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Levels and Distribution of DDT in the Cinca River (Spain)

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The evolution over time of the levels and distribution of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) in water, surface sediments, and fish from the River Cinca (Spain), a tributary of the River Ebro, during the period 1999 to 2004, was investigated by means of gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. The sampling site corresponded to a point downstream from Monzón, a heavily industrialized town with drainage into the river. This river has historically been a source of emissions of DDT and its metabolites. The highest levels were found in 1999 and 2000, although the concentrations of organic compounds in sediments and fish have decreased since then. The levels of DDT in water were below the quantification limit during the period of study. The average composition of DDT isomers measured in sediments and fish showed the prevalence of p,p′-DDE, the product of aerobic degradation of p,p′-DDT. Concentrations in fish were compared with sediment samples, and high quotients indicate that they are highly bioavailable.

Keywords: DDT metabolites; River Cinca; fish; sediments; water pollution

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: May 1, 2008

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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