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Distribution and Potential Ecological Risk of Heavy Metals in Water, Sediments, and Aquatic Macrophytes: A Case Study of the Junction of Four Rivers in Linyi City, China

1
College of Life Sciences, Linyi University, Linyi 276000, China
2
College of Life Sciences, Zaozhuang University, Zaozhuang 277160, China
3
College of Biological Chemical Science and Engineering, Jiaxing University, Jiaxing 314001, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Xiuling Li and Henglun Shen contributed equally to this paper.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(16), 2861; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16162861
Received: 9 July 2019 / Revised: 5 August 2019 / Accepted: 7 August 2019 / Published: 10 August 2019
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Abstract

The Yi River, the second longest river in Shandong Province, China, flows through Linyi City and is fed by three tributary rivers, Beng River, Liuqing River, and Su River in the northeastern part of the city. In this study, we determined the concentrations of five heavy metals (Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, and Pb) in water, sediment, and aquatic macrophyte samples collected from the junction of the four rivers and evaluated the potential ecological risk of heavy metal pollution. Most of the heavy metals in water were in low concentrations with the water quality index (WQI) below 1, suggesting low metal pollution. The sediments showed low heavy metal concentrations, suggesting a low ecological risk based on the potential ecological risk index (RI) and the geo-accumulation index (Igeo). The aquatic plant species Potamogeton crispus accumulated considerable amounts of heavy metals, which were closely related to the metal concentrations of the sediment. The plant species Salvinia natans also showed an excellent metal accumulation capability. Based on our results, the junction of the four rivers is only slightly polluted in terms of heavy metals, and the plant species P. crispus is a suitable bioindicator for sediment heavy metal pollution. View Full-Text
Keywords: heavy metal; sediment; river; risk assessment; bioaccumulation; bioindicator heavy metal; sediment; river; risk assessment; bioaccumulation; bioindicator
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Li, X.; Shen, H.; Zhao, Y.; Cao, W.; Hu, C.; Sun, C. Distribution and Potential Ecological Risk of Heavy Metals in Water, Sediments, and Aquatic Macrophytes: A Case Study of the Junction of Four Rivers in Linyi City, China. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 2861.

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