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Research Technical Report

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Distribution and Concentration of Selected Contaminants in Monterey Bay Sediments

Stephenson, M., G. Ichikawa, J. Goetzl, K. Paulson, M. Pranger, R. Fairey, S. Lamerdin, R. Tjeerdema, J. Newman, J. Becker, and M. Stoetling (1997)

In: S.L. Eittreim (editor), Southern Monterey Bay Continental Shelf Investigations: Former Fort Ord Restricted Zone. U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, Open File Report 97-450. p. 76-103.


The presence/absence of contamination in sediments directly off the coast of Fort Ord, California was investigated in this study. Twenty sediment samples were collected in 1995 from Monterey Bay for this assessment. Lead concentrations ranged from 7.3 to 13.4 ppm and was highest in the two samples closest to Fort Ord but the identity of the source needs to be investigated further in order to distinguish lead from Fort Ord from lead smelter waste known to exist in Monterey Harbor. DDT concentrations ranged from non detected to 23.5 ppb and was highest offshore of the Salinas and Pajaro Rivers. PAHs and most metals were found in the fine grained sediments furthest offshore. A relatively small number of samples exceeded sediment quality guidelines (ERMs, ERLs, PELs, TELs). It is unlikely that the current DDT values reported from Monterey Bay are at levels that would cause an ecotoxicological effect.

Reviewed: April 11, 2024
Web Site Owner: National Ocean Service

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