Distribution and accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in Hong Kong mangrove sediments

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Author(s)

  • Haowen Zhu
  • Ying Wang
  • Xiaowei Wang
  • Tiangang Luan
  • Nora F.Y. Tam

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)130-139
Journal / PublicationScience of the Total Environment
Volume468-469
Online published4 Sep 2013
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2014

Abstract

Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) have been used extensively as brominated flame retardants in various polymers, and have become serious environmental contaminants, particularly in coastal sediments. Mangrove wetlands are important coastal ecosystems in tropical and subtropical regions, and mangrove sediments are often the pollutant sinks due to their close proximity with human activities. In Hong Kong, sediment samples collected from five mangrove swamps were found to be contaminated with PBDEs and the eight measured BDE congeners, including BDE-28, -47, -99, -100, -153, -154, -183 and -209 were detected in all mangrove sediments, indicating that these pollutants were widespread in Hong Kong mangrove wetlands. Among the five swamps, relatively high concentrations of PBDEs were recorded in Mai Po mangrove swamp in the northwestern Hong Kong, which is part of the RAMSAR site but is severely influenced by the pollution from the Pearl River Delta. The depth profile of PBDEs in sediment cores collected from Mai Po also showed the inputs of PBDEs in this mangrove swamp increased year by year. In all sediments, the concentrations of BDE-209 were 1-2 orders of magnitude higher than the other congeners in the same sediment. The concentrations of BDE-209 and ∑PBDEs (defined as the sum of seven targeted BDE congeners except BDE-209) ranged from 1.53 to 75.9ngg-1 and from 0.57 to 14.4ngg-1, respectively. Among the targeted BDE congeners except BDE-209, slightly different composition was recorded among samples collected from different locations, with BDE-153 and -183 being the pre-dominated congeners. In all mangrove swamps, except Tai O in the southwest of Hong Kong, ∑PBDEs concentrations showed a common trend of landward>seaward>mudflat. The concentrations of ∑PBDEs were significantly correlated with total organic matter (TOM) content in sediments but not with the sediment particle sizes in each mangrove swamp. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Research Area(s)

  • Contamination, Mangrove, PBDEs, Pearl River Delta, Sediment profile, Spatial variations

Citation Format(s)

Distribution and accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in Hong Kong mangrove sediments. / Zhu, Haowen; Wang, Ying; Wang, Xiaowei; Luan, Tiangang; Tam, Nora F.Y.

In: Science of the Total Environment, Vol. 468-469, 15.01.2014, p. 130-139.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review