Chlorinated and brominated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans in surface sediment from Taihu Lake, China

Lin Zhou, Huiru Li, Zhiqiang Yu, Man Ren, Xiangying Zeng, Ping'an Peng, Guoying Sheng, Jiamo Fu
Journal of Environmental Monitoring: JEM 2012, 14 (7): 1935-42
Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and polybrominated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PBDD/Fs) in surface sediment samples from Taihu Lake--an important water supply of the Yangtze River Delta, China--were investigated in the present study. Concentrations of PCDD/Fs ranged from 0.91 to 4.8 pg TEQ g(-1) dw (mean: 2.9 pg TEQ g(-1) dw, TEQ: Toxic Equivalent), which were all higher than the threshold effect level established by interim sediment quality guidelines in Canada (0.85 pg TEQ g(-1) dw). The levels of PBDD/Fs ranged from 0.16 to 1.6 pg TEQ g(-1) dw (mean: 0.52 pg TEQ g(-1) dw) and accounted for 5-33% (mean: 14%) of the total PCDD/Fs and PBDD/Fs TEQ. Comparatively, the abundance of sedimentary PCDD/Fs in the three regions (Meiliang Bay, Gonghu Bay, and Xukou Bay) showed a decreasing trend from the inflow region to the outflow region, while no significant difference was observed among their 2,3,7,8-PBDD/Fs levels, which suggested that the sources of PCDD/Fs and PBDD/Fs differed in this area. Principal component analysis suggested that the historical production/usage of pentachlorophenol and sodium pentachlorophenate was the dominant source of PCDD/Fs in the sediment of these regions. Although the specific sources of PBDD/Fs in the sediment of Taihu Lake were unclear, it was suspected to be due to atmospheric deposition; however, an additional study is needed to confirm this.

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