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Reconstruction of organochlorine compound inputs in the Tagus Prodelta

Mil-Homens, Mário, Vicente, Maria, Grimalt, Joan O., Micaelo, Cristina, Abrantes, Fátima
The Science of the total environment 2016 v.540 pp. 231-240
DDT (pesticide), HCH (pesticide), estuaries, hexachlorobenzene, lead, metabolites, organic carbon, principal component analysis, radionuclides, river deltas, sediments, soil, Iberian Peninsula
Twenty century time-resolved variability of riverine deposits of polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs), DDTs, hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs) and hexachlorobenzene (HCB) was studied in three ²¹⁰Pb dated sediment cores collected in a depositional shelf area adjacent to the Tagus estuary (the Tagus Prodelta). The geographic and temporal distribution patterns were consistent with discharge of these organochlorine compounds (OCs) in the area associated with the Tagus mouth. Their concentrations were not correlated with the sedimentary total organic carbon. The PCB down-core profiles were dominated by CB138 and CB153 (hexa-CBs) congeners followed by CB180 (hepta-CBs). Principal Component Analysis of the congener distributions of these compounds did not define temporal down-core trends. The ratios of DDT metabolites (p,p′-DDE/p,p′-DDT) were consistent with recent DDT inputs into the environment and/or earlier applications and long-term residence in soils/sediments until these were eroded and remobilized.