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Chemosphere. 2005 Nov;61(6):834-43. Epub 2005 Jun 16.

Determination of perchlorate in selected surface waters in the Great Lakes Basin by HPLC/MS/MS.

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Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Road, P.O. Box 5050, Burlington, Ont., Canada L7R 4A6.


Surface water samples were collected from 55 sites in the Great Lakes Basin and analyzed for the presence of perchlorate using HPLC/MS/MS with an isotopically enriched internal standard. Sites included areas impacted by heavy industry, urbanization, agriculture and atmospheric deposition. Perchlorate was detected at several of the sites at concentrations close to the method detection limit (0.2 microg/l). Despite these low concentrations, its presence was confirmed by sample concentration and determination of the isotopic ratio of perchlorate. The presence of perchlorate at two of the sites was related to a fireworks display which had occurred prior to sampling. The other detections of perchlorate were in rivers/creeks draining watersheds which had high density livestock and crop farming activity. We suspect the two are related. To our knowledge, these are the first reported concentrations of perchlorate in Canadian surface waters.

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