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Yesterday’s contamination – a problem of today? The case study of discontinued historical contamination of the Mrežnica River (Croatia)

Dragun, Zrinka; Stipaničev, Draženka; Fiket, Željka; Lučić, Mavro; Udiković Kolić, Nikolina; Puljko, Ana; Repec, Siniša; Šoštarić Vulić, Zvjezdana; Ivanković, Dušica; Barac, Fran; Kiralj, Zoran; Kralj, Tomislav; Valić, Damir (2022) Yesterday’s contamination – a problem of today? The case study of discontinued historical contamination of the Mrežnica River (Croatia). Science of the total environment, 848 . ISSN 0048-9697

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The remnants of historical industrial contamination can be detected in many aquatic ecosystems worldwide even at present time. Mrežnica is a river in Croatia that has been, for more than a hundred years, continually exposed to effluents of various industries, which have, in modern time, mostly ceased to operate. Our aim was to establish the level of current contamination and pollution of the Mrežnica river-water and sediments. The study of river contamination at three sites (reference site ; site nearby former cotton industry facility in Duga Resa – DRF ; industrial zone of Karlovac town - KIZ) in three sampling campaigns (May 2020, April and September 2021) encompassed analyses of physico-chemical water parameters, screening of 369 pesticides, measurement of metal(loid) concentrations in the sediments, and in the dissolved and particulate phases of the river-water. The sediment pollution was assessed through the analyses of total bacteria abundance (by targeting 16S rRNA genes), and their associated metal resistance genes (cnrA, pbrT and czcD) and class 1 integrons (intl1). At the DRF site, industrial organic contaminants that can be traced to textile production were detected (dye and nylon components), as well as increased levels of some metals bound to suspended particulate matter and sediments. At the most downstream KIZ site, occasional high level of industrial herbicide neburon was measured in the river-water, and metal contamination of suspended particulate matter and sediments was evident. Although, based on the comparison with legislation and literature data, the level of contamination was rather mild, the effects on microbial communities were unquestionable, confirmed by increased abundance of the czcD gene at DRF site and the intI1 gene at both industrially impacted sites. Obtained results indicated long-term sediment retention of some industrial contaminants at the places of historical freshwater contamination, and, thus, the necessity for their monitoring even after the termination of contamination sources.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: freshwater ; metal(loid) ; metal resistance genes ; pesticides ; sediment ; textile industry
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Interdisciplinary Natural Sciences > Environmental Science
Divisions: Division for Marine and Enviromental Research
Project titleProject leaderProject codeProject type
Biomolekule koje vežu metale i zdravstveni poremećaji kod slatkovodnih organizama izloženih industrijskom otpadu-METABIOMZrinka DragunIP-2019-04-2636HRZZ
Transport, sudbina i toksičnost metal(oid)a otpuštenih iz ležišta industrijskog otpada-FORtISŽeljka Fiket; Antonela Ninčević Grassino; Jelena Loborec; Sanja Kapelj; Matej Dolenec; Uroš Herlec; Gordana MedunićIP-2019-04-9354HRZZ
Antibiotička rezistencija u uređajima za obradu otpadnih voda u Hrvatskoj: naglasak na ß-laktamaze proširenog spektra i karbapenemaze-WasteCareNikolina Udiković Kolić; Stela Križanović; Ana Maravić; Marko Jelić; Josipa Kosić-Vukšić; Tamara Jurina; Marko Virta; Gisle VestergaardIP-2019-04-5539HRZZ
Depositing User: Zrinka Dragun
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2024 14:08
DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.157775

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