Site-specific water quality analysis of sediments and surface waters in Fredericton

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University of New Brunswick


Water is the source of life, covering 71% of the earth's surface. Water is an important part of the external environment, involving life, production and other aspects. Because of water pollution, available water resources become contaminated. This report provides information on year and seasonal changes in water-affecting variables at 11 locations within the Fredericton area, New Brunswick, from river water to small streams, and upslope basin areas and water-affecting inputs, the variables refer to pH, dissolved oxygen (DO), electrical conductivity (EC) in stream and river water and sediments. Through box plotting and regression analysis, it was found that the sediment and water quality parameters varied by location, year, and season. In general, sediment DO < water DO, sediment pH < water pH, and sediment EC ≈ water EC. Locations downstream from a road salt storage and road application had much higher sediment EC values than elsewhere. Dissolved DO was particularly low in sediments during spring, summer and fall, and highly variable in water, likely due to continuing changes in water flow rates, and the presence of photosynthesizing and respiring plants in water. Water and sediment pH values were on average lowest in winter. Possible reasons for these variations are discussed by location, season and year in terms of general expectations.