Paper No. 9
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM
EVALUATING THE MOBILITY AND TRANSPORT OF TRACE ELEMENTS WITHIN THE COGINCHAUG RIVER ESTUARY SYSTEM, DURHAM, CT
The Coginchaug River is located within the Hartford Basin and is the main tributary of the Mattabesset River. The Coginchaug watershed is 39 square mile and extends throughout the towns of Middletown, Middlefield and Durham, CT. The portion of the estuary system that is located in Durham has been a topic of environmental concern since the 1970’s due to intense agricultural activities and the presence of Durham Meadow Superfund sites which includes two metal manufacturing facilities: Merriam Manufacturing Company (MMC) and Durham Manufacturing Company (DMC). This study examined stream sediments from Coginchaug River estuary system in Durham, CT, with the view of determining possible impact of abandoned industrial sites (Durham Meadow Superfund sites) and agricultural activities on the chemical signature of trace elements within the stream sediments of this estuary system. To address this objective, we collected sediment samples from a total of 45 different locations and analyzed for acid and soluble extractable elements, and basic soil parameters such as particle size, organic matter and soluble salts. Results of the particle size analysis using Hydrometer method showed that most of the sediments are sands, loamy sand, sandy loam, silty loam to silt. Calculation of sediment enrichment factors and geoaccumulation indices with reference to geochemical abundance of these elements showed degree of enrichment with respect to background concentrations in these sediments.