The up-to-date concentration of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in sediment materials of Victoria Harbour was investigated so as to evaluate the pollution potential associated with the reclamation projects in Hong Kong. A total of 100 sediment samples were collected at 20 locations. Except the control point in reservoir, the PAHs concentrations were detectable levels all sites (131–628.3 ng/g, dw) and such values were higher than Dutch Target and Intervention Values (the New Dutch standard in 2016). The PAHs concentration indicating that construction waste and wastewater discharges were the main pollutant sources. Results of correlation in single cell gel electrophoresis assay (comet assay) studies also revealed that the PAHs concentration was highly correlated (< 0.01) with DNA migration (i.e. the length of tail moment of fish cells) in 5 mg/ml of PAHs. The above observation indicates that the PAHs present in the sediment may substantially effect the marine ecosystem. Although the dredged sediment can be a useful sea-filling material for land reclamation; however, the continuing leaching of PAHs and its impact on the aquatic environment need to be studied further.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Aquatic Science
- Single cell gel electrophoresis assay (comet assay)
- Victoria Harbour