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Status, distribution and ecological risk of organochlorines (OCs) in the surface sediments from the Ravi River, Pakistan

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


  • Jabir Hussain Syed
  • Riffat Naseem Malik
  • Jun Li
  • Chakra Chaemfa
  • Gan Zhang
  • Kevin C. Jones
Journal publication date15/02/2014
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Number of pages8
Original languageEnglish


Organochlorines (OCs) including organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCBs) were analyzed in surface sediments from the Ravi River, Punjab, Pakistan. Among the OCPs, hexachlorocyclohexane (HCHs), dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDTs) and chlordane (cis- and trans-) were most abundant and their concentrations were ranged from n.d to 16.0 ng g(-1), 1.5 to 58.5 ng g(-1) and n.d to 29.0 ng g(-1), respectively. Concentrations of Σ31PCBs ranged from 4.6 to 424.3 ng g(-1) with a mean value of 48.9 ng g(-1). In general, the concentrations of all studied organochlorines (OCs) in sediments collected from the sampling sites in the vicinity of industrial areas were higher than those from the agricultural areas. Compositional analyses of PCBs indicated that penta- and tetra-PCBs homologues were dominant which was consistent with the previous studies. Compared with other areas around the world, levels of OCs in sediments from the Ravi River were within the range, but were found to be much higher than previously reported from Pakistan. According to established sediment quality guidelines (SQGs), screening-level risk assessment of OCPs and PCBs suggested that they have a potential for adverse effects on benthic organisms.