3 years ago

Occurrence, ecological risk assessment, and spatio-temporal variation of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in water and sediments along River Ravi and its northern tributaries, Pakistan

Sajid Rashid Ahmad, Yumna Sadef, Iqra Aslam, Abdul Qadir, Gan Zhang, Jun Li, Mujtaba Baqar, Adeel Mahmood


Ecological risk assessment, spatio-temporal variation, and source apportionment of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were studied in surface sediments and water from River Ravi and its three northern tributaries (Nullah Deg, Nullah Basantar, and Nullah Bein) in Pakistan. In total, 35 PCB congeners were analyzed along 27 sampling stations in pre-monsoon and post-monsoon seasons. The ∑35PCB concentration ranged from 1.06 to 95.76 ng/g (dw) in sediments and 1.94 to 11.66 ng/L in water samples, with hexa-CBs and tetra-CBs as most dominant homologs in sediments and water matrixes, respectively. The ∑8DL-PCB levels were 0.33–22.13 ng/g (dw) and 0.16–1.95 ng/L in sediments and water samples, respectively. The WHO-toxic equivalent values were ranged from 1.18 × 10−6 to 0.012 ng/L and 1.8 × 10−6 to 0.031 ng/g in water and sediments matrixes, respectively. The ecological risk assessment indicates considerable potential ecological risk during pre-monsoon season ( \( {E}_r^i \)  = 95.17) and moderate potential ecological risk during post-monsoon season ( \( {E}_r^i \)  = 49.11). The industrial and urban releases were recognized as key ongoing sources for high PCB levels in environment. Therefore, we recommend more freshwater ecological studies to be conducted in the study area and firm regulatory initiatives are required to be taken in debt to the Stockholm Convention, 2001 to cop up with PCB contamination on emergency basis.

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11356-017-0182-0

DOI: 10.1007/s11356-017-0182-0

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