Dr. Javier Castro Jiménez
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POPs occurrence in Thau Lagoon (France)

Coastal lagoons represent less than 1% of the surface covered by oceans and seas, however they are characterized by a high biodiversity and intense primary production leading to both ecological and economical considerable importance. Such is the case of Thau lagoon, one of the largest Mediterranean lagoons. Located on the French Mediterranean coast along the Gulf of Lion, it covers a surface of 75 km2 with an average depth of 4.5 m and is isolated from the Mediterranean Sea by an offshore bar. There is an intensive shell farming activity (oysters and mussels) that covers about 20% of the whole lagoon area and yearly produces about 15000 tons of oysters. Thau lagoon seems to be under intense anthropogenic pressure (urban, industrial, agricultural and shell farming activities). The biggest town (Sète) and most of urban activities are located in the Eastern part of the lagoon. A considerable increase of population in the area during the summer months is contributing to the anthropogenic impact. A better knowledge of the fate and dynamics of POPs in this semi-enclosed marine ecosystem is needed in order to apprehend their long-term impacts.


Thau Lagoon J. Castro calibrating one of the Hi-vol samplers at IFREMER-Sete

Two sampling campaigns were performer in collaboration with IFREMER (
LER/LR and LBCO) within the framework of the  European Project THRESHOLDS of Environmental Sustainability (FP6). Air (particulate and gas phases), water, sediments and mussels samples were collected in winter 2005. The main objectives of this work were to understand ambient levels and multi-media distribution of several POPs families in this ecosystem. POPs atmospheric inputs to the lagoon were evaluated for the first time.
PCDD/F congener patterns observed in air, water particulate phase and sediments were similar suggesting direct coupling among these compartments and atmospheric inputs of PCDD/Fs into the lagoon. In order to better evaluate this phenomenon, a second campaign was conducted. An atmospheric sampling site was implemented and operated for 1 year in the lagoon (2007-2008), gathering weekly integrated samples. In addition, experimental data were used for modellers from JRC and Ifremer in order to develop and validate appropriate models to support experimental measurements and better describe the system.


Sum2,3,7,8-PCDD/Fs and sum18PCBs (gas + particulate) air concentrations ranged from 67 to 1700 fgm-3 and from 13 to 95 pgm-3, respectively whereas sum8PBDEs (gas + particulate) summer time levels varied from 158 to 230 pgm-3. Concentrations in the water column were very low for PCDD/Fs (163 - 476 fg L-1) and low for PCBs (138 -708 pg L-1). PCDD/F and PCB concentrations found in surface sediment (0.15 -1.6 and 2.5 - 33 ng g-1 d.w., respectively) and mussel (13 - 21 pg g-1 d.w. and 10 - 39 ng g-1 d.w., respectively) were medium levels. Total (wet + dry) sum2,3,7,8-PCDD/Fs and sum18PCBs deposition fluxes to Thau Lagoon waters are 117 and 715 pg m-2 d-1, respectively.


Sediment core sampling Water particulate phase sample

Most relevant scientific output:


Publications:

J. Castro-Jiménez , G. Mariani, Vives I., H. Skejo, G Umlauf., J.M. Zaldivar, S. Dueri, G. Messiaen, T. Laugier (2011). Atmospheric concentrations, occurrence and deposition of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in a Mediterranean coastal site (Etang de Thau, France). Environmental Pollution 159, 1948-1956

J. M. Zaldívar, D. Marinov, S. Dueri, J. Castro-Jiménez, C. Micheletti and A. Worth (2011) An integrated approach for bioaccumulation assessment in mussels: Towards biota, Environmental Quality Standards development. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 74, 244-252.

J. Castro-Jiménez, G. Deviller M. Ghiani, R. Loos, G. Mariani, H. Skejo , G. Umlauf , J. Wollgast ,T. Laugier , K. Héas-Moisan , F. Léauté , C. Munschy , C. Tixier , J. Tronczyński (2008). PCDD/F and PCB multi-media ambient concentrations, congener patterns and occurrence in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon (Etang de Thau, France). Environmental Pollution 156, 123-135.

Castro-Jiménez J, Deviller G, Mariani G, Skejo H, Umlauf G,Guiot N , Héas Moisan K , Léauté F , Munschy C , Tixier C , Tronczynski J . (2006). PCDD/Fs Occurrence in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon (Etang de Thau, France): Concentrations and patterns in different environmental compartments. Organohalogen Compounds, 68, 1016-1021.


 

Communications at conferences / scientific meetings


J. Castro-Jiménez, G. Mariani, I. Vives, H. Skejo, G. Umlauf, J.M Zaldivar, G. Messiaen, T. Laugier. Ambient levels and occurrence of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the airshed of a Mediterranean coastal lagoon. SETAC Europe 20th Annual Meeting. Seville, May . Poster.

J.M. Zaldívar, D. Marinov, S. Dueri, J. Castro-Jiménez, C. Micheletti and A. Worth. An integrated approach for bioaccumulation modelling in mussels. SETAC Europe 19h Annual Meeting. Goteborg, May-June 2009. Poster

Castro-Jiménez J, Deviller G, Mariani G, Skejo H, Umlauf G,Guiot N , Héas Moisan K , Léauté F , Munschy C , Tixier C , Tronczynski J. PCDD/Fs Occurrence in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon (Etang de Thau, France): Concentrations and patterns in different environmental compartments. 26th International Symposium on Halogenated Environmental Organic Pollutants and POPs, Oslo, August 2006. Poster

A. Furaut, N. Guiot, K. Héas-Moisan, F. Léauté, I. Truquet, C. Munschy, C. Tixier, T. Laugier, P. Le Gall, D. Munaron, J. Tronczynski, J. Castro Jiménez, J. Wollgast, G. Deviller, R. Loos, M. Ghiani, G. Mariani, H Skejo, S. Schmidt. Dynamics of persistent organic contaminants in the THAU Mediterranean lagoon (France): Experimental approach for THRESHOLDS studies. IP Thresholds of Environmental Sustainability, General Scientific Meeting. Madrid, February 2006. Poster.

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