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Open AccessArticle

Geochemical Fractionation and Assessment of Probabilistic Ecological Risk of Potential Toxic Elements in Sediments Using Monte Carlo Simulations

1
Centre of Excellence in Environmental Chemistry and Engineering–ICTM, University of Belgrade, Njegoševa 12, 11158 Belgrade, Serbia
2
Institute of Physics, University of Belgrade, Pregrevica 118, 11080 Zemun, Serbia
3
Faculty of Chemistry, University of Belgrade, Studentski trg 12-16, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Molecules 2019, 24(11), 2145; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24112145
Received: 15 April 2019 / Revised: 16 May 2019 / Accepted: 21 May 2019 / Published: 6 June 2019
The need for further research into potentially toxic elements in Serbian rivers led to an investigation of distributions, sources, and ecological risks in a sample base of sediments from 15 rivers. The analyses were carried out through both experimental and theoretical methods. Geochemical fractionation of Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb, As, V, and Zn in sediments was studied using a sequential extraction procedure. Both a Håkanson risk index (RI) and a Monte Carlo simulation (MCS) were used in order to estimate ecological risk, applying the probability distribution of RI values instead of single-point calculations. In order to both further the development of the used method and include additional processes, software for the simulations was developed instead of using proprietary solutions. Metal fractionation showed high percentage recoveries of Cd, Cr, Co, Cu, Fe, Ni, and V in residual fractions. The high content of Pb, Mn, and Zn in mobile fractions might cause serious environmental concerns. In some localities, Cu and Cd could be problematic elements, since their mobility was high. An environmental assessment based on the described criteria provided risk levels varying from low to median (mainly contributed by Cd and Cu). View Full-Text
Keywords: geochemical fractionation; probabilistic ecological risk; Monte Carlo simulation; toxic elements; sediments; hierarchical clustering geochemical fractionation; probabilistic ecological risk; Monte Carlo simulation; toxic elements; sediments; hierarchical clustering
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sakan, S.; Sakan, N.; Popović, A.; Škrivanj, S.; Đorđević, D. Geochemical Fractionation and Assessment of Probabilistic Ecological Risk of Potential Toxic Elements in Sediments Using Monte Carlo Simulations. Molecules 2019, 24, 2145.

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