Assessment of sediment contamination in Casco Bay, Maine, USA. Academic Article uri icon


  • The current status of contaminant concentrations in Casco Bay, decadal trends of these contaminants and changes in their geographical distribution are assessed using sediment samples collected approximately 10 years apart. In general, regulated contaminants appeared to be decreasing in concentration. Total PAH and dioxins/furans concentrations did not significantly change over this period. Total organochlorine pesticides, 4,4-DDE, 4,4-DDD, total DDT, PCB, tributyltin and total butyltin decreased in concentration. Trace element concentrations in sediments decreased at the majority of the sampling sites for chromium, nickel, and selenium while arsenic, cadmium, copper, lead, mercury, silver, and zinc remained relatively constant. None of the contaminants measured has increased by more than a factor of 2. Selected sites located in the Inner Bay, where concentrations are higher and new inputs were more likely, showed increased concentrations of contaminants. Most contaminants were not found at concentrations expected to adversely affect sediment biota based on ERL/ERM guidelines.

published proceedings

  • Environ Pollut

author list (cited authors)

  • Wade, T. L., Sweet, S. T., & Klein, A. G.

citation count

  • 33

complete list of authors

  • Wade, Terry L||Sweet, Stephen T||Klein, Andrew G

publication date

  • April 2008