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Cai J.,Zhongshan Environmental Monitoring Station | Cao Y.,Zhongshan Environmental Monitoring Station | Tan H.,Guangzhou Environment Technology Center | Wang Y.,Zhongshan Environmental Monitoring Station | Luo J.,Zhongshan Environmental Monitoring Station
Journal of Environmental Monitoring

Surface sediments collected from nine urban rivers located in Zhongshan City, Pearl River Delta, were analyzed for total concentration of metals with digestion and chemical fractionation adopting the modified European Community Bureau of Reference (BCR) sequential extraction procedure. The results showed that concentration and fractionation of metals varied significantly among the rivers. The total concentration of eight metals in most rivers did not exceed the China Environmental Quality Standard for Soil, Grade III. The potential ecological risk of metals to rivers were related to the land use patterns, in the order of manufacturing areas > residential areas > agriculture areas. The concentration of Pb in the reducible fraction was relatively high (60.0-84.3%). The dominant proportions of Cd, Zn and Cu were primary in the non-residual fraction (67.0%, 71.8% and 81.4% on average respectively), while the percentages of the residual fractions of Cr and Ni varied over a wide range (43-85% and 24-71% respectively). The approaches of the Håkanson ecological risk index and Secondary Phase Enrichment Factor were applied for ecological risk assessment and metal enrichment calculation. The results indicated Hg and Cd had posed high potential ecological risk to urban rivers in this region. Meanwhile, there was widespread pollution and high enrichment of Cu in river sediments in this region. Multiple regression analysis showed that five water quality parameters (pH, DO, COD Mn, NH 4 +-N, TP) had little influence on the distribution of metal fractionation. This result revealed that the ecological risk of metals was not eliminated along with the improvement in water quality. Correlation studies showed that among the metals, Group A (Cd, As, Pb, Zn Hg, r = 0.730-0.924) and Group B (Cr, Cu, Ni, r = 0.815-0.948) were obtained, and the metal contaminations were from industrial activities rather than residential. © 2011 The Royal Society of Chemistry. Source

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