Lake Worth is a reservoir on the West Fork Trinity River on the western edge of Fort Worth, Texas. Air Force Plant 4 (AFP4) is on the eastern shore of Woods Inlet, an arm of Lake Worth that extends south from the main body of the lake. Two previous reports documented ele-vated polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations in surficial sediment in Woods Inlet relative to those in surficial sediment in other parts of Lake Worth. This report presents the results of another USGS study, done in cooperation with the U.S. Air Force, to indicate the degree of PCB contamination of Meandering Road Creek and Woods Inlet and to identify possible sources of PCBs in Meandering Road Creek and Woods Inlet on the basis of suspended, streambed, and lake-bottom sediment samples collected there in 2004 and 2006-07. About 40 to 80 percent of total PCB concentrations (depending on how total PCB concentration is computed) in suspended sediment exceed the threshold effect concentration, a concentration below which adverse effects to benthic biota rarely occur. About 20 percent of total PCB concentrations (computed as sum of three Aroclors) in suspended sediment exceed the probable effect concentration, a concentration above which adverse effects to benthic biota are expected to occur frequently. About 20 to 30 percent of total PCB concentrations in streambed sediment exceed the threshold effect concentration; and about 6 to 20 percent of total PCB concentrations in lake-bottom (Woods Inlet) sediment exceed the threshold effect concentration. No streambed or lake-bottom sediment concentrations exceed the probable effect concentration. The sources of PCBs to Meandering Road Creek and Woods Inlet were investigated by comparing the relative distributions of PCB congeners of suspended sediment to those of streambed and lake-bottom sediment. The sources of PCBs were identified using graphical analysis of normalized concentrations (congener ratios) of 11 congeners. For graphical analysis, the sampling sites were divided into three groups with each group associated with one of the three outfalls sampled: SSO, OF4, and OF5. The variations of normalized PCB congener concentrations from Woods Inlet, from outfalls along Meandering Road Creek, and from streambed sediment sampling sites along Meandering Road Creek generally form similar patterns within sample groups, which is indicative of a common source of PCBs to each group. Overall, the variations in congener ratios indicate that PCBs in surficial lake-bottom sediment of Woods Inlet probably entered Woods Inlet primarily from Meandering Road Creek, and that runoff from AFP4 is a prominent source of PCBs in Meandering Road Creek. Sixteen of the 20 box core sites in Woods Inlet had lower PCB concentrations in the 2006 cores compared to those in the 2003 cores.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Degree of Contamination and Sources of Polychlorinated Biphenyls in Meandering Road Creek and Woods Inlet of Lake Worth, Fort Worth, Texas, 2004 and 2006-07