Assessment of sediment toxicity by metal speciation in different particle-size fractions of river sediment

Jih-Gaw Lin*, S. Y. Chen, C. R. Su

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Mobility and toxicity of metals associated with sediments are generally affected by metal speciation and granular compositions. Due to the various speciation patterns of heavy metals in sediments, it is not reliable to assess the potential toxicity of heavy metals on the aquatic environment with the total concentrations of heavy metals in sediments. The purposes of this study were to investigate the distribution of metal speciation in different particle-size fractions of sediments collected from two rivers (the Ke-Ya River and Ell-Ren River) in Taiwan, and to assess their potential toxicity to the aquatic ecosystem. Metals in the exchangeable, carbonate-bound and Fe/Mn oxide-bound forms obtained by sequential extraction were considered to be mobile and related with anthropogenic pollution. The degree of metal pollution and potential toxicity of sediments were higher in the lower reaches of both rivers. The metal speciation in sediments had a bimodal distribution over particle-size fractions. Heavy metals were subject to accumulation in the silt/clay fraction (< 25 μm) and coarse sand (420-2,000 μm). By normalizing the sum of the exchangeable, carbonate-bound, and Fe/Mn oxide-bound metals, it suggested that the potential toxicity to the aquatic ecosystem was caused by the fine sediments as well as coarse sediments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-241
Number of pages9
JournalWater Science and Technology
Volume47
Issue number7-8
DOIs
StatePublished - 12 Jun 2003

Keywords

  • Metal speciation
  • Particle-size fraction
  • Sediment toxicity

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