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The distribution and geochemistry of arsenic (As) in water and sediments of the Zenne River, a small urban river flowing through Brussels (Belgium), were assessed based on the results of 18 sampling campaigns performed between 2010 and 2021. In general, concentrations of As sharply increase between Vilvoorde and Eppegem and are up to 6–8 times higher in the section downstream of Eppegem in comparison to the upstream part of the Zenne. The monitoring surveys in which the grab water samples were taken at a 1-hour sampling frequency revealed that the large temporal variability in As concentrations found in the downstream part of the river is driven by the tidal cycle. The diffusive gradients in thin films (DGT) technique was used to assess the DGT labile As species in surface water and sediment porewater. Three DGT sorbents (Metsorb, Lewatit FO 36, and ZrO2) for the determination of total As were applied to compare their performance, and the 3-mercaptopropyl-functionalized silica (3-MFS) was used for the speciation of As(III) in porewater. Arsenic species are fully labile in surface waters as the DGT time-integrated concentrations of As were in good agreement with the average concentrations calculated from the grab samplings. In sediment porewaters, As is predominantly present as non-DGT labile species (66–93 %), and the DGT labile As fraction is dominated by As(III). Flux calculations evaluating the relative importance of different As sources to the Zenne River revealed the presence of a point source on the tributary Tangebeek, which contributes to 87 % of the As load carried by the Zenne River.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was financially supported by INNOVIRIS through the Prospective Research in Brussels 2012 ( PRFB2013-15 ) and IMPULSE-Environment 2009 and 2012 initiatives. The graphical abstract was created with BioRender.com .
© 2022 Elsevier B.V.
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- Zenne River
- Diffusive gradients in thin-films