To delineate the character of contaminations in the Grand Canal, China, a three-year study (2004-2006) was conducted to investigate variations the water quality in the canal. Results showed that the variation of water quality within the Grand Canal was of there is remarkable spatial and seasonal heterogeneity regarding water quality within the Canal. Values of contaminants in dry-season were obviously higher than those in wet-season. Sites influenced strongly by industry and urbanization showed higher contents of nutrients and lower levels of dissolved oxygen in water body; moreover these sites were severely polluted by dissolved metals with the contents of cadmium, chromium and copper exceeding the Criteria Maximum Concentration (CMC), US EPA. Multivariate statistical analysis suggested nutrient and dissolved metals pollution was the dominant environmental problems within the Canal. Anthropogenic influences played a dominant role in the character of contaminations in the Grand Canal.
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