papers to an L&O Letters Special Issue entitled, “Increasing Salinity in Freshwater and Coastal Ecosystems”. Human practices and global changes are leading to alarming trends in salinity for freshwater ecosystems around the world. Despite a growing number of scientific publications, there are significant knowledge gaps in our fundamental understanding of the implications of salinity on freshwater (FW) ecosystem functioning and biodiversity. Examples of unanswered research questions include: a) How are organisms at the base of FW food webs affected when salt gradually accumulates in ecosystems? b) What is the impact of increased salinity on FW trophic interactions? c) What are the implications for ecosystem functioning and services? d) How does salt interact with other stressors such as organic and inorganic pollution and global warming?

Conceived at GLEON in 2017, the special issue will feature articles arising out of a Global Salt Experiment (GSE). The GSE was a simultaneous mesocosm experiment performed at 16 locations in the summer 2018, designed to address a lack of experimental research on the direct impacts of salt on lake ecosystems. We seek contributed articles that will complement and expand the scope of invited papers described below on the following general topics: effects of salt on freshwater wetlands; biodiversity and ecosystem function responses to salt pollution; interactions between salt and other stressors; effects of salt on aquatic organisms (e.g., fish, invertebrate, bird); groundwater salt contamination; saltwater intrusion from tidal rivers to ‘ghost forests’ inland; and modelling studies that examine economic costs and human health risks. Contributed papers may be in any of the three L&O Letters article formats (Letters, Essays, and Data Articles). Mini-review papers (i.e., Current Evidence Articles) on different causes and consequences of increasing freshwater salinity across levels of biological organization and ecosystems will also be welcomed. For more information about article types and the aims and scope of L&O Letters, see here.

Proposals for contributed papers will be evaluated by Special Issue Guest Editors (Miguel Cañedo-Argüelles, Alison Derry, Stephanie Melles, and Gesa Weyhenmeyer) based on fit within the journal scope and complementarity with invited paper themes (listed below). Please send an email with the subject heading “Freshwater-Salt-Paper-Proposal” to with a pdf of the manuscript proposal attached that includes the following information (no more than 2 pages):

  • Author(s) and affiliation(s)
  • Title, and article type (Letter, Current Evidence, Data Article, or Essay)
  • Abstract, 200 words
  • 1-page outline

Proposals must be received by 5:00 pm EST on June 30, 2020. Invitations to submit full drafts for consideration in the special issue are expected by July 30, 2020. Please note that acceptance to submit a full-draft does not guarantee acceptance of the manuscript, rather, it allows the manuscript to go through the standard L&O Letters peer-review process in consideration for this special issue. Deadline for full manuscript submission will be March 31, 2021. Please contact the special issue editors at with any questions.

Accepted papers will be published online within a few weeks of acceptance as Early View publications with DOI, and these articles will be compiled in the anticipated special issue in Spring 2022.

Invited papers will cover the following topics:

  • Regional-scale intraspecific variation in zooplankton salt tolerance among lakes
  • Ecotoxicology and community responses; sentinel species and functional groups
  • Population level adaptive tipping points in salt tolerance for naive freshwater zooplankton
  • Trophic cascades and food webs: effects of salt addition on a naïve planktonic food web
  • Road salt driven changes in zooplankton community structure leading to salt-induced algal blooms
  • From individuals to ecosystems: the cascading effects of freshwater salinization in California mountain lakes
  • Effects of salt addition on zooplankton size spectral diversity
  • Temporal prokaryote community shifts in response to a salt gradient
  • Multiple stressors: interactions between salt, nutrients, and other stressors (e.g., climate change)
  • Salinization effects on metabolic processes in lakes
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