PAHs in the Great Barrier Reef Lagoon reach potentially toxic levels from coal port activities

Burns, Kathryn A. (2014) PAHs in the Great Barrier Reef Lagoon reach potentially toxic levels from coal port activities. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science , 144. pp. 39-45.

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Abstract

In view of the controversy over expanding the coastal coal ports bordering the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) Lagoon and the World Heritage Area, I re-evaluated the data published in Burns and Brinkman (2011). I used the US EPA procedures for the determination of Equilibrium Partitioning Sediment Benchmarks (ESBs) for the protection of benthic organisms (Hansen et al., 2003), and the new proposed ANZECC/ ARMCANZ (2013) sediment quality guidelines (Simpson et al., 2013) and determined that the coastal sediments offshore from the Hay Point coal terminal and suspended sediments caught in sediment traps inshore and at the offshore coral reefs contained levels of PAHs that approach the estimates for toxicity to benthic and water column organisms. This result is discussed in relation to risks posed to the GBR ecosystem by the port practices and the imminent expansion of the Abbott Point, Hay Point and other coal terminals.

Item ID: 34868
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: coal dust, PAHs, Great Barrier Reef, suspended sediments toxicity
ISSN: 1096-0015
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2014 02:21
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050204 Environmental Impact Assessment @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960507 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Marine Environments @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960508 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Mining Environments @ 50%
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