Water Quality: A Chemical and Cultural comparison of the United States and France

TitleWater Quality: A Chemical and Cultural comparison of the United States and France
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication1999
AuthorsLess, Gregory B.
Academic DepartmentChemistry, College of Science
Thesis AdvisorLoveland, Dr. Walter
DegreeBachelor of Arts in International Relations in Chemistry
Number of Pages92
Date Published03/1999
UniversityOregon State University
Thesis TypeUndergraduate
KeywordsChemistry, comparison, France, metals, Rhone River, United States, Willamette River

Twenty-five samples from the Rhône River as it passes through Lyon, France were analyzed for thirteen trace metals (Se, As, Sb, Zn, Cd, Pb, Ni, Fe, Co, Hg, Mn, Cr, and Cu), using as inductively coupled plasma-atomic emissions spectrometer. The data was compared with a similar study conducted by the United States Geological Survey on the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon. While the Rhône was found to have higher trace metal concentrations, there are known differences between the two studies which at least partially account for this. The levels detected in the Rhône were, with few exceptions, below the EPA’s recommended drinking water concentrations. Cultural attitudes of the French and Americans concerning the environment were examined by means of an opinion survey. It was found that members of both societies are interested in the best environment possible, though they do not agree on a means of achieving this goal.