Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 87, Issue 1–4, pp 149–169 | Cite as

Trace metal composition and speciation in street sediment: Sault Ste. Marie, Canada

  • M. Stone
  • J. Marsalek


Street sediment collected in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario was examined for trace element composition (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Pb, Hg, Ni and Zn) and the metal partitioning to various sediment properties was determined by sequential extraction. Total Ni, Cu, Zn and Pb concentrations exceeded the lowest effect levels specified in the Ontario Provincial Sediment Quality Guidelines for Metals (Environment Ontario, 1992) and derived from bioassay studies. According to these Guidelines, the disposal of such sediment has to be guided by environmental considerations. A significant fraction of these metals was extractable in 0.5 N HCl over a 12-hour period and considered as potentially bioavailable. The major accumulative phases of toxic metals in this sediment are exchangeable, carbonate, Fe/Mn oxides and organic matter but the relative importance of each phase varied for individual metals. Approximately 20% of the total extractable Cd is found in each of these four fractions. Pb, Zn and Mn are predominantly bound to carbonates, Fe/Mn oxides and organic matter. Cu shows a high affinity for organic matter and to a lesser extent for carbonates. Elevated levels of Cd, Pb, Cu, Zn, Mn and Cr in the exchangeable and/or soluble phase suggest that sediment associated metals, mobilised from streets in Sault Ste. Marie during runoff and snowmelt, would adversely impact water quality in the receiving waters. However, large fractions of the total metal load are associated with coarser particles which are unlikely to be transported through the drainage system into receiving waters.


Sequential Extraction Sediment Quality Quality Guideline Trace Element Composition Soluble Phase 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Stone
    • 1
  • J. Marsalek
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Urban and Regional PlanningUniversity of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.Aquatic Ecosystem Protection BranchNational Water Research InstituteBurlingtonCanada

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