Impacton Water Quality of Gross Pollutants

ReportNo WSAA 121

June 1997




Grosspollutants represent a problem of visual pollution but less is known of theirchemical impacts on aquatic ecosystems. This paper reports the results of anexperiment in which the impact of gross pollutants on water quality wasexamined. Rubbish (gross pollutants) was retrieved from urban sites in the LaneCove Valley. The material was sorted and placed in drums containing eitherdeionised water or local urban creek water. Some of the treatments wereaerated. Water quality parameters were monitored over 262 days.


Resultsof the analyses suggest that many gross pollutants are benign in terms of keywater quality parameters. However, there are several types of rubbish whichwill present serious problems. Rubbish left in water for periods in excess of30 days will degrade water quality. The study suggests that rubbish should befrequently (at least once a month) removed from ponded environments.


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