The main goals of the present work are the determination of the critical metals in the Paraiba do Sul - Guandu River System (PSR-GR), and the analysis of tap waters supplied to local cities as well as the city of Rio de Janeiro, to evaluate the metal pollution. Results show that four metals (Pb, Cu, Cr and Zn) out of eight released by the local industrial area are the critical metals in the PSR-GR system. Suspended particles are the main compartment in transporting these metals downstream. Analysis of the performance of tap water treatment plants pointed out the main parameter for these treatment plants is the retention of suspended particles. Iron and manganese had the highest concentrations.

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