Organochlorine pesticides, polybrominated diphenyl ethers and polychlorinated biphenyls in surficial sediments of the Awash River Basin, Ethiopia.
PLoS One. 2018 ;13(10):e0205026. Epub 2018 Oct 4. PMID: 30286178
Niguse Bekele Dirbaba
This study was initiated to document information on the levels of sediment contamination with organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Moreover, it was intended to identify compounds which impose major ecological risks to aquatic organisms. Surficial sediments were collected from 46 locations within the streams and rivers of the Awash River Basin. In total 30 compounds were included in this study: 16 OCPs, 7 PCBs and 7 PBDEs. The total concentrations of OCPs, PCBs, and PBDEs ranged from 6.63 to 206.13 ng g-1- dry weight (dw), 0.85 to 26.56 ng g-1-dw and 3.71 to 18.95 ng g-1-dw respectively. Out of all the tested OCPs, heptachlor, heptachlor epoxide, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (p,p'-DDT) andβ-hexachlorocyclohexane (β-HCH) were the most abundant in the study area. The ratio of (β-HCH/∑HCHs) indicated that HCHs were originally from earlier usage of HCH in the area whereas the ratio of (p,p'-DDT/p,p'-DDE) showed that the majority of DDT components were recently introduced into most of the sampling locations. Even though there were relatively low concentrations of PBDEs and PCBs across the sampling sites, substantial amounts of PCBs were observed in Addis Ababa City. According to the established ecological risk indices, p,p'-DDT and γ-HCH are the major concerns for potential adverse ecological impacts. This study provided the first comprehensive information on organohalogenated compounds' (OCs') occurrences, spatial distributions, and ecological risks in sediments of the Awash River Basin. Thus, the report will be very useful background information for further studies onsediment contamination with OCs' in the region. It also adds important first-hand data to the field of fresh water ecology and provides useful empirical evidence for setting pollution control priorities for an ecologically important, yet largely understudied region.