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A COMBINED FIELD AND LABORATORY STUDY ON ACTIVATED CARBON-BASED THIN LAYER CAPPING IN A PCB-CONTAMINATED BOREAL LAKE
Abel, S. and J. Akkanen.
Environmental Science & Technology 52(8):4702-4710(2018)

Applying a strong sorbent like activated carbon (AC) directly to the surface of contaminated sediment can greatly reduce the bioavailability of organic pollutants. To evaluate the method under realistic field conditions, a 300 m2 plot in PCB-contaminated Lake Kernaalanjarvi, Finland, was amended with an AC cap (1.6 kgAC/m2). During the 14-month monitoring period, the study lake showed highly dynamic sediment movements, which led to poor retention and rapid burial of the AC cap under a layer of contaminated sediment from adjacent sites. As a result, the measured impact of the AC amendment was low; both the benthic community structure and PCB bioaccumulation were similar on the plot and in surrounding reference sites. Corresponding follow-up lab studies using Lumbriculus variegatus and Chironomus riparius showed that long-term remediation success is possible, even when an AC cap is covered with contaminated sediment. To retain measurable effectiveness (reduction in contaminant bioaccumulation), a sufficient intensity and depth of bioturbation is required. This paper is Open Access at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/acs.est.7b05114.



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