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Turkish Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 2008, Vol 8, Num, 2     (Pages: 193-200)

Macrophytes in Phytoremediation of Heavy Metal Contaminated Water and Sediments in Pariyej Community Reserve, Gujarat, India

J. I. Nirmal Kumar 1 ,Hiren Soni 2 ,Rita N. Kumar 3 ,Ira Bhatt 1

1 Institute of Science and Technology for Advanced Studies and Research (ISTAR), Department of Environmental Sciences, Vallabh Vidyanagar – 388 120, Gujarat, India
2 Ashok & Rita Patel Institute, Research in Biotechnology and Allied Sciences (ARIBAS), 388 121, Gujarat, India
3 N.V. Patel College of Pure & Applied Sciences, Department of Biosciences-Environmental Sci., 388 120, Gujarat, India
Viewed : 5148 - Downloaded : 1813 A phytoremediation study was carried out at Pariyej reservoir, an internationally important wetland listed in Asian Directory of Wetlands, designated as a “Wetland of International Importance” and a proposed community reserve of Gujarat State, India, to ascertain the degree of heavy metal contamination. The study focused on assessment of heavy metal accumulation in certain aquatic macrophytes used as biomonitors, in comparison with water and sediments (abiotic monitors) for phytoremediation. Roots, stems and leaves of native aquatic plants (biomonitors) represented by seven species: Ipomoea aquatica Forsk, Eichhornia crassipes, (Mart.) Solms, Typha angustata Bory & Chaub, Echinochloa colonum (L.) Link, Hydrilla verticillata (L.f.) Royle, Nelumbo nucifera Gaerth. and Vallisneria spiralis L. along with surface sediments and water, were analyzed for Cd, Co, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn contamination. The greater accumulation of heavy metals was observed in Nelumbo nucifera and the poor content in Echinochloa colonum. Based on the concentration and toxicity status observed in the lake's vegetation, the six heavy metals are arranged in the following descending order: Zn > Cu > Pb >Ni > Co > Cd compared with the standard, normal and critical toxicity range in plants. The detected values of Cd and Pb fall within normal range, while that of Co and Ni were within the critical range. However, Zn and Cu showed the highest accumulation with alarming toxicity levels, which are considered as one of the most hazardous pollutants in Pariyej reservoir. Species like Typha angustata and Ipomoea aquatica are also proposed as bioremediants, which are the two most useful plant species in phytoremediation studies due to their ability to accumulate heavy metals in high concentration in the roots. The results showed the significant differences in accumulation of metals like Zn, Cu and Pb in different plant organs, in roots than that of stems and leaves. High positive correlation between combinations of different metal pairs in plant’s root, stem or leaf system was established. The potential use of these wetland plants in phytoremediation is also discussed. Keywords : freshwater macrophytes, heavy metals, lake contamination, phytoremediation, Pariyej Community Reserve (PCR), Gujarat, India