Advertisement

Water, Air, & Soil Pollution

, 225:2090 | Cite as

Evaluation of River Water Quality: A Case Study of the Lea Navigation (NE London)

  • Deborah Patroncini
  • Fabio Veronesi
  • David Rawson
Article

Abstract

The Lea Navigation in the north-east of London, a canalized reach of the River Lea, is affected by episodes of very low levels of dissolved oxygen. The problem was detected by the Environment Agency from the confluence with Pymmes Brook (which receives the final effluent of Deephams sewage treatment works) to the Olympic site (Marshgate Lane, Stratford). In this study, possible causes and sources of the poor water quality in the Lea Navigation were investigated using algal bioassays and detailed spatial seasonal mapping of the physico-chemical parameters collected in situ. Results showed chronic pollution and identified polar compounds in the river water and high bacterial concentrations as possible causes of low dissolved oxygen levels. This study confirmed the negative impact of Deephams sewage treatment works (via Pymmes Brook) on the water quality of the Lea. However, whilst the Environment Agency had previously focused on the pollution created by the sewage treatment works, results showed evidence of other sources of pollution; in particular, Stonebridge Brook was identified as an uncontrolled source of pollution and untreated wastewater. This study demonstrates the value of conducting combined methodologies and detailed monitoring. Other possible sources include Old Moselle Brook, diffuse pollution from surface run-off, boat discharges and other undetected drainage misconnections.

Keywords

Lea Navigation River water quality Bioassay Spatial digital maps Chronic pollution Wastewater 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors would like to thank Mr. Peter Rudd from the Environment Agency in Hatfield for his help and assistance with provision of data and equipment.

References

  1. Aruoja, V. (2011). Algae Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata in environmental hazard evaluation of chemicals and synthetic nanoparticles. PhD thesis, Estonian University of Life Sciences.Google Scholar
  2. Belkin, S. (2003). Microbial whole-cell sensing systems of environmental pollutants. Current Opinion in Microbiology, 6, 206–212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Buerge, I. J., Poiger, T., Müller, M. D., & Buser, H. R. (2006). Combined sewer overflows to surface waters detected by the anthropogenic marker caffeine. Environmental Science and Technology, 40, 4096–4102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Council directive 76/160/ECC of 8 December 1975 concerning the quality of bathing water. Available at: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:31976L0160&from=EN. Accessed 27 May 2013.
  5. Daus, B., Weiss, H., & Altenburger, R. (2010). Uptake and toxicity of hexafluoroarsenate in aquatic organisms. Chemosphere, 78(3), 307–312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. DEFRA (2012). Diffuse pollution in water. Available at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/quality/water/water-quality/diffuse-pollution/. Accessed 8 Dec 2012.
  7. Directive 2008/105/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2008 on environmental quality standards in the field of water policy, amending and subsequently repealing Council Directives 82/176/EEC, 83/513/EEC, 84/156/EEC, 84/491/EEC, 86/280/EEC and amending Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council. Available at: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2008:348:0084:0097:EN:PDF. Accessed 9 Dec 2012.
  8. Environment Agency (2008). The direct toxicity assessment of aqueous environmental samples using the Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata freshwater algal growth inhibition test. Bristol, UK.Google Scholar
  9. Hillebrand, O., Nödler, K., Licha, T., Sauter, M., & Geyer, T. (2012). Caffeine as an indicator for the qualification of untreated wastewater in karst system. Water Research, 46, 395–402.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Isidori, M., Lavorgna, M., Nardelli, A., Pascarella, L., & Parrella, A. (2005). Toxic and genotoxic evaluation of six antibiotics on non-target organisms. Science of the Total Environment, 346, 87–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Källqvist, T., Milačič, R., Smital, T., Thomas, K. V., Vranes, S., & Tollefsen, K. (2008). Chronic toxicity of the Sava River (SE Europe) sediments and river water to the algae Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata. Water Research, 42(8–9), 2146–2156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Köck, M., Farré, M., Martínez, E., Gajda-Schrantz, K., Ginebreda, A., Navarro, A., Alda, M. L. D., & Barceló, D. (2010). Integrated ecotoxicological and chemical approach for the assessment of pesticide pollution in the Ebro River delta (Spain). Journal of Hydrology, 383, 73–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Lewis, M. A. (1998). Freshwater primary producers. In P. Calow (Ed.), Handbook of ecotoxicology (pp. 28–50). Oxford: Blackwell Science.Google Scholar
  14. Novak, L. L. J., & Holtze, K. E. (2005). Overview of toxicity reduction and identification evaluations for use with small-scale tests. In C. Blaise & J. F. Férard (Eds.), Small-scale freshwater toxicity investigations. The Netherlands: Springer.Google Scholar
  15. OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) (2006). Freshwater alga and cyanobacteria, growth inhibition test. Test Guideline 201.Google Scholar
  16. Perry, M., & Hollis, D. (2005). The generation of monthly gridded datasets for a range of climatic variables over the UK. International Journal of Climatology, 25, 1041–1054.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Roberts, J. F., Van Egmond, R., & Price, O. R. (2010). Toxicity of haloacetic acids to freshwater algae. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 73, 56–61.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Santos, L. H. M. L. M., Araújo, A. N., Fachini, A., Pena, A., Delerue-Matos, C., & Montenegro, M. C. B. S. M. (2010). Ecotoxicological aspects related to the presence of pharmaceuticals in the aquatic environment. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 175, 45–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Sauvé, S., Aboulfadl, K., Dorner, S., Payment, P., Deschamps, G., & Prévost, M. (2012). Faecal coliforms, caffeine and carbamazepine in stormwater collection systems in large urban area. Chemosphere, 86, 118–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Schloeder, C. A., Zimmermann, N. E., & Jacobs, M. J. (2001). Division S-8—nutrient management & soil & plant analysis. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 65, 470–479.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Silva, A., Figueiredo, S. A., Sales, M. G., & Delerue-Matos, C. (2009). Ecotoxicity tests using the green algae Chlorella vulgaris—a useful tool in hazardous effluents management. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 167(1–3), 179–185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Simpson, S. L., Roland, M. G. E., Stauber, J. L., & Batley, G. E. (2003). Effect of declining toxicant concentrations on algal bioassay endpoints. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 22(9), 2073–2079.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Snook, D., & Whitehead, P. G. (2004). Water quality and ecology of the River Lee: mass balance and a review of temporal and spatial data. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 8(4), 636–650.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Struijs, J., Van der Grinten, E., & Aldenberg, T. (2010). Toxic pressure in the Dutch delta measured with bioassays: trend over the years 2000–2009. National Institute for Public Health and the Environment. Available at: http://www.rivm.nl/bibliotheek/rapporten/607013013.pdf. Accessed 8 Dec 2012.
  25. Thames 21 (2011). A water quality analysis of the River Lee and major tributaries within the perimeter of the M25, from Waltham Abbey to Bow Locks. Available at: http://www.thames21.org.uk/Downloads/A%20water%20quality%20analysis%20of%20the%20River%20Lea%20and%20major%20tributaries%20within%20the%20perimeter%20of%20the%20M25,%20from%20Waltham%20Abbey%20to%20Bow%20Locks%20-Thames21.pdf. Accessed 8 Dec 2012.
  26. Tišler, T., Jemec, A., Mozetič, B., & Trebše, P. (2009). Hazard identification of imidacloprid to aquatic environment. Chemosphere, 76(7), 907–914.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Deborah Patroncini
    • 1
  • Fabio Veronesi
    • 2
    • 3
  • David Rawson
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Biomedical and Environmental Science and Technology (iBEST)University of BedfordshireGreat MarlingsUK
  2. 2.Cranfield UniversityCranfieldUK
  3. 3.Institute of Cartographic and Geoinformation, ETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland

Personalised recommendations