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Zamyadi A.,Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal | Dorner S.,Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal | Sauve S.,University of Montreal | Ellis D.,Direction des politiques de leau | And 3 more authors.
Water Research | Year: 2013

Accumulation and breakthrough of several potentially toxic cyanobacterial species within drinking water treatment plants (DWTP) have been reported recently. The objectives of this project were to test the efficiency of different treatment barriers in cyanobacterial removal. Upon observation of cyanobacterial blooms, intensive sampling was conducted inside a full scale DWTP at raw water, clarification, filtration and oxidation processes. Samples were taken for microscopic speciation/enumeration and microcystins analysis. Total cyanobacteria cell numbers exceeded World Health Organisation and local alert levels in raw water (6,90,000 cells/mL). Extensive accumulation of cyanobacteria species in sludge beds and filters, and interruption of treatment were observed. Aphanizomenon cells were poorly coagulated and they were not trapped efficiently in the sludge. It was also demonstrated that Aphanizomenon cells passed through and were not retained over the filter. However, Microcystis, Anabaena, and Pseudanabaena cells were adequately removed by clarification and filtration processes. The breakthrough of non toxic cyanobacterial cells into DWTPs could also result in severe treatment disruption leading to plant shutdown. Application of intervention threshold values restricted to raw water does not take into consideration the major long term accumulation of potentially toxic cells in the sludge and the risk of toxins release. Thus, a sampling regime inside the plant adapted to cyanobacterial occurrence and intensity is recommended. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Farcy E.,Environment Canada | Farcy E.,Institute Armand Frappier | Gagne F.,Environment Canada | Martel L.,Center dExpertise en Analyse Environnementale du Quebec | And 4 more authors.
Environmental Research | Year: 2011

The aim of this study was to investigate the short-term effects of tertiary-treated municipal effluents on the freshwater mussel Elliptio complanata. Caged mussels were immersed during 2 weeks in a river located North of Montreal Island, upstream/downstream the outfall and in one reference site located at the beginning of the Rivière des Prairies. A selection of biomarkers was analyzed to depict changes on various physiological systems: general physiology (mussel viability, condition index and gonado-somatic index), immune status (hemocyte viability, cellularity, phagocytosis efficiency, NK-like cytotoxic activity and lysozyme activity), inflammation (cyclo-oxygenase activity), detoxification (glutathione-S-transferases activity) and vitellogenesis (alkali-labile phosphate level). The analysis of total and fecal coliform counts in water and of heterotrophic bacteria levels in mussel tissues showed that the bacteriological quality of the water strongly decreased from the reference site to the downstream site. This was correlated with a significant loss of weight and an increase of mussel mortality. Cellularity and phagocytosis efficiency were significantly increased in the downstream site compared to the reference site. Though not statistically significant, lysozyme activity was also increased. NK-like cytotoxicity, activity of the pro-inflammatory enzyme COX and the levels of ALP and MT were not significantly changed. Conversely, the municipal effluents induced a significant increase of GST activity in downstream site, indicating a stimulation of detoxification metabolism. Altogether, these results confirm that a short-term exposure to a mixture of bacterial and chemical compounds released by the wastewater treatment plant La Pinière induces adverse physiological effects in E. complanata, as observed with the modulation of immune response and induction of detoxification metabolism. © 2011.


Badjagbo K.,University of Montreal | Badjagbo K.,EST Inc | Heroux M.,Environment Canada | Alaee M.,Environment Canada | And 2 more authors.
Environmental Science and Technology | Year: 2010

Landfill-biogas utilization is a win-win solution as it creates sources of renewable energy and revenue while diminishing greenhouse gas emissions. However, the combustion of a siloxane-containing biogas produces abrasive microcrystalline silica that causes severe and expensive damages to power generation equipment. Hence, the importance of siloxane analysis of the biogas has increased with the growth of the waste-to-energy market. We have investigated an improved method for the analysis of octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4) and decamethylcyclopentasiloxane (D5) in biogas using deuterated hexamethyldisiloxane (HMDS-d18) as an internal standard with direct atmospheric pressure chemical ionization/tandem mass spectrometry (APCI-MS/MS). The use of HMDS-d18 as a single internal standard provided effective signal compensation for both D4 and D5 in biogas and improved the sensitivity and reliability for the direct APCI-MS/MS quantification of these compounds in biogas. Low detection limits (∼2 μg/m3) were achieved. The method was successfully applied for the determination of D4 and D5 contents in various samples of biogas recovered for electrical power generation from a landfill site in Montreal. Concentrations measured for D4 and D5 were in the ranges of 131-1275 and 250-6226 μg/m3, respectively. Among the various landfill zones sampled, a clear trend of decreasing D4 and D5 concentrations was observed for older landfill materials. © 2010 American Chemical Society.


Giral M.,Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal | Zagury G.J.,Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal | Deschenes L.,Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal | Blouin J.-P.,Center dExpertise en Analyse Environnementale du Quebec
Environmental Pollution | Year: 2010

Inorganic arsenic in soils poses an important environmental concern. Several studies reported an oxidation of arsenite to arsenate during its extraction from soils. The objectives of this study were to (1) identify, among published procedures, an extraction method which preserves the oxidation state of arsenic and (2) to assess the influence of soil physicochemical properties on the performance of these methods. Four extraction strategies were compared: 1) 10 M HCl, 2) 15% (v/v) H3PO4, 3) 10 mM phosphate + 0.5% (w/v) NaDDC, and, 4) 1 M H3PO4 + 0.5 M ascorbic acid (C6H8O6). Separation and analysis of As species was performed by HPLC-ICP/MS. Oxidation of As(III) into As(V) during extraction was more important in soils with high content of Mn oxides. Extraction of arsenic from soils with 1 M H3PO4 + 0.5 M C6H8O6 under microwaves was the best strategy to extract the majority of As while minimizing conversion of As(III) into As(V). © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Paquet N.,INRS - Institute National de la Recherche Scientifique | Paquet N.,Center dExpertise en Analyse Environnementale du Quebec | Lavoie M.,INRS - Institute National de la Recherche Scientifique | Lavoie M.,Laval University | And 4 more authors.
Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry | Year: 2015

Predicting metal availability and toxicity for chronic (several hours or days) metal exposure scenarios, even for unicellular algae, is a major challenge to existing toxicity models. This is because several factors affecting metal uptake and toxicity, such as the release of metal-binding exudates, changes in the kinetics of metal uptake and toxicity over time, and algal physiological acclimation to internalized metals, are still poorly understood. The present study assessed the influence of these factors on Cd uptake and toxicity in laboratory batch cultures of the freshwater alga Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata. To do so, changes in the free Cd2+ concentrations caused by the release of metal-binding algal exudates were monitored,109Cd accumulation in algal cells was measured, and Cd-induced inhibition of algal growth as a function of exposure time (from 12h to 96h) was followed. Results indicate that metal-binding exudates may decrease the proportion of the free Cd2+ ion in solution up to 2-fold, a decrease that affects Cd uptake and toxicity. Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata has the capacity to decrease net Cd uptake rate on short time scales (<24h), but this reduction in the Cd uptake rate disappeared after 24h, and Cd toxicity occurred at relatively high Cd concentrations in solution. These data illustrate some of the pitfalls of standard algal toxicity assays, which were designed for acute exposures, and suggest how robust chronic bioassays might be developed. Environ Toxicol Chem 2015;34:1524-1532. © 2015 SETAC.

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