Spatial and Seasonal Trend of Trace Metals and Ecological Risk Assessment along Kanyakumari Coastal Sediments, Southern India

Document Type: Original Research Paper


1 Faculty of Marine Sciences, Annamalai University, Parangipettai - 608 502, India

2 Department of Physics, Annamalai University, Annamalai Nagar - 608 002, India



The concentration of selected trace metals (Fe, Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn) in 30
surface sediments were measured using Atomic Absorption Spectrometer to investigate
the spatial and seasonal variations of trace metals along Kanyakumari coast, India. To
assess the environmental risk of trace metals, enrichment factor, geo-accumulation index,
pollution load index, and ecological risk index have been calculated. According to the
pollution load index and geo-accumulation index (Igeo) values, Kanyakumari coastal
sediments were unpolluted by Fe, Cu, Pb, and Zn, whereas moderately polluted by Cd
with low to moderate ecological risk. The existence of the high hydrodynamic condition
during the southwest monsoon is more favorable to the transport of sediments and
enhance the accumulation of metals, whereas during the northeast monsoon the
accumulation of metals is less. The baseline data for spatial distribution and seasonal
variation of trace metals and their controlling factors found in this study will be useful for
pollution monitoring program along the Kanyakumari coast.


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