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The organochlorine contamination history of the Mersey estuary, UK, revealed by analysis of sediment cores from salt marshes

Citation
Fox WM, Connor L, Copplestone D, Johnson MS & Leah RT (2001) The organochlorine contamination history of the Mersey estuary, UK, revealed by analysis of sediment cores from salt marshes, Marine Environmental Research, 51 (3), pp. 213-227.

Abstract
Sediment profiles in the Banks, Ince and Widnes Warth salt marshes in Northwest England contain a mappable record of historic pollution. For persistent organochlorine compounds this stretches back over 90 years. The PCB and HCH profiles can be successfully rationalised by dating methods, and they can be related to the dates of initial production and subsequent withdrawal from use of these chemicals as a result of restrictive environmental legislation. HCB has a more complex pollution profile as it has been manufactured in Northwest England, both deliberately as a pesticide and accidentally as a by-product of several chlorination processes, dating back to the start of the 20th century. The concentrations of degradation products of DDT are relatively constant through the sediment profile and are dominated by op'- and pp'-DDD with only minor contributions from the most toxic species, pp'-DDT. The quantities of these compounds resident in the reservoir of pollutants under these marshes have been calculated, and have fallen progressively in the last 30–50 years.

Keywords
sediment cores; salt marshes; Mersey estuary; PCB; DDT; HCH; HCB

StatusPublished
AuthorsFox Winston M, Connor Les, Copplestone David, Johnson Michael S, Leah Richard T
Publication date04/2001
PublisherElsevier
ISSN 0141-1136
LanguageEnglish

Journal
Marine Environmental Research: Volume 51, Issue 3 (APR 2001)

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