Rhodophyta Seaweed Species as Bioindicators for Monitoring Toxic Element Pollutants in the Marine Ecosystem of Ghana

Authors: Serfor-Armah, Y.1; Nyarko, B.J.B.2; Osae, E.K.2; Carboo, D.3; Anim-Sampong, S.4; Seku, F.5

Source: Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, Volume 127, Numbers 1-4, April 2001 , pp. 243-253(11)

Publisher: Springer

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Abstract:

Six seaweed species of the Rhodophyta family were sampled for a two-year period from June 1996 to August 1998 along the Atlantic coast of Ghana (part of the Atlantic Ocean). The species were analysed to determine the levels of eleven chemical elements namely: Al, As, Br, Cd, Fe, La, Mn, Ni, Hg, V and Zn by Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA). Al, Br, Ni, and Zn were measured in all the seaweed species studied. The element Al generally showed the highest concentrations in most of the species analysed while Hg levels were the lowest. Precision and accuracy of the method have been evaluated and the detection limits also calculated. The results showed high variability in and between species, among sampling sites and times of collection. The high values of metal concentrations in the macroalgae suggest that these marine organisms can be used as biological indicators for studing marine pollution.

Keywords: biological indicators; coastal belt of Ghana; elemental analysis; instrumental neutron activation analysis; marine pollution; seaweeds

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Neutron Activation Analysis Laboratory, National Nuclear Research Institute, Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, P.O. Box LG 80, Legon-Acra, Ghana; (author for correspondence; e-mail: nnri@ighmail.com) 2: Neutron Activation Analysis Laboratory, National Nuclear Research Institute, Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, P.O. Box LG 80, Legon-Acra, Ghana 3: Department of Nuclear Engineering and NDT, NNRI/GAEC, Legon-Accra 4: Department of Chemistry, University of Ghana, Legon-Accra 5: Department of Botany, University of Ghana, Legon-Accra

Publication date: April 1, 2001

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