Mercury levels in tar mat contaminated beaches and its marine organisms living along the Qatari coasts
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One of the pollutants that affects the coastal environment of Qatar is the vast expanse of oil residue ‘tarmats’ deposited on its beaches. The current study is aimed at gauging the concentration levels of total mercury (THg) in tarmat contaminated sediments and test their presence in selected coastal species. Three biota classes (Gastropoda, Bivalvia, and Crustacea) have been found on the tarmat of Ras Rakan and Umm Tais islands. Layers of hard asphalt-like tarmats and sediments samples were collected from 34 sites, along the coast of Qatar. Moreover, the Biota Sediment Accumulation Factor (BSAF) was calculated for THg through sentinel species. The mean concentrations of THg is 0.089 ± 0.02 μg.g-1. Compared to earlier studies, a relatively higher concentration of THg (0.463 μg.g-1) had been observed.