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Analysis of heavy metal concentrations in sediments of selected estuaries of Malaysia—a statistical assessment


Statistical analysis of heavy metal concentrations in sediment was studied to understand the interrelationship between different parameters and also to identify probable source component in order to explain the pollution status of selected estuaries. Concentrations of heavy metals (Cu, Zn, Cd, Fe, Pb, Cr, Hg and Mn) were analyzed in sediments from Juru and Jejawi Estuaries in Malaysia with ten sampling points of each estuary. The results of multivariate statistical techniques showed that the two regions have different characteristics in terms of heavy metals selected and indicates that each region receives pollution from different sources. The results also showed that Fe, Mn, Cd, Hg, and Cu are responsible for large spatial variations explaining 51.15% of the total variance, whilst Zn and Pb explain only 18.93 of the total variance. This study illustrates the usefulness of multivariate statistical techniques for evaluation and interpretation of large complex data sets to get better information about the heavy metal concentrations and design of monitoring network.

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Correspondence to Abbas F. M. Alkarkhi.

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Alkarkhi, A.F.M., Ismail, N., Ahmed, A. et al. Analysis of heavy metal concentrations in sediments of selected estuaries of Malaysia—a statistical assessment. Environ Monit Assess 153, 179 (2009).

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  • Heavy metal
  • Sediments
  • Estuary
  • Factor analysis
  • Cluster analysis