History of metal contamination in Lake Illawarra, NSW, Australia

Larissa Schneider, Bill MAHER, Jaimie Potts, Graeme Batley, Anne TAYLOR, Anthony Chariton, Atun Zawadzki, Henk Heijnis, Bernd GRUBER

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    9 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Lake Illawarra has a long history of sediment contamination, particularly by metals, as a result of past and current industrial operations and land uses within the catchment. In this study, we examined the history of metal contamination in sediments using metal analysis and 210Pb and 137Cs dating. The distributions of copper, zinc, arsenic, selenium, cadmium and lead concentrations within sediment cores were in agreement with historical events in the lake, and indicated that metal contamination had been occurring since the start of industrial activities in Port Kembla in the late 1800s. Most metal contamination, however, has occurred since the 1960s. Sedimentation rates were found to be 0.2cmyear-1 in Griffins Bay and 0.3cmyear-1 in the centre of the lake. Inputs from creeks bringing metals from Port Kembla in the northeast of the lake and a copper slag emplacement from a former copper refinery on the Windang Peninsula were the main sources of metal inputs to Lake Illawarra. The metals of highest concern were zinc and copper, which exceeded the Australian and New Zealand sediment quality guideline values at some sites. Results showed that while historical contamination persists, current management practices have resulted in reduced metal concentrations in surface sediments in the depositional zones in the centre of the lake.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)377-386
    Number of pages10
    JournalChemosphere
    Volume119
    Issue number49
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

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    Lakes
    Contamination
    Metals
    metal
    lake
    Sediments
    history
    Copper
    copper
    Zinc
    sediment
    Metal analysis
    zinc
    contamination
    Arsenic
    Selenium
    Practice Management
    Cadmium
    Sedimentation
    Land use

    Cite this

    Schneider, Larissa ; MAHER, Bill ; Potts, Jaimie ; Batley, Graeme ; TAYLOR, Anne ; Chariton, Anthony ; Zawadzki, Atun ; Heijnis, Henk ; GRUBER, Bernd. / History of metal contamination in Lake Illawarra, NSW, Australia. In: Chemosphere. 2015 ; Vol. 119, No. 49. pp. 377-386.
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    title = "History of metal contamination in Lake Illawarra, NSW, Australia",
    abstract = "Lake Illawarra has a long history of sediment contamination, particularly by metals, as a result of past and current industrial operations and land uses within the catchment. In this study, we examined the history of metal contamination in sediments using metal analysis and 210Pb and 137Cs dating. The distributions of copper, zinc, arsenic, selenium, cadmium and lead concentrations within sediment cores were in agreement with historical events in the lake, and indicated that metal contamination had been occurring since the start of industrial activities in Port Kembla in the late 1800s. Most metal contamination, however, has occurred since the 1960s. Sedimentation rates were found to be 0.2cmyear-1 in Griffins Bay and 0.3cmyear-1 in the centre of the lake. Inputs from creeks bringing metals from Port Kembla in the northeast of the lake and a copper slag emplacement from a former copper refinery on the Windang Peninsula were the main sources of metal inputs to Lake Illawarra. The metals of highest concern were zinc and copper, which exceeded the Australian and New Zealand sediment quality guideline values at some sites. Results showed that while historical contamination persists, current management practices have resulted in reduced metal concentrations in surface sediments in the depositional zones in the centre of the lake.",
    author = "Larissa Schneider and Bill MAHER and Jaimie Potts and Graeme Batley and Anne TAYLOR and Anthony Chariton and Atun Zawadzki and Henk Heijnis and Bernd GRUBER",
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    Schneider, L, MAHER, B, Potts, J, Batley, G, TAYLOR, A, Chariton, A, Zawadzki, A, Heijnis, H & GRUBER, B 2015, 'History of metal contamination in Lake Illawarra, NSW, Australia', Chemosphere, vol. 119, no. 49, pp. 377-386. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2014.06.058

    History of metal contamination in Lake Illawarra, NSW, Australia. / Schneider, Larissa; MAHER, Bill; Potts, Jaimie; Batley, Graeme; TAYLOR, Anne; Chariton, Anthony; Zawadzki, Atun; Heijnis, Henk; GRUBER, Bernd.

    In: Chemosphere, Vol. 119, No. 49, 2015, p. 377-386.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    AU - Schneider, Larissa

    AU - MAHER, Bill

    AU - Potts, Jaimie

    AU - Batley, Graeme

    AU - TAYLOR, Anne

    AU - Chariton, Anthony

    AU - Zawadzki, Atun

    AU - Heijnis, Henk

    AU - GRUBER, Bernd

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    N2 - Lake Illawarra has a long history of sediment contamination, particularly by metals, as a result of past and current industrial operations and land uses within the catchment. In this study, we examined the history of metal contamination in sediments using metal analysis and 210Pb and 137Cs dating. The distributions of copper, zinc, arsenic, selenium, cadmium and lead concentrations within sediment cores were in agreement with historical events in the lake, and indicated that metal contamination had been occurring since the start of industrial activities in Port Kembla in the late 1800s. Most metal contamination, however, has occurred since the 1960s. Sedimentation rates were found to be 0.2cmyear-1 in Griffins Bay and 0.3cmyear-1 in the centre of the lake. Inputs from creeks bringing metals from Port Kembla in the northeast of the lake and a copper slag emplacement from a former copper refinery on the Windang Peninsula were the main sources of metal inputs to Lake Illawarra. The metals of highest concern were zinc and copper, which exceeded the Australian and New Zealand sediment quality guideline values at some sites. Results showed that while historical contamination persists, current management practices have resulted in reduced metal concentrations in surface sediments in the depositional zones in the centre of the lake.

    AB - Lake Illawarra has a long history of sediment contamination, particularly by metals, as a result of past and current industrial operations and land uses within the catchment. In this study, we examined the history of metal contamination in sediments using metal analysis and 210Pb and 137Cs dating. The distributions of copper, zinc, arsenic, selenium, cadmium and lead concentrations within sediment cores were in agreement with historical events in the lake, and indicated that metal contamination had been occurring since the start of industrial activities in Port Kembla in the late 1800s. Most metal contamination, however, has occurred since the 1960s. Sedimentation rates were found to be 0.2cmyear-1 in Griffins Bay and 0.3cmyear-1 in the centre of the lake. Inputs from creeks bringing metals from Port Kembla in the northeast of the lake and a copper slag emplacement from a former copper refinery on the Windang Peninsula were the main sources of metal inputs to Lake Illawarra. The metals of highest concern were zinc and copper, which exceeded the Australian and New Zealand sediment quality guideline values at some sites. Results showed that while historical contamination persists, current management practices have resulted in reduced metal concentrations in surface sediments in the depositional zones in the centre of the lake.

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