Author(s): Tsutsumi S, Yamaguchi Y, Nishida I, Akiyama K, Zakaria MP,
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Abstract Alkylbenzenes, molecular markers of sewage, were measured in 34 green mussels collected from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and the Philippines together with blue mussels collected from Tokyo Bay, Japan. Linear alkylbenzene (LAB) concentrations in South and South East Asian countries ranged from 10 to 1,640 ng-sigmaLAB/g-dry tissue. In some populous cities, LAB concentrations were similar or higher than those found in northern Tokyo Bay which is heavily impacted by sewage effluents. I/E ratios (a ratio of internal to external isomers of LABs) in the South and South East Asian countries (1-3) were much lower than those in Tokyo Bay (3-8), indicating sewage discharged in the coastal zone is poorly treated (e.g., raw sewage and/or primary effluents). Alkylbenzenes with branched alkyl chains, tetrapropylene-based alkylbenzenes, were also detected in mussels from Indonesia and Philippines. This "tell-tale" sign indicates that poorly degradable detergents are still in use in this area, although they have long been phased-out in many industrialized countries.
This article was published in Mar Pollut Bull
and referenced in International Journal of Waste Resources