Environmental Management

, Volume 43, Issue 6, pp 1313–1320 | Cite as

Sediment Quality Assessment in the Gulf of Gdańsk (Baltic Sea) Using Complementary Lines of Evidence

  • Roberta Bettinetti
  • Silvana Galassi
  • Jerzy Falandysz
  • Marina Camusso
  • Davide A. L. Vignati
Article

Abstract

Sediments from Polish coastal environments were classified by a quality assessment approach that took into account trace metal and organic micropollutant concentrations, grain-size distribution, and organic carbon content. Generally, no benthic organisms were found at sites where sediments were classified as heavily polluted. However, areas characterized by a moderate contamination showed a variable composition of the benthic community and changing bioaccumulation patterns; therefore, no single species found in the Gulf of Gdańsk could be considered representative of the whole benthic environment. Although sediment monitoring must be considered a suitable tool to detect hot-spot pollution areas in coastal and inland waters, it should be complemented by bioaccumulation measurements to evaluate the actual risk posed by contaminants to benthic organisms. This “biological information” allows a better appreciation of the real benthic infaunal community exposure to chemicals and can usefully complement the existing sediment quality guidelines.

Keywords

Benthic organisms Bioaccumulation Marine coastal environments Probable effects level Probable effect level quotient Risk assessment Sediment Quality Guidelines 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roberta Bettinetti
    • 1
  • Silvana Galassi
    • 2
  • Jerzy Falandysz
    • 3
  • Marina Camusso
    • 4
  • Davide A. L. Vignati
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Chemistry and Environmental SciencesUniversity of InsubriaComoItaly
  2. 2.Department of BiologyUniversity of MilanMilanoItaly
  3. 3.Department of Environmental ChemistryUniversity of GdańskGdańskPoland
  4. 4.Water Research Institute, CNRBrugherio, MilanoItaly
  5. 5.Institut F.-A. ForelVersoixSwitzerland

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