Phosphorus release rates from sediments and pollutant characteristics in Han River, Seoul, Korea

ArticleinScience of The Total Environment 321(1-3):115-25 · May 2004with20 Reads
Impact Factor: 4.10 · DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2003.08.018 · Source: PubMed


    The Han River is 469.7-km long and drains a 26219-km(2) watershed. The sediments in the river are highly polluted due to inputs from upstream tributaries as well as partially treated municipal wastewaters that are discharged to the river. The water quality and strategy for control are important because the river is the primary drinking water supply for the City of Seoul, as well as being a major source for irrigation and industrial water. The Jamsil submerged dam partitions the river to isolate an upstream area for drinking water, but also captures sediments. Samples from four sites were studied to determine sediment pollutant concentrations and phosphorus release rates. Phosphorus tends to desorb from sediments when the concentration of overlying water is less than 1.4 mg/l. Water column P concentrations range from 0.04 to 0.1 mg/l, which suggests that sediments will act as a P source. In a series of batch experiments, P was released at approximately 15-20 mg/m(2)week in the winter (1-5 degrees C) and as much as 90 mg/m(2)week in the summer (20-24 degrees C), and is also a function of pH and dissolved oxygen concentration. The sediment total phosphorus concentration, which averages 833 mg/kg, is evenly distributed among non-apatite-P (33%), apatite-P (32%) and residual-P (34%). An equilibrium model is proposed to describe release rate.