Environment international

Perfluoroalkyl substances and extractable organic fluorine in surface sediments and cores from Lake Ontario.

PMID 23911339


Fourteen perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) including short-chain perfluorocarboxylates (PFCAs, C4-C6) and perfluoroalkane sulfonates (PFSAs, C4 and C6) were measured in surface sediment samples from 26 stations collected in 2008 and sediment core samples from three stations (Niagara, Mississauga, and Rochester basins) collected in 2006 in Lake Ontario. Perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS), perfluorooctanoate (PFOA), perfluorononanoate (PFNA), perfluorodecanoate (PFDA), and perfluoroundecanoate (PFUnDA) were detected in all 26 surface sediment samples, whereas perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), perfluorooctane sulfonamide (FOSA), perfluorododecanoate (PFDoDA) and perfluorobutanoate (PFBA) were detected in over 70% of the surface sediment samples. PFOS was detected in all of the sediment core samples (range: 0.492-30.1ngg(-1) d.w.) over the period 1952-2005. The C8 to C11 PFCAs, FOSA, and PFBA increased in early 1970s. An overall increasing trend in sediment PFAS concentrations/fluxes from older to more recently deposited sediments was evident in the three sediment cores. The known PFCAs and PFSAs accounted for 2-44% of the anionic fraction of the extractable organic fluorine in surface sediment, suggesting that a large proportion of fluorine in this fraction remained unknown. Sediment core samples collected from Niagara basin showed an increase in unidentified organic fluorine in recent years (1995-2006). These results suggest that the use and manufacture of fluorinated organic compounds other than known PFCAs and PFSAs has diversified and increased.