Coarse (whole) and finely ground Ambersorb 1500 and coarse and fine coconut charcoal were compared as to their efficiencies in scavenging organic contaminants desorbed from sediment. Aqueous slurries of a test sediment spiked (1 ppm) with p,p???-DDE (DDE), 2,2???,5,5???-tetrachlorobiphenyl (TCB), naphthalene (NAP), or phenanthrene (PHEN), and containing 1% levels of the test carbons were treated by shaking at 35 ??C while exposed to clusters of low-density polyethylene membrane (detox spiders). Controls consisted of spiked sediments and detox spiders but no added carbon of any kind and thus represented unimpeded bioavailabilities (to the spiders). After the treatments - agitation periods from 2.5 to 60 h, depending on contaminant hydrophobicity - the exposed detox spiders were analyzed. The fine carbon of either type was more effective than its coarser variant in obstructing contaminant bioavailabilities. The finer variants of both carbons obstructed the bioavailabilities of NAP and PHEN equally well as did the coarser variants of both. Whole Ambersorb 1500 and coarse coconut charcoal were similarly ineffective in intercepting TCB and DDE. Ground Ambersorb 1500 obstructed virtually all bioavailability of all four contaminants and was far more effective than fine coconut charcoal in intercepting DDE and TCB. An additional experiment compared the effectiveness of ground Ambersorb 1500 and fine coconut charcoal in obstructing the bioavailabilities from sediment of a broad array of spiked organochlorine pesticides. The performance of ground Ambersorb 1500 was again found to be superior; the bioavailable levels of each of the 27 pesticides were markedly lower in the presence of ground Ambersorb 1500 than in the presence of fine coconut charcoal.
Additional publication details
Comparisons of coarse and fine versions of two carbons for reducing the bioavailabilities of sediment-bound hydrophobic organic contaminants