A model (MEPhos) for the calculation of the total phosphorus output from diffuse sources by drainage, wash-off, groundwater outflow, soil erosion and rainwater sewers as well as from point sources is presented. The model is based on a pathway- and area-differentiated emissions approach and calculates mean long-term P-inputs to surface waters. Phosphotopes are used for spatial discretization and modelling of diffuse P-inputs. Based on the modelling results “hot spots” for high P-loads can be localized and a management option for the input reduction to surface waters can be proposed which are adapted to site properties. The applicability of the model is demonstrated for two macroscale river basins in Germany (∼13,000 km2 each) with contrasting natural conditions and land use patterns.

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