Examining spatial patterns in polycyclic aromatic compounds measured in stream macroinvertebrates near a small subarctic oil and gas operation
- 222 Downloads
The Cameron River runs through a small, remote petrochemical development in the Cameron Hills (Northwest Territories, Canada). In order to evaluate the exposure of aquatic biota to contaminants from oil and gas activities, we measured polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) in macroinvertebrates collected from sites and tributaries along the Cameron River, including upstream and downstream of the development, and sites located near drilled wells (developed). Macroinvertebrate tissue PAC burdens ranged from 0.2–2.8 μg g−1 lipid for unsubstituted compounds, and from 4.2–63.2 μg g−1 lipid for alkylated compounds, relatively low compared to similar studies from more industrialized regions in North America. There was no significant difference in tissue PAC burdens between upstream, downstream, or developed sites (p = 0.12), although alkyl PACs in five out of seven developed sites were higher than the regional average. Petrogenic PACs were dominant in most samples, including alkyl fluorines, alkyl phenanthrene/anthracenes, and alkyl dibenzothiophenes. Minimal changes in PAC composition in macroinvertebrate tissues were detected along the Cameron River, with the exception of the two sites furthest downstream that had high concentrations of C3-C4 naphthalene. Overall, our results suggest that oil and gas development in the Cameron Hills has not resulted in substantial increases in PAC bioaccumulation in stream macroinvertebrates, although the potential that alkyl naphthalenes are being transported downstream from the development warrants further attention.
KeywordsPetroleum extraction Polycyclic aromatic compounds Plecoptera Bioaccumulation Northwest Territories, Canada
We acknowledge Paramount Resources Ltd. and the Ka’a’gee Tu First Nation (KTFN) for logistical and field support, as well as Cyndy Desjardins (University of Ottawa), George Simba (KTFN), and Melaine Simba (KTFN) for participation in field work and Nahom Berhane (University of Ottawa) for laboratory assistance. Chief Lloyd Chicot of the KTFN and Peter Redvers of Crosscurrent Consulting were instrumental in the early stages of this research, and this project is a result of their commitment to better understand the influence of upstream oil and gas development on the traditional territory of the KTFN. Funding for this research was provided by the Cumulative Impact Monitoring Program (Government of the Northwest Territories), the Polar Continental Shelf Program, and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.
- Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (2012). Northern Oil and Gas Annual Report 2011. Government of Canada. https://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1335971994893/1335972853094. Accessed 6 June 2015.
- Camus, L., Birkely, S. R., Jones, M. B., Børseth, J. F., Grøsvik, B. E., Gulliksen, B., Lønne, O. J., Regoli, F., & Depledge, M. H. (2003). Biomarker responses and PAH uptake in Mya truncata following exposure to oil-contaminated sediment in an Arctic fjord (Svalbard). Science of the Total Environment, 308, 221–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Damásio, J. B., Barata, C., Munné, A., Ginebreda, A., Guasch, H., Sabater, S., Caixach, J., & Porte, C. (2007). Comparing the response of biochemical indicators (biomarkers) and biological indices to diagnose the ecological impact of an oil spillage in a Mediterranean river (NE Catalunya, Spain). Chemosphere, 66, 1206–1216.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Development Core Team, R. (2010). R: A language and environment for statistical computing. Vienna: R foundation for Statistical Computing.Google Scholar
- Eisler, R. (1987). Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon hazards to fish, wildlife, and invertebrates: A synoptic review. US Fish and Wildlife Service Biological Report 85(1.11), 81 pp.Google Scholar
- Environment Canada (2012) Canadian Aquatic Biomonitoring Network Field Manual—Wadeable Streams. Dartmouth, NS, Canada, 57 pp.Google Scholar
- Kelly, E. N., Short, J. W., Schindler, D. W., Hodson, P. V., Ma, M., Kwan, A. K., & Fortin, B. L. (2009). Oil sands development contributes polycyclic aromatic compounds to the Athabasca River and its tributaries. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106, 22346–22351.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lafleur, A. L., Longwell, J. P., Marr, J. A., Monchamp, P. A., Plummer, E. F., Thilly, W. G., Mulder, P. P., Boere, B. B., Cornelisse, J., & Lugtenburg, J. (1993). Bacterial and human cell mutagenicity study of some C18H10 cyclopenta-fused polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons associated with fossil fuels combustion. Environmental Health Perspectives, 101, 146–153.Google Scholar
- Martinez, E., Gros, M., Lacorte, S., & Barceló, D. (2004). Simplified procedures for the analysis of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in water, sediments and mussels. Journal of Chromatography A, 1047, 181–188.Google Scholar
- Oksanen, J., Blanchet, F.G., Kindt, R., Legendre, P., O'Hara, R.G., Simpson, G.L., Solymos, P., Stevens, M.H.H., & Wagner, H. (2010). vegan: Community Ecology Package. R package version 1.17-0. http://www.cran.r-project.org/web/packages/vegan/ Accessed 6 June 2015.
- Paramount Resources Ltd. (1991). Cameron Hills Oil Development Plan. Retrieved from Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board Public Registry. http://www.reviewboard.ca/upload/project_document/EA00-004_62_1190229198.pdf Accessed 6 June 2015.
- Stewart, E. M., Coleman, K. A., Korosi, J. B., Thienpont, J. R., Palmer, M. J., Blais, J. M., & Smol, J. P. (2015). Assessing environmental stressors on a commercial walleye fishery from a large northern ecosystem (Tathlina Lake) using water chemistry and paleolimnology. Journal of Great Lakes Research. doi: 10.1016/j.jglr.2015.04.010.Google Scholar
- Strategic Oil & Gas Ltd. (2014). Cameron Hills 2013 Annual Environmental Report. Retrieved from Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board Public Registry. http://www.mvlwb.ca/Boards/mv/Registry/2013/MV2013A0010/MV2013A0010%20-%20Strategic%20Oil%20and%20Gas%20-%20Staff%20Report%20with%20comment%20table%20-%20Sept19-13.pdf Accessed 6 June 2015.
- Viganò, L., Farkas, A., Guzzella, L., Roscioli, C., & Erratico, C. (2007). The accumulation levels of PAHs, PCBs and DDTs are related in an inverse way to the size of a benthic amphipod (Echinogammarus stammeri Karaman) in the River Po. Science of the Total Environment, 373, 131–145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Wayland, M., Headley, J. V., Peru, K. M., Crosley, R., & Brownlee, B. G. (2008). Levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and dibenzothiophenes in wetland sediments and aquatic insects in the oil sands area of Northeastern Alberta, Canada. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 136, 167–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar