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Remediation of a watershed contaminated by heavy metals: A 2-year field biomonitoring of periphytic biofilms

Abstract : This study focuses on an industrial contamination site subjected to remediation processes since 2007 in the Riou-Mort watershed (southw st France). The purpose was to assess the first impacts of remediation on periphytic biofilms, and was performed during two years of biomonitoring. Periphytic biofilms were collected on glass slides immersed 24 days at different sites along the contamination gradient for 12 colonisation cycles. Metal contaminations (Cd and Zn) were analysed in biofilms and the evolution of diatom communities was assessed, integrating teratology quantifications. Despite remediation work initiated at the industrial site, this study demonstrated the persistence of metal contamination in water, as well as in biofilms. In addition, our data, showed that the remediation process was initially marked by an increase in metal contamination in the river, with increasing diatom community shifts. Metal-contaminated biofilms presented decreasing species diversities and were dominated by metal-resistant species such as Eolimna minima, whom abundances increased in 2010 reaching 57.2 ± 10%. No significant decrease in metal accumulation was observed and total Cd content in biofilms collected downstream the industrial site ranged from 772.7 ± 88 in July 2009 to 636.9 ± 20 μg/gDW in July 2 010. Results obtained on artificial substrates were compared with those of natural substrates and showed similar diatom communities and abundances of deformed diatoms but lower diversities. This ensured that glass slide subtrates gave a good representation of periphytic biofilm health . Finally, results were compared to studies performed before the remediation process and this did not reveal a decrease of metal accumulation in biofilms nor shifts in taxonomic composition of the communities, rather the remaining dominance of metal-resistant species such as E. minima was confirmed.
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Submitted on : Friday, May 15, 2020 - 10:09:54 PM
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A. Arini, A. Feurtet Mazel, Soizic Morin, R. Maury Brachet, Michel Coste, et al.. Remediation of a watershed contaminated by heavy metals: A 2-year field biomonitoring of periphytic biofilms. Science of the Total Environment, Elsevier, 2012, 425, pp.242-253. ⟨10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.02.067⟩. ⟨hal-02597087⟩



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