Skip to main content

Chemical Speciation of Metals in Surface Sediments from Small Urban and Agricultural Rivers


Characteristic distributions of Al, Mn, Fe, Ni, Zn, and Pb were investigated in the surface sediments of a small river (Niitsu River) flowing through both urban and agricultural areas, along with comparison with those from the upper main stream (Nodai River). The mean compositions of the most mobile metals were ordered as Zn = Mn > Ni = Pb = Fe > Al in the Niitsu River. They were Mn = Zn = Pb = Fe > Ni = Al in the Nodai River. Mn, Fe, Ni, and Zn in the Niitsu River showed higher compositions of mobile (2.9 %–36 %) and oxidizable (6.6 %–16 %) phases than those in the Nodai River. The Ni and Zn in the Niitsu River also had higher reducible phase composition (15 % and 16 %, respectively). In the Niitsu River, Pb had the higher oxidizable composition (29 %). Over 90 % of Al was in the lithogenic phase in the two rivers.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2


  1. Dollar NL, Souch CJ, Filippelli GM, Mastalerz M (2001) Chemical fractionation of metals in wetland sediments: Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Environ Sci Technol 35:3608–3615

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Farkas A, Erratico F, Viganò L (2007) Assessment of the environmental significance of heavy metal pollution in surficial sediments of the River Po. Chemosphere 68:761–768

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Hu N, Zheng J-F, Ding D-X, Liu J, Yang L-Q, Yin J, Li G-Y, Wang Y-D, Liu Y-L (2009) Metal pollution in Huayuan River in Hunan Province in China by manganese sulphate waste residue. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 83:583–590

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Igari Y, Tamura T, Ohno M, Suzuki K, Kose T, Kawata K (2012) Distribution of metals in surface sediments from a small river flowing through urbanized and agricultural areas. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol. doi: 10.1007/s00128-012-0797-2

  5. Larner BL, Seen AJ, Palmer AS, Snape I (2007) A study of metal and metalloid contaminant availability in Antarctic marine sediments. Chemosphere 67:1967–1974

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Madrid F, Díaz-Barrientos E, Madrid L (2008) Availability and bio-accessibility of metals in the clay fraction of urban soils of Sevilla. Environ Pollut 156:605–610

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Ministry of Environment (2001) Bottom sediment survey methods.

  8. Morillo J, Usero J, Gracia I (2004) Heavy metal distribution in marine sediments from the southwest coast of Spain. Chemosphere 55:431–442

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Peijnenburg WJGM, Jager T (2003) Monitoring approaches to assess bioaccessibility and bioavailability of metals: matrix issues. Ecotoxicol Environ Safety 56:63–77

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. Perez–Santana S, Alfonso MP, Tagle MV, Icart MP, Brunori C, Morabito R (2007) Total and partial digestion of sediments for the evaluation of trace element environmental pollution. Chemosphere 66:1545–1553

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Yu GB, Liu Y, Yu S, Wu SC, Leung AOW, Luo XS, Xu B, Li HB, Wong MH (2011) Inconsistency and comprehensiveness of risk assessments for heavy metals in urban surface sediments. Chemosphere 85:1080–1087

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Kuniaki Kawata.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Igari, Y., Ohno, M., Tamura, T. et al. Chemical Speciation of Metals in Surface Sediments from Small Urban and Agricultural Rivers. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 89, 764–769 (2012).

Download citation


  • Metal
  • Sequential extraction
  • Surface sediment
  • River
  • Fractionation
  • Mobility