[Pollution distribution and potential ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in sediments from the different eastern dredging regions of Lake Taihu].Huan Jing Ke Xue. 2014 Jan; 35(1):186-93.HJ
In order to investigate the distribution characteristics of nutrients and heavy metals in sediments from different eastern dredging regions of Lake Taihu, the surface and core sediment samples at 5 sites (in East Taihu Lake and Xukou Bay) were collected in 2012. Contents of nutrients (TOC, TN and TP) and heavy metals (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb and Zn) in the sediments were measured and the pollution degrees of heavy metals were evaluated with the potential ecological risk method. The results showed that the heavy metal contents in Xukou Bay were generally higher than those in East Taihu Lake, whereas the nutrients contents showed the reverse trend. There were significant differences between the phytoplankton-dominated and culture lake regions. The concentrations of both nutrients and heavy metals decreased with increasing profile depth. Moreover, the contents of nutrients and heavy metals in the sediments of all dredged areas were lower than those in the un-dredged areas, suggesting that dredging may be a useful approach for decreasing nutrients and heavy metals loading in sediments, but its effectiveness decreased with time. Significant positive correlations were found among different heavy metals and nutrients, indicating that they were from the same pollution source. The Hakanson potential ecological risk index was applied for assessing the status of sediment heavy metal enrichment and the result indicated that sediment dredging could reduce the extent of potential ecological risk. The risk index in different sites followed the order: X1 > D1 > D3 > X2 > D2, while the risk index in site X1 of Xukou Bay was higher than that in site D1 of East Taihu Lake. And the comprehensive ecological risk grades in sites X1 and D1 were in the moderate range, while the sites D2, D3 and X2 were low.