Concentrations of trace metals in the South China Sea (SCS) were determined off the coast of Terengganu during the months of May and November 2007. The concentrations of dissolved and particulate metals were in the range of 0.019-0.194 μg/L and 50-365 μg/g, respectively, for cadmium (Cd), 0.05-0.45 μg/L and 38-3,570 μg/g for chromium (Cr), 0.05-3.54 μg/L and 21-1,947 μg/g for manganese (Mn), and 0.03-0.49 μg/L and 2-56,982 μg/g for lead (Pb). The order of mean log K D found was Cd > Cr > Pb > Mn. The study suggests that the primary sources of these metals are discharges from the rivers which drain into the SCS, in particular the Dungun River, which flows in close proximity to agricultural areas and petrochemical industries. During the northeast monsoon, levels of particulate metals in the bottom water samples near the shore were found to be much higher than during the dry season, the probable result of re-suspension of the metals from the bottom sediments.
The studies of (137)Cs and (239+240)Pu distributions in surface seawater at South China Sea within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Peninsular Malaysia were carried out in June 2008. The analysis results will serve as additional information to the expanded baseline data for Malaysia's marine environment. Thirty locations from extended study area were identified in the EEZ from which large volumes of surface seawater samples were collected. Different co-precipitation techniques were employed to concentrate cesium and plutonium separately. A known amount of (134)Cs and (242)Pu tracers were used as yield determinant. The precipitate slurry was collected and oven dried at 60(o)C for 1-2 days. Cesium precipitate was fine-ground and counted using gamma-ray spectrometry system at 661.62keV, while plutonium was separated from other radionuclides using anion exchange, electrodeposited and counted using alpha spectrometry. The activity concentrations of (137)Cs and (239+240)Pu were in the range of 3.40-5.89Bq/m(3) and 2.3-7.9mBq/m(3), respectively. The (239+240)Pu/(137)Cs ratios indicate that there are no new inputs of these radionuclides into the area.
A study was done to determine the concentrations of surfactants on the sea-surface microlayer and in atmospheric aerosols in several coastal areas around the Malaysian peninsula. The concentrations of surfactants from the sea-surface microlayer (collected using rotation drum) and from aerosols (collected using HVS) were analyzed as methylene blue active substances and disulphine blue active substances through the colorimetric method using a UV-vis spectrophotometer. The results of this study showed that the average concentrations of surfactants in the sea-surface microlayer ranged between undetected and 0.36+/-0.34 micromol L(-1) for MBAS and between 0.11+/-0.02 and 0.21+/-0.13 micromol L(-1) for DBAS. The contribution of surfactants from the sea-surface microlayer to the composition of surfactants in atmospheric aerosols appears to be very minimal and more dominant in fine mode aerosols.
Present study was conducted to evaluate current status of trace elements contamination in the surface sediments of the Johor Strait. Iron (2.54 +/- 1.24%) was found as the highest occurring element, followed by those of zinc (210.45 +/- 115.4 microg/g), copper (57.84 +/- 45.54 microg/g), chromium (55.50 +/- 31.24 microg/g), lead (52.52 +/- 28.41 microg/g), vanadium (47.76 +/- 25.76 microg/g), arsenic (27.30 +/- 17.11 microg/g), nickel (18.31 +/- 11.77 microg/g), cobalt (5.13 +/- 3.12 microg/g), uranium (4.72 +/- 2.52 microg/g), and cadmium (0.30 +/- 0.30 microg/g), respectively. Bioavailability of cobalt, nickel, copper, zinc, arsenic and cadmium were higher than 50% of total concentration. Vanadium, copper, zinc, arsenic and cadmium were found significantly different between the eastern and western part of the strait (p < 0.05). Combining with other factors, Johor Strait is suitable as a hotspot for trace elements contamination related studies.
Concentrations of Cd, Cu, Pb, Zn, Ni and Fe were determined in the surface sediments to investigate the distributions, concentrations and the pollution status of heavy metals in Dumai coastal waters. Sediment samples from 23 stations, representing 5 different site groups of eastern, central and western Dumai and southern and northern Rupat Island, were collected in May 2005. The results showed that heavy metal concentrations (in microg/g dry weight; Fe in %) were 0.88 (0.46-1.89); 6.08 (1.61-13.84); 32.34 (14.63-84.90); 53.89 (31.49-87.11); 11.48 (7.26-19.97) and 3.01 (2.10-3.92) for Cd, Cu, Pb, Zn, Ni and Fe, respectively. Generally, metal concentrations in the coastal sediments near Dumai city center (eastern and central Dumai) which have more anthropogenic activities were higher than those at other stations. Average concentration of Cd in the eastern Dumai was slightly higher than effective range low (ERL) but still below effective range medium (ERM) value established by Long et al. (Environmental Management 19(1):81-97, 1995; Environmental Toxicology Chemistry 17(4):714-727, 1997). All other metals were still below ERL and ERM. Calculated enrichment factor (EF), especially for Cd and Pb, and the Pollution load index (PLI) value in the eastern Dumai were also higher than other sites. Cd showed higher EF when compared to other metals. Geo-accumulation indices (I(geo)) in most of the stations (all site groups) were categorized as class 1 (unpolluted to moderately polluted environment) and only Cd in Cargo Port was in class 2 (moderately polluted). Heavy metal concentrations found in the present study were comparable to other regions of the world and based on the calculated indices it can be classified as unpolluted to moderately polluted coastal environment.
A rapid and green analytical method based on capillary electrophoresis with capacitively coupled contactless conductivity detection (C⁴D) for the determination of eight environmental pollutants, the biogenic amines (putrescine, cadaverine, spermidine, spermine, tyramine, 2-phenylamine, histamine and tryptamine), is described. The separation was achieved under normal polarity mode at 24 °C and 25 kV with a hydrodynamic injection (50 mbar for 5 s) and using a bare fused-silica capillary (95 cm length × 50 µm i.d.) (detection length of 10.5 cm from the outlet end of the capillary). The optimized background electrolyte consisted of 400 mM malic acid. C⁴D parameters were set at a fixed amplitude (50 V) and frequency (600 kHz). Under the optimum conditions, the method exhibited good linearity over the range of 1.0⁻100 µg mL−1 (R² ≥ 0.981). The limits of detection based on signal to noise (S/N) ratios of 3 and 10 were ≤0.029 µg mL−1. The method was used for the determination of seawater samples that were spiked with biogenic amines. Good recoveries (77⁻93%) were found.
A set of methodological tools was tested to assess the sensitivity of several ecological and biological indices to eutrophication while at the same time attempting to explore a linkage among pressures, classification assessment and drivers. Industrial discharges, harbor activities, natural interactions and river discharges are the pressures most related to the eutrophication process in tropical coastal water bodies. Among the eutrophication indices used, TRIX and operational indicators overestimated the eutrophication status in the study area, but EI and chl-a seems to be a rather responsive index to reflect the first stage of eutrophication. It is noteworthy that EI and chl-a showed better overall agreement with the ecological quality status (EcoQ) showing that probably it reflects the indirect relation of macrobenthic with water eutrophication in a better way. An ecological boundary of EI and chl-a from moderate to poor may be needed in order to explain the poor status of relatively eutrophic Klang Strait coastal sites.
Over the past decade, concerns over microplastic pollution in the marine ecosystem has increasingly gained more attention, but research investigating the ingestion of microplastics by marine fish in Malaysia is still regrettably lacking. This study investigated the microplastic presence, abundance, and morphological types within the guts of four species of commercial marine fish (Atule mate, Crenimugil seheli, Sardinella fimbriata and Rastrelliger brachysoma) caught in seawater off the coast of Malaysia's Northwest Peninsular. A total of 72 individual commercial marine fish guts from four species (fish per species n = 18) were examined. Remarkably, this study found that 100% of the samples contained microplastics. A total number of 432 microplastics (size < 5 mm) from the four species were found in the excised marine fish guts. The most common type of microplastic discovered was fragment, which accounted for 49.5% of all microplastics present. The gut microplastic content differed between species. Sardinella fimbriata recorded the greatest amount of microplastic ingestion, with an average microplastic count of 6.5 (±4.3) items per individual fish. However, there were no statistically significant differences found when comparing study species and different locations. SEM-EDX analysis confirmed the presence of microplastic particles by identifying the chemical elements found in the samples. Since the four studied species of commercial marine fish are popular protein sources in Malaysians' daily diet, this study suggests potential microplastic exposure to humans via contaminated fish consumption in Malaysia, which was previously unknown. Based on previous scientific evidence, this study also demonstrates the high probability of microplastic ingestion in marine fish in the Malaysian seawater, which could have an adverse effect on fish health as well as marine biota.
The basic aim of this work is (1) to review and present practically operational requirements for a sustainability assessment of marine environment, such as describing the monitoring process, research approaches, objectives, guidelines, and indicators and (2) to illustrate how physico-chemical and biological indicators can be practically applied, to assess water and sediment quality in marine and coastal environment. These indicators should meet defined criteria for practical usefulness, e.g. they should be simple to understand and apply to managers and scientists with different educational backgrounds. This review aimed to encapsulate that variability, recognizing that meaningful guidance should be flexible enough to accommodate the widely differing characteristics of marine ecosystems.
An effort to analyze selected heavy metal accumulation by the razor clam (Solen brevis) from Tanjung Lumpur was conducted on January to April 2010. A total of fifty individuals of Razor clam Solen brevis were sampled and metals such as Iron (Fe), Zinc (Zn), Copper (Cu), Manganese (Mn), Lead (Pb) and Cadmium (Cd) Concentrations were determined using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS). Among the metals Fe occurred in elevated concentration in the soft tissue of razor clam followed by Zn. Cd was found to be in least concentration in the sample. Mean concentration of Fe, Zn, Mn, Cu, Cd and Pb in the soft tissue were 415.2 +/- 56.52, 87.74 +/- 11.85, 18.71 +/- 2.10, 8.64 +/- 1.75, 0.67 +/- 0.29 and 1.61 +/- 0.45 microg g(-1) dw, respectively indicating that the bioaccumulation of essential metals in the soft tissue was greater than the non essential heavy metals. Metal accumulation in the soft tissue of razor clam followed Fe > Zn > Mn > Cu > Pb > Cd order in present study. The observed concentration of acute toxicity of metals in Solen brevis (Family: Solenidae) from Tanjung Lumpur Coastal waters was lower than the permissible limit recommended by National and international standards proved that this species could be utilized for human consumption.
The molecular composition and distribution of sterols were investigated in the East China Sea to identify the origins of suspended particulate matter (SPM) in offshore waters influenced by Changjiang River Diluted Water (CRDW). Total sterol concentrations ranged from 3200 to 31,900pgL(-1) and 663 to 5690pgL(-1) in the particulate and dissolved phases, respectively. Marine sterols dominated representing 71% and 66% in the particulate and dissolved phases, respectively. Typical sewage markers, such as coprostanol, were usually absent at ~250km offshore. However, sterols from allochthonous terrestrial plants were still detected at these sites. A negative relationship was observed between salinity and concentrations of terrestrial sterols in SPM, suggesting that significant amounts of terrestrial particulate matter traveled long distance offshore in the East China Sea, and the Changjiang River Diluted Water (CRDW) was an effective carrier of land-derived particulate organic matter to the offshore East China Sea.
The use of antifouling paints to the boats and ships is one among the threats facing coastal resources including coral reefs in recent decades. This study reports the current contamination status of diuron and its behaviour in the coastal waters of Malaysia. The maximum concentration of diuron was 285 ng/L detected at Johor port. All samples from Redang and Bidong coral reef islands were contaminated with diuron. Temporal variation showed relatively high concentrations but no significant difference (P>0.05) during November and January (North-East monsoon) in Klang ports (North, South and West), while higher levels of diuron were detected during April, 2012 (Inter monsoon) in Kemaman, and Johor port. Although no site has shown concentration above maximum permissible concentration (430 ng/L) as restricted by the Dutch Authorities, however, long term exposure studies for environmental relevance levels of diuron around coastal areas should be given a priority in the future.
Nineteen pairs of air and seawater samples collected from the equatorial Indian Ocean onboard the Shiyan I from 4/2011 to 5/2011 were analyzed for PCBs and HCB. Gaseous concentrations of ∑(ICES)PCBs (ICES: International Council for the Exploration of the Seas) and HCB were lower than previous data over the study area. Air samples collected near the coast had higher levels of PCBs relative to those collected in the open ocean, which may be influenced by proximity to source regions and air mass origins. Dissolved concentrations of ∑(ICES)PCBs and HCB were 1.4-14 pg L⁻¹ and 0.94-13 pg L⁻¹, with the highest concentrations in the sample collected from Strait of Malacca. Fugacity fractions suggest volatilization of PCBs and HCB from the seawater to air during the cruise, with fluxes of 0.45-34 ng m⁻² d⁻¹ and 0.36-18 ng m⁻² d⁻¹, respectively.
The study presents a baseline variability and climatology study of measured hydrodynamic, water properties and some water quality parameters of West Johor Strait, Singapore at hourly-to-seasonal scales to uncover their dependency and correlation to one or more drivers. The considered parameters include, but not limited by sea surface elevation, current magnitude and direction, solar radiation and air temperature, water temperature, salinity, chlorophyll-a and turbidity. FFT (Fast Fourier Transform) analysis is carried out for the parameters to delineate relative effect of tidal and weather drivers. The group and individual correlations between the parameters are obtained by principal component analysis (PCA) and cross-correlation (CC) technique, respectively. The CC technique also identifies the dependency and time lag between driving natural forces and dependent water property and water quality parameters. The temporal variability and climatology of the driving forces and the dependent parameters are established at the hourly, daily, fortnightly and seasonal scales.
Near-shore surface sediment was collected from five stations off Redang Island located on the eastern coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Freeze-dried sediments were Soxhlet extracted and then fractionated using column chromatography into aliphatic and polar fractions. Determination of these fractions was carried out using gas chromatography mass spectrometry. The concentration of total resolved aliphatic hydrocarbons in sediments ranged from 157 to 308 ng/g. The distribution of aliphatic fraction showed the presence of n-alkanes ranging from nC15 to nC33 with a minor odd-to-even predominance exhibiting carbon maximum, depending on station, at nC17, nC26, nC29 or nC31. Calculation of Carbon Preference Index (CPI) for CPI(15-33) gave values ranging from 1.09 to 1.46. n-Alkanol in all sediment exhibits even-to-odd carbon predominance ranging from nC16 to nC28 and maximising at nC22. n-Fatty acids distribution ranged from nC14 to nC24 with a dominant maximum at nC16 and exhibiting high values of short chain fatty acids (≤nC20) to long chain fatty acids (>nC20) ratios. Unsaturated fatty acids, particularly nC16:1 and nC18:1 is also ubiquitous in all samples. Cholesterol is the most abundant compound amongst the sterol group ranging from 42.8 to 62.6% of the total sterols. β-Sitosterol, brassicasterol and stigmasterol, are also present but of relatively lower amount. These observations suggest that the aliphatic lipids and sterols in the study area originate, mainly, from biogenic sources of marine microbial with minor contribution from epiticular waxes of terrestrial plants.
Relationships between six calcifying plankton groups and pH are explored in a highly biologically productive and data-rich area of the central North Sea using time-series datasets. The long-term trends show that abundances of foraminiferans, coccolithophores, and echinoderm larvae have risen over the last few decades while the abundances of bivalves and pteropods have declined. Despite good coverage of pH data for the study area there is uncertainty over the quality of this historical dataset; pH appears to have been declining since the mid 1990s but there was no statistical connection between the abundance of the calcifying plankton and the pH trends. If there are any effects of pH on calcifying plankton in the North Sea they appear to be masked by the combined effects of other climatic (e.g. temperature), chemical (nutrient concentrations) and biotic (predation) drivers. Certain calcified plankton have proliferated in the central North Sea, and are tolerant of changes in pH that have occurred since the 1950s but bivalve larvae and pteropods have declined. An improved monitoring programme is required as ocean acidification may be occurring at a rate that will exceed the environmental niches of numerous planktonic taxa, testing their capacities for acclimation and genetic adaptation.
A study was performed to determine the effect of Conway and f/2 media on the growth of microalgae genera. Genera of Chlorella sp., Dunaliella sp., Isochrysis sp., Chaetoceros sp., Pavlova sp. and Tetraselmis sp. were isolated from the South China Sea. During the cultivation period, the density of cells were determined using Syringe Liquid Sampler Particle Measuring System (SLS-PMS) that also generated the population distribution curve based on the size of the cells. The population of the microalgae genera is thought to consist of mother and daughter generations since these microalgae genera reproduce by releasing small non-motile reproductive cells (autospores). It was found that the reproduction of Tetraselmis sp., Dunaliella sp. and Pavlova sp. could be sustained longer in f/2 Medium. Higher cell density was achieved by genus Dunaliella, Chlorella and Isochrysis in Conway Medium. Different genera of microalgae had a preference for different types of cultivation media.
A study was conducted to investigate the influence of Asian monsoon on chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) content in Sabah waters and to identify the related oceanographic conditions that caused phytoplankton blooms at the eastern and western coasts of Sabah, Malaysia. A series of remote sensing measurements including surface Chl-a, sea surface temperature, sea surface height anomaly, wind speed, wind stress curl, and Ekman pumping were analyzed to study the oceanographic conditions that lead to large-scale nutrients enrichment in the surface layer. The results showed that the Chl-a content increased at the northwest coast from December to April due to strong northeasterly wind and coastal upwelling in Kota Kinabalu water. The southwest coast (Labuan water) maintained high concentrations throughout the year due to the effect of Padas River discharge during the rainy season and the changing direction of Baram River plume during the northeast monsoon (NEM). However, with the continuous supply of nutrients from the upwelling area, the high Chl-a batches were maintained at the offshore water off Labuan for a longer time during NEM. On the other side, the northeast coast illustrated a high Chl-a in Sandakan water during NEM, whereas the northern tip off Kudat did not show a pronounced change throughout the year. The southeast coast (Tawau water) was highly influenced by the direction of the surface water transport between the Sulu and Sulawesi Seas and the prevailing surface currents. The study demonstrates the presence of seasonal phytoplankton blooms in Sabah waters which will aid in forecasting the possible biological response and could further assist in marine resource managements.
Marine spatial planning tends to prioritise biological conservation targets over socio-economic considerations, which may incur lower user compliance and ultimately compromise management success. We argue for more inclusion of human dimensions in spatial management, so that outcomes not only fulfill biodiversity and conservation objectives, but are also acceptable to resource users. We propose a fuzzy logic framework that will facilitate this task- The protected area suitability index (PASI) combines fishers' spatial preferences with biological criteria to assess site suitability for protection from fishing. We apply the PASI in a spatial evaluation of a small-scale reef fishery in Sabah, Malaysia. While our results pertain to fishers specifically, the PASI can also be customized to include the interests of other stakeholders and resource users, as well as incorporate varying levels of protection.
Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) was detected as isomer groups (congener numbers 28, 52, 101, 118, 138, 153 and 180) in the coastal water and sediment of four stations around Shadegan wetland protected area in the northwestern part of the Persian Gulf. Total PCB concentration range was 8-375 ng/L in water and 3.4-50.2 μg/g in sediment. Concentration of different congeners and chromatogram indicates that the source of PCB in this area can be Clophen A60; it used for long time in Iranian electronic industries. Other chlorinated hydrocarbons such as lindane, DDT and their metabolites were also present in the samples.