Riverine fluxes of several pesticides and other organic contaminants from above the fall line of the Susquehanna River basin to northern Chesapeake Bay, USA, were quantified in 1994. Base flow and storm flow samples collected at the fall line of the river from February to December 1994 were analyzed for both dissolved and particulate phase contaminants. Measured concentrations of the organonitrogen and organophosphorus pesticides varied mainly in response to the timing of their application to agricultural fields. Conversely, the concentrations of the more particle-sorptive contaminants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine (OC) insecticides, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were more directly correlated with river flow throughout the year. Annual fluxes were almost entirely in the dissolved phase for the organonitrogen and organophosphorus pesticides, distributed between the dissolved and particulate phases for the PCBs and OC insecticides, and primarily in the particulate phase for the PAHs.
Additional publication details
Seasonal concentrations of organic contaminants at the fall line of the Susquehanna River basin and estimated fluxes to northern Chesapeake Bay, USA