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Volume 43, Issue 3


Geostatistical methods for estimation of toxicity of marine bottom sediments based on the Gdańsk Basin area

Maria Witt
  • Department of Marine Chemistry and Environmental Protection, Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdańsk, Al. Marszałka Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378, Gdynia, Poland
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/ Marta Kobusińska
  • Department of Marine Chemistry and Environmental Protection, Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdańsk, Al. Marszałka Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378, Gdynia, Poland
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/ Joanna Maciak
  • Department of Marine Chemistry and Environmental Protection, Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdańsk, Al. Marszałka Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378, Gdynia, Poland
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/ Elżbieta Niemirycz
  • Department of Marine Chemistry and Environmental Protection, Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdańsk, Al. Marszałka Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378, Gdynia, Poland
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Published Online: 2014-10-29 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s13545-014-0139-6


Toxicity assessment of environmental compartments, in particular sediments as a highly complex matrix, provides a more direct way to assess potential adverse effects of pollutants present in a sample in contrast to chemical analysis estimating only a quantitative level of xenobiotics. Interactions between chemicals, formations of derivatives and the influence of chemical properties of sediments such as the organic matter content causing the intensified sorption of hydrophobic pollutants suggest that a traditional approach to the sediment quality, based only on chemical analysis may be insufficient. The presented study describes the vertical and horizontal variability of toxicity of Gdańsk Basin sediments. Based on 128 surface sediments samples and using geostatistical methods, a prediction map for the EC50 parameter was created. This allowed the evaluation of the toxicity of the surface sediment layer at any selected point of the study area. The applied analysis can be functional for many other locations worldwide. In the present study, the hypothesis about the location of toxic sediments in the vicinity of Gdańsk Deep, outer Puck Bay and close to Vistula River mouth was further confirmed.

Keywords: toxicity; bottom sediment; Microtox; geostatistical analysis; ordinary kriging

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Published Online: 2014-10-29

Published in Print: 2014-09-01

Citation Information: Oceanological and Hydrobiological Studies, Volume 43, Issue 3, Pages 247–256, ISSN (Online) 1897-3191, ISSN (Print) 1730-413X, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s13545-014-0139-6.

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