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Use of oyster, Crassostrea gigas, and ambient water to assess metal pollution status of the charting coastal area, Taiwan, after the 1986 green oyster incident

Use of oyster, Crassostrea gigas, and ambient water to assess metal pollution status of the charting coastal area, Taiwan, after the 1986 green oyster incident

Chemosphere 331(2): 2505-2532

Most of the oyster mariculture beds in Taiwan are in areas located along the west of the island. One of these areas is the Charting coast, where green oysters were found in 1986. During this incident, which became internationally notorious, mass mortality occurred in the Charting oyster beds. After this discovery, measures were taken by the authorities to counter pollution which lead to the problem. The effectiveness of these pollution control actions was evaluated in this study. Two water column indicators, particulate and sediment, and oysters were sampled and analyzed for metals (Cu, Zn, Pb, Ni) in Charting and its neighboring areas, Kuen-Shen Lake and Shin-Da Harbor, and the control area. station; Dah-Pen Wan. The current study shows that copper and zinc concentrations in both oysters and particulates significantly decreased in the Charting area, compared with concentrations found during the period of the green oyster incident. Six years after the incident, the copper concentration in oysters had fallen from a high of 4400 mu-g/g dry weight to an average of 300 +- 69 mu-g/g dry weight, figures similar to the copper concentration in 1982. The pollution control actions taken after the incident are believed to be the cause of this recovery of the coastal environment. Nevertheless, Charting still produced oysters with the highest copper and zinc concentrations among the areas investigated. Further measures currently being taken bv the government, including removing the sediment of some portions of Erhjin Chi, should be able to bring the oyster copper concentrations down to the levels similar to those observed in the neighboring area, (average concentration below 200 mu-g/g dry weight or all time maximum concentration below 500 mu-g/g dry weight).

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Accession: 022068309

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DOI: 10.1016/s0045-6535(96)00344-x

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