ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.144, pp.169-178, 2008 (SCI-Expanded)
Sediment quality data provide essential information for evaluating ambient environmental quality conditions. An evaluation is presented of heavy metal pollution, on the basis of statistical analysis of metal concentrations from the sediments of the Gulf of Gemlik, southeastern Marmara Sea, Turkey, which has been subject to high levels of pollution. The ranges for heavy metal concentrations (Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn) at the <63 mu m grain size were higher when compared with those obtained from >63 mu m fractions. Not only large industrialized seaports but also resort areas throughout the Gulf are flagged as hotspots for elevated concentrations, generally higher compared to those from the other Turkish marine environment. The highest concentrations of Cr, Pb and Ni were measured in the outer part of the Gulf, while the highest concentrations of Cu were documented offshore the main rivers. While the concentrations of Cr, Fe, Mn and Ni in some stations approach the severe effect level given in various sediment quality guidelines, the concentrations of the most human-related metals (Cd and Zn) in the mussels collected from the Port Mudanya were higher than the acceptable values for human consumption set by various healthy organizations.