[Distribution patterns of heavy metals in surficial sediment and their influence on the environment quality of the intertidal flat of Luoyuan Bay, Fujian coast]

Wen-Hua Gao, Yong-Fen Du, Dan-Dan Wang, Shu Gao
Huan Jing Ke Xue= Huanjing Kexue 2012, 33 (9): 3097-103
Intertidal flats represent a typical environmentally fragile and sensitive zone. In order to investigate the environmental quality of the intertidal zone in Luoyuan Bay, field survey was carried out in 2009. Contents of heavy metals (Co, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, V and Zn) in the surficial sediment were measured using an inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometer (ICP-OES). Moreover, the impact on the environment quality was evaluated with the potential ecological risk method. The average contents of the heavy metals Co, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, V and Zn in the surficial sediment were 20.48, 77.82, 23.24, 40.67, 36.25, 134.75 and 111.21 mg x kg(-1), respectively. The heavy metal contents in the Spartina alterniflora salt-marsh were apparently higher than those in the bare flat. Further, the heavy metal concentrations found in the present study were generally higher than the background values of the coastal regions of Fujian Province, but lower than those associated with the Pearl River estuary. According to principal component and correlation analyses, industrial wastewater, mineral exploration and degradation of organic matter were the main sources of heavy metals in the area investigated. The results of potential ecological risk evaluation indicated that the intertidal zone as a whole can be ranked as "moderate potential ecological risk". Ni and Co were the major pollutants among the metals in consideration; the pollution related to Pb was less significant. The level of potential ecological risk of the Spartina alterniflora slat-marsh was higher than that of the bare flat. The sequence of potential ecological risk for the heavy metals was Ni > Co > Cu > Pb > Cr > V > Zn.

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