Determination of organochlorine compounds in coastal marine sediments from the southern west of the Mediterranean Sea|
Fouial-Djebbar, D.; Ahmed, A. Y. Badjah-Hadj & Budzinski, H.
Recent evidence suggests that polychlorinated biphenyls might also have adverse reproductive,
developmental and endocrine effects. Although, the use of polychlorobiphenyls in Algeria has been banned for more
than two decades, large quantities of these compounds containing products remain disseminated, mainly stored in
obsolete or damaged equipments. This research describes a study to assess polychlorinated biphenyls distribution in
marine sediments collected from the seaside of Tamentfoust touristic resort located in the eastern side of Algiers Bay.
After microwave-assisted extraction and purification with both concentrated sulphuric acid and activated silica gel, the
extracts were analyzed by gas chromatography with an electron capture detector. Relatively high contamination levels
of polychlorinated biphenyls were found in samples collected from the port of Tamentfoust (15 to 70 ng/g d.w.), while
the concentrations were lower in the stations located outside the port (0 to 26 ng/g d.w.). Compared with data
previously reported by some other researchers, the polychlorobiphenyls concentrations found in this work showed an
environmental persistence, but a decrease of approximately 5 times in 30 year i.e since the ban of the use of polychlorinated
biphenyls. The predominant polychlorinated biphenyls congeners in all sediment samples were polychlorinated
biphenyls138, 153, 180 and 187. This composition was similar to industrial mixture (Aroclor 1260). This probably
indicated that the contamination originated from the port and has a continental source.
Environment; Extraction; Gas chromatography; Polychlorinated biphenyls