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Models of the Distribution of Persistent Organic Pollutants in the Marine Environment
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM).
2003 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) is a group of chemicals that are toxic, undergo long-range transport and accumulate in biota. Due to their persistency the distribution and recirculation in the environment often continues for a long period of time. Thereby they appear virtually everywhere within the biosphere, and poses a toxic stress to living organisms. In this thesis, attempts are made to contribute to the understanding of factors that influence the distribution of POPs with focus on processes in the marine environment. The bioavailability and the spatial distribution are central topics for the environmental risk management of POPs. In order to study these topics, various field studies were undertaken. To determine the bioavailable fraction of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), polychlorinated naphthalenes (PCNs), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) the aqueous dissolved phase were sampled and analysed. In the same samples, we also measured how much of these POPs were associated with suspended particles. Different models, which predicted the phase distribution of these POPs, were then evaluated. It was found that important water characteristics, which influenced the solid-water phase distribution of POPs, were particulate organic matter (POM), particulate soot (PSC), and dissolved organic matter (DOM). The bioavailable dissolved POP-phase in the water was lower when these sorbing phases were present. Furthermore, sediments were sampled and the spatial distribution of the POPs was examined. The results showed that the concentration of PCDD/Fs, and PCNs were better described using PSC- than using POM-content of the sediment. In parallel with these field studies, we synthesized knowledge of the processes affecting the distribution of POPs in a multimedia mass balance model. This model predicted concentrations of PCDD/Fs throughout our study area, the Grenlandsfjords in Norway, within factors of ten. This makes the model capable to validate the effect of suitable remedial actions in order to decrease the exposure of these POPs to biota in the Grenlandsfjords which was the aim of the project. Also, to evaluate the influence of eutrophication on the marine occurrence PCB data from the US Musselwatch and Benthic Surveillance Programs are examined in this thesis. The dry weight based concentrations of PCB in bivalves were found to correlate positively to the organic matter content of nearby sediments, and organic matter based concentrations of PCB in sediments were negatively correlated to the organic matter content of the sediment.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Institutionen för systemekologi , 2003. , 42 p.
Keyword [en]
persistent organic pollutants, mass balance models, fugacity models, eutrophication, PCDD/F, PCB, PCN, soot carbon.
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-11ISBN: 91-7265-665-4 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-11DiVA: diva2:189417
Public defence
2003-06-05, De Geersalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 8 A, Stockholm, 13:00
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2003-09-23 Created: 2003-09-23Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Validating Possible Effects of Eutrophication Using PCB Concentrations in Bivalves and Sediment of the US Musselwatch and Benthic Surveillance Programs.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Validating Possible Effects of Eutrophication Using PCB Concentrations in Bivalves and Sediment of the US Musselwatch and Benthic Surveillance Programs.
2000 (English)In: Ambio, ISSN 0044-7447, Vol. 29, no 4-5, 246-251 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In order to examine the possible interactions of eutrophication and hydrophobic organic contaminants, data for polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations (C-PCB) in three species of bivalves and in sediments were examined. These were correlated to total organic carbon content of sediments (TOCsed), which was assumed to represent the trophic status of the sampling sites. Almost all C-PCB on dry weight basis in the bivalves and in the sediments were positively linearly correlated to TOCsed. Regarding the sediments, this simply reflects the high affinity of these compounds for TOC, but for the bivalves the correlation was not explained. In the bivalves, the difference in PCB homologue concentration was positively linearly correlated to TOCsed. To understand these field data, a box model was used to simulate the fate of PCB in oligotrophic, mesotrophic, eutrophic, and hypertrophic marine environments. The calculated results qualitatively predicted the change in C-PCB for the sediment correctly. For increased trophic status of the water compartment, on a scale from oligo- to hypertrophic, the model predicted decreasing fugacities for the PCBs, and thus could not support the observations of increased bivalve C-PCB seen in the field data study. It was suggested that the PCB pattern change in the bivalves could be influenced by algae-growth dynamics in the watercolumn. This would selectively intensify the washout of the lighter chlorinated homologues from the water and, thereby, decrease their concentrations in the bivalves.

Keyword
POLYCHLORINATED BIPHENYL CONGENERS; SEA BLUE MUSSELS; MYTILUS-EDULIS; BALTIC-SEA; ORGANIC-CARBON; KINETICS; BIOACCUMULATION; FLUXES; MATTER; ALGAE
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-22769 (URN)
Note
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-11Available from: 2003-09-23 Created: 2003-09-23 Last updated: 2009-10-07Bibliographically approved
2. Soot-Carbon Influenced Distribution of PCDD/F in the Marine Environment of the Grenlandsfjords, Norway
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Soot-Carbon Influenced Distribution of PCDD/F in the Marine Environment of the Grenlandsfjords, Norway
Show others...
2002 (English)In: Environmental Science and Technology, ISSN 0013-936X, Vol. 36, no 23, 4968-4974 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The particle associations of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) were studied in both the water column and the surface sediments of a marine fjord system and were found to poorly obey expectations from the organic matter partitioning (OMP) paradigm. The field observations were instead consistent with the presence of a stronger sorbent subdomain such as pyrogenic soot-carbon (SC) playing an important role in affecting the environmental distribution and fate of PCDD/Fs. Solid-water distribution coefficients (Kd) of PCDD/Fs actually observed in the water column were several orders of magnitude above predictions from a commonly used OMP model. Even when these elevated Kd values were normalized to the particulate organic carbon (POC) content (i.e., KOC), the variability in KOC for individual PCDD/Fs at different fjord locations and seasons of factors 100-1000 suggested that bulk organic matter was not the governing sorbent domain of the suspended particles. Further, POC-normalized particle concentrations of PCDD/Fs (COC) in a vertical profile (surface water-bottom water-surface sediment) revealed a strong increasing trend with depth. Factors of about 100 higher COC for all PCDD/Fs in the sediment than in the surface water could not be explained by higher fugacity in the surrounding deep water nor with C:N or δ13C indexes of selective aging of the bulk organic matter. Instead this was hypothesized to reflect selective preservation of a more recalcitrant and highly sorbing, but minor, subdomain such as soot. The extent of enhanced PCDD/F sorption, above the OMP predictions, was positively correlated with the SC:POC ratio of the suspended particles in surface and deep waters. Finally, the geographical distribution of sedimentary PCDD/F concentrations were better explained by the SC content than by the bulk OC content of the sediment. Altogether, these field-based findings add to recent laboratory-based sorption studies to suggest that we need to consider both amorphous OC partitioning domains and SC particles as carriers of planar aromatic contaminants if we are to explain the environmental distribution and fate of pollutants such as PCDD/Fs. (54 refs.

Keyword
fjord, marine pollution, particulate organic matter, partitioning, PCDD, PCDF
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-22770 (URN)
Note
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-11Available from: 2003-09-23 Created: 2003-09-23 Last updated: 2009-10-07Bibliographically approved
3. Distribution of PCN, planar PCB, and other POPs together with Soot Carbon and Organic Matter in the Marine Environment of the Grenlandsfjords, Norway
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Distribution of PCN, planar PCB, and other POPs together with Soot Carbon and Organic Matter in the Marine Environment of the Grenlandsfjords, Norway
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Manuscript (Other academic)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-22771 (URN)
Note
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-11Available from: 2003-09-23 Created: 2003-09-23 Last updated: 2010-01-13Bibliographically approved
4. Modelling the Fate of Polychlorinated Dibenzo-p-Dioxins and Dibenzofurans outside a large Emission Point Source in the Grenlandsfjords, Norway
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Modelling the Fate of Polychlorinated Dibenzo-p-Dioxins and Dibenzofurans outside a large Emission Point Source in the Grenlandsfjords, Norway
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Manuscript (Other academic)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-22772 (URN)
Note
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-11Available from: 2003-09-23 Created: 2003-09-23 Last updated: 2010-01-13Bibliographically approved

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