Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 22, Issue 9, pp 6721–6731 | Cite as

Accumulation and risk assessment of heavy metals in water, sediments, and aquatic organisms in rural rivers in the Taihu Lake region, China

  • Luji Bo
  • Dejian Wang
  • Tianling Li
  • Yan Li
  • Gang Zhang
  • Can Wang
  • Shanqing Zhang
Research Article

Abstract

Concentrations of heavy metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, and Zn) were measured in water, sediments, Ceratophyllum (hornwort), and Bellamya sp. (edible snail) from residential, mixed (industrial and commercial), and agricultural areas with rural rivers in the Taihu Lake region, China. Zn concentrations were the highest, whereas Cd concentrations were the lowest among the six metals in water, sediments, and aquatic organisms. Cd was mainly present in the acid-soluble fraction, Cr in the residual fraction, and Pb in the reducible fraction of sediments. Heavy metal concentrations in water, sediments, and aquatic organisms in the three areas followed the order of the mixed area > residential area > agricultural area. Heavy metal concentrations in aquatic organisms were not only related to total metal concentrations in water and sediments but also to metal speciation concentrations in sediments. In addition, the bio-concentration factor (BCF) values of Cr, Cu, Pb, and Zn for Bellamya sp. were higher than those for Ceratophyllum, whereas the BCF values of Cd and Ni for Bellamya sp. were lower than those for Ceratophyllum. An ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in sediments showed that Cd posed the highest ecological risk to the environment. A health risk assessment showed that consuming Bellamya sp. from the mixed area could cause a potential health risk.

Keywords

Heavy metals Sediment Rural Aquatic organisms Accumulation Risk assessment 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was supported by National Key Technology R&D Program of the Ministry of Science and Technology (no. 2012BAJ24B06).

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luji Bo
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dejian Wang
    • 1
  • Tianling Li
    • 3
  • Yan Li
    • 2
  • Gang Zhang
    • 1
  • Can Wang
    • 1
  • Shanqing Zhang
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute of Soil ScienceChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina
  2. 2.Institute of Agricultural Resources and EnvironmentShandong Academy of Agricultural SciencesJinanChina
  3. 3.Environmental Futures Centre and School of EnvironmentGriffith UniversityGold CoastAustralia

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