Science.gov

Sample records for soil mercury levels

  1. Biomonitoring of low levels of mercurial derivatives in water and soil by Allium micronucleus assay.

    PubMed

    Dash, S; Panda, K K; Panda, B B

    1988-02-01

    The Allium micronucleus (MNC) assay was developed to monitor low levels of mercury in aquatic and terrestrial environments. Four mercurial derivatives namely mercuric chloride (MC), methyl mercuric chloride (MMC), phenyl mercuric acetate (PMA) and a methoxy ethyl mercuric chloride based fungicide, Emisan-6, were tested to assess the sensitivity and versatility of the Allium MNC assay. Allium bulbs were set directly on water and soil contaminated with known levels of mercurial derivatives (0.0001-10.00 ppm). On the 5th day the endpoints measured were root length, mitoses with spindle abnormality and cells with MNC in root meristems. The effective concentrations of the test chemicals that cause 50% of root length as compared to control (EC50) were determined from dose-response curves so obtained. The lowest effective concentration tested (LECT) and highest ineffective concentration tested (HICT) for each of the mercurial derivatives for the induction of spindle malfunction and MNC were determined. It was found that EC50, LECT and HICT values for mercurial derivatives in soil were higher than those in water. The frequencies of cells with MNC and mitoses with spindle abnormality were highly correlated indicating that MNC is a good parameter of spindle malfunction. The present approach increased the sensitivity of the Allium assay by 10-fold, the detection limit being 0.001-0.1 ppm and 0.1-1.0 ppm in aquatic and terrestrial environments respectively, depending on the species of mercury. PMID:3340089

  2. Soil mercury levels in the area surrounding the Cerro Prieto geothermal complex, MEXICO.

    PubMed

    Pastrana-Corral, M A; Wakida, F T; García-Flores, E; Rodriguez-Mendivil, D D; Quiñonez-Plaza, A; Piñon-Colin, T D J

    2016-08-01

    Even though geothermal energy is a renewable energy source that is seen as cost-effective and environmentally friendly, emissions from geothermal plants can impact air, soil, and water in the vicinity of geothermal power plants. The Cerro Prieto geothermal complex is located 30 km southeast of the city of Mexicali in the Mexican state of Baja California. Its installed electricity generation capacity is 720 MW, being the largest geothermal complex in Mexico. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether the emissions generated by the geothermal complex have increased the soil mercury concentration in the surrounding areas. Fifty-four surface soil samples were collected from the perimeter up to an approximate distance of 7660 m from the complex. Additionally, four soil depth profiles were performed in the vicinity of the complex. Mercury concentration in 69 % of the samples was higher than the mercury concentration found at the baseline sites. The mercury concentration ranged from 0.01 to 0.26 mg/kg. Our results show that the activities of the geothermal complex have led to an accumulation of mercury in the soil of the surrounding area. More studies are needed to determine the risk to human health and the ecosystems in the study area. PMID:27418073

  3. [Effect of Soil and Dominant Plants on Mercury Speciation in Soil and Water System of Water-Level-Fluctuation Zone in the Three Gorges Area].

    PubMed

    Liang, Li; Wang, Yong-min; Zhang, Cheng; Yu, Ya-wei; An, Si-wei; Wang, Ding-yong

    2016-03-15

    Plentiful plants in the water-level-fluctuation-zone (WLFZ) of Three Gorges Reservoir ( TGR) grow vigorously during the non-flooded period, especially the herbaceous ones. Then, the WLFZ is submerged gradually from the end of September. Soil-plant system that under a long time flooded condition may change the form of mercury, thus resulting in a secondary pollution of the water environment in TGR. To understand the characteristics of mercury species in soils and water after submerged, four kinds of typical plants from TGR were tested in the lab under submerged condition. The results indicated that the plants could promote the formation of soil methylmercury ( MeHg) , and had a significant effect on the different forms of mercury concentrations of the overlying water during inundation. Cynodon dactylon as the dominant species in WLFZ, because of its higher content of total mercury ( THg ) and methylmercury, the effect on MeHg and the other forms of mercury in the soil and the overlying water system was obvious. After 90 days, the soil MeHg level was the highest in Cynodon dactylon & soil & water treatment (B1) [(1,135.86 ± 113.84) ng · kg⁻¹]. It was approximately 2 times less than that of the soil MeHg in soil & water treatment (CK2) . The variation characteristics of total mercury (THg), reactive mercury (RHg) , dissolved mercury (DHg), total methylmercury (TMeHg) and dissolved methylmercury (DMeHg) of overlying water all showed a parabolic shape with a peak skewed to the left, and the peak was reached on the 30th day. Meanwhile, TMeHg, THg and DHg in B1 treatment were the highest, which were (2.88 ± 0.06), (40.29 · 2.42) and (35.51 · 3.77) ng · L⁻¹ respectively, and TMeHg and THg in the overlying water were mainly in the form of dissolved state. Therefore, it could be inferred that the water consumption of the Three Gorges reservoir would increase the mercury pollution load of the reservoir. PMID:27337887

  4. Removal of mercury from soil with earthworms

    SciTech Connect

    Dorfman, D.

    1994-12-31

    Earthworms can live in soils containing high quantities of mercury, lead, and zinc. The worms (Lumbricus terrestris) concentrate these heavy metals in their tissues. The use of these worms to reduce the quantities of mercury and other heavy metals in soils may be practical. In July, 1993, a preliminary study was made using earthworms and soils with differing amounts of mercury, The quantities were 0.0 grams, 0.5 grams, and 1.0 grams of mercury as mercuric chloride. Earthworms were placed into these soils for two or more weeks, then harvested. The worms were rinsed with deionized water, then dissolved in nitric acid. Each sample was prepared for analysis with the addition of HNO{sub 3}, H{sub 2}SO{sub 4}, potassium permanganate, and hydrozylamine hydrochloride. A Jerome Instrument gold foil analyzer was used to determine levels of mercury after volatilizing the sample with stannous chloride. Worms exposed to contaminated soils remove 50 to 1,400 times as much mercury as do worms in control soils. In a hypothetical case, a site contaminated with one pound of mercury, 1,000 to 45,000 worms would be required to reduce mercury levels to background levels in the soil (about 250 ppb). After harvesting worms in contaminated soil they could be dried (90% of their weight is water), and the mercury regained by chemical processes. Soil conducive to earthworm survival is required. This includes a well aerated loamy soil, proper pH (7.0), and periodic watering and feeding. There are several methods of harvesting worms, including flooding and electricity. Large numbers of worms can be obtained from commercial growers.

  5. Effects of mercury release from amalgam dental restorations during cremation on soil mercury levels of three New Zealand crematoria

    SciTech Connect

    Nieschmidt, A.K.; Kim, N.D.

    1997-05-01

    A vast amount of research has been undertaken in the last 15-20 years on the corrosion reactions occurring in dental amalgam, release of mercury from amalgam restorations, and the toxic effects of this released mercury on the human body. However, one environmental aspect of amalgam dental restorations that has not received a great deal of attention is the release of mercury during cremation. Mercury is liberated during cremation both because dental amalgams are unstable at cremation temperatures (650-700{degrees}C) and because the free mercury metal is highly volatile. In New Zealand, 58% of deaths are followed by cremation and this figure is likely to rise in the future. This increasing use of cremation as the method of corpse disposal, coupled with the fact that each amalgam restoration is approximately 50% mercury, implies that a significant amount of mercury may be emitted into the environment every year. This study examines mercury released from crematoria in New Zealand. 20 refs., 2 figs., 5 tabs.

  6. Bioavailability and stability of mercury sulfide in Armuchee (USA) soil

    SciTech Connect

    Han, Fengxiang; Shiyab, Safwan; Su, Yi; Monts, David L.; Waggoner, Charles A.; Matta, Frank B.

    2007-07-01

    Because of the adverse effects of elemental mercury and mercury compounds upon human health, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is engaged in an on-going effort to monitor and remediate mercury-contaminated DOE sites. In order to more cost effectively implement those extensive remediation efforts, it is necessary to obtain an improved understanding of the role that mercury and mercury compounds play in the ecosystem. We have conducted pilot scale experiments to study the bioavailability of mercury sulfide in an Armuchee (eastern US ) soil. The effects of plants and incubation time on chemical stability and bioavailability of HgS under simulated conditions of the ecosystem have been examined, as has the dynamics of the dissolution of mercury sulfide by various extractants. The results show that mercury sulfide in contaminated Armuchee soil was still to some extent bioavailable to plants. After planting, soil mercury sulfide is more easily dissolved by both 4 M and 12 M nitric acid than pure mercury sulfide reagent. Dissolution kinetics of soil mercury sulfide and pure chemical reagent by nitric acid are different. Mercury release by EDTA from HgS-contaminated soil increased with time of reaction and soil mercury level. Chelating chemicals increase the solubility and bioavailability of mercury in HgS-contaminated soil. (authors)

  7. Mercury content of Illinois soils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dreher, G.B.; Follmer, L.R.

    2004-01-01

    For a survey of Illinois soils, 101 cores had been collected and analyzed to determine the current and background elemental compositions of Illinois soils. Mercury and other elements were determined in six samples per core, including a surface sample from each core. The mean mercury content in the surface samples was 33 ?? 20 ??g/kg soil, and the background content was 20 ?? 9 ??g/kg. The most probable sources of mercury in these soils were the parent material, and wet and dry deposition of Hg0 and Hg2+ derived from coal-burning power plants, other industrial plants, and medical and municipal waste incinerators. Mercury-bearing sewage sludge or other fertilizers applied to agricultural fields could have been the local sources of mercury. Although the mercury content correlated with organic carbon content or clay content in individual cores, when all the data were considered, there was no strong correlation between mercury and either the organic carbon or the clay-size content.

  8. Mercury speciation during in situ thermal desorption in soil.

    PubMed

    Park, Chang Min; Katz, Lynn E; Liljestrand, Howard M

    2015-12-30

    Metallic mercury (Hg(0)) and its compounds are highly mobile and toxic environmental pollutants at trace level. In situ thermal desorption (ISTD) is one of the soil remediation processes applying heat and vacuum simultaneously. Knowledge of thermodynamic mercury speciation is imperative to understand the fate and transport of mercury during thermal remediation and operate the treatment processes in a cost-effective manner. Hence, speciation model for inorganic mercury was developed over a range of environmental conditions to identify distribution of dissolved mercury species and potential transformations of mercury at near source environment. Simulation of phase transitions for metallic mercury, mercury(II) chloride and mercury sulfide with temperature increase showed that complete vaporization of metallic mercury and mercury(II) chloride were achieved below the boiling point of water. The effect of soil compositions on mercury removal was also evaluated to better understand thermal remediation process. Higher vapor pressures expected both from soil pore water and inorganic carbonate minerals in soil as well as creation of permeability were significant for complete vaporization and removal of mercury. PMID:26275352

  9. Forms of mercury in Everglades agricultural soils

    SciTech Connect

    Patrick, W.H.; Parkpian, P.; Gambrell, R.P.

    1995-12-31

    Seventeen surface soils from the Florida Everglades Agricultural Area were subjected to selective extraction for water soluble, amorphous iron oxide bound, organic, and residual mercury. Organic bound mercury was the major fraction and represented 51% of the total mercury for the 17 soils studied. Iron oxide bound mercury and water soluble mercury accounted for only 5 percent each of the total mercury. Eight weeks incubation of the soils under aerobic and anaerobic conditions showed little effect of aeration status on the transformations among the various chemical forms.

  10. Accumulation and oxidation of elemental mercury in tropical soils.

    PubMed

    Soares, Liliane Catone; Egreja Filho, Fernando Barboza; Linhares, Lucília Alves; Windmoller, Cláudia Carvalhinho; Yoshida, Maria Irene

    2015-09-01

    The role of chemical and mineralogical soil properties in the retention and oxidation of atmospheric mercury in tropical soils is discussed based on thermal desorption analysis. The retention of gaseous mercury by tropical soils varied greatly both quantitatively and qualitatively with soil type. The average natural mercury content of soils was 0.08 ± 0.06 μg g(-1) with a maximum of 0.215 ± 0.009 μg g(-1). After gaseous Hg(0) incubation experiments, mercury content of investigated soils ranged from 0.6 ± 0.2 to 735 ± 23 μg g(-1), with a mean value of 44 ± 146 μg g(-1). Comparatively, A horizon of almost all soil types adsorbed more mercury than B horizon from the same soil, which demonstrates the key role of organic matter in mercury adsorption. In addition to organic matter, pH and CEC also appear to be important soil characteristics for the adsorption of mercury. All thermograms showed Hg(2+) peaks, which were predominant in most of them, indicating that elemental mercury oxidized in tropical soils. After four months of incubation, the thermograms showed oxidation levels from 70% to 100%. As none of the samples presented only the Hg(0) peak, and the soils retained varying amounts of mercury despite exposure under the same incubation conditions, it became clear that oxidation occurred on soil surface. Organic matter seemed to play a key role in mercury oxidation through complexation/stabilization of the oxidized forms. The lower percentages of available mercury (extracted with KNO3) in A horizons when compared to B horizons support this idea. PMID:25950134

  11. Blood Mercury Level

    EPA Science Inventory

    This indicator describes the presence of mercury in the blood of segments of the U.S. population from 1999 to 2008. Mercury can cause developmental and neurological problems, especially in children. This indicator shows how exposure to this environmental contaminant has change...

  12. OCCURRENCE OF MICROORGANISMS RESISTANT TO MERCURY IN MERCURY CONTAMINATED SOILS AND SEDIMENTS IN PAVLODAR, KAZAKHSTAN

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is extensive mercury contamination of soil surrounding a chloralkali plant in Pavlodar, Kazakhstan that operated from 1970 to 1990. High-level mercury contamination exists within the confines of the plant, at nearby off-site waste storage and evaporation ponds, and in Balky...

  13. OCCURRENCE OF MERCURY-RESISTANT MICROORGANISMS IN MERCURY-CONTAMINATED SOILS AND SEDIMENTS IN PAVLODAR, KAZAKHSTAN

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is extensive mercury contamination of soil surrounding a chloralkali plant in Pavlodar, Kazakhstan that operated from 1970 to 1990. High-level mercury contamination exists within the confines of the plant, at nearby off-site waste storage and evaporation ponds, and in Balky...

  14. Assessing the Mercury Content in Mediterranean Calcareous Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gil, C.; Ramos-Miras, J.; Roca-Pérez, L.; Boluda, R.; Bech, J.

    2010-05-01

    Soil constitutes the greatest reservoir of mercury in terrestrial ecosystems and is the main pollution route for aquatic systems and the food chain. We determined the mercury total content in Mediterranean calcareous soils by thermal decomposition, amalgamation and atomic absorption spectrophotometry, and on the base of the background level and geochemical baseline concentration concepts the contamination degree in some agricultural soils were assessed. Fifty-three samples from five soil use groups (natural, dry land, greenhouse, irrigated and rice farming soils) were analysed. The results showed that the levels of mercury in these soils were 9.4 to 1585 μg kg-1. Soil organic matter has been related to mercury content in soils. The background level, geochemical baseline concentrations and the reference value were established from natural soils being the followings: 25.1, 9.8-64.3, and 64.3 μg kg-1. These results indicated that rice farming soils (gleyic-calcaric Fluvisols, Fluvaquents), irrigated soils (calcaric Fluvisols, Xerofluvents) and some greenhouse soils (cumulic Anthrosols) presented much higher levels, indicating contamination. Hg accumulation in these soils was associated with local anthropogenic sources.

  15. Phytoremediation of mercury-contaminated soils by Jatropha curcas.

    PubMed

    Marrugo-Negrete, José; Durango-Hernández, José; Pinedo-Hernández, José; Olivero-Verbel, Jesús; Díez, Sergi

    2015-05-01

    Jatropha curcas plants species were tested to evaluate their phytoremediation capacity in soils contaminated by different levels of mercury. The experimental treatments consisted of four levels of mercury concentrations in the soil - T0, T1, T5, and T10 (0, 1, 5, and 10 μg Hg per g soil, respectively). The total mercury content absorbed by the different plant tissues (roots, stems and leaves) was determined during four months of exposure. The growth behavior, mercury accumulation, translocation (TF) and bioconcentration (BCF) factors were determined. The different tissues in J. curcas can be classified in order of decreasing accumulation Hg as follows: roots>leaves>stems. The highest cumulative absorption of the metal occurred between the second and third month of exposure. Maximum TF was detected during the second month and ranged from 0.79 to 1.04 for the different mercury concentrations. Values of BCF ranged from 0.21 to 1.43. Soils with T1 showed significantly higher BCF (1.43) followed by T10 (1.32) and T5 (0.91), all of them at the fourth month. On the other hand TFs were low (range 0.10-0.26) at the en of the experiment. The maximum reduction of biomass (16.3%) occurred for T10 (10 μg Hg g(-1)). In sum, J. curcas species showed high BCFs and low TFs, and their use could be a promising approach to remediating mercury-contaminated soils. PMID:25655698

  16. Sustainable remediation of mercury contaminated soils by thermal desorption.

    PubMed

    Sierra, María J; Millán, Rocio; López, Félix A; Alguacil, Francisco J; Cañadas, Inmaculada

    2016-03-01

    Mercury soil contamination is an important environmental problem that needs the development of sustainable and efficient decontamination strategies. This work is focused on the application of a remediation technique that maintains soil ecological and environmental services to the extent possible as well as search for alternative sustainable land uses. Controlled thermal desorption using a solar furnace at pilot scale was applied to different types of soils, stablishing the temperature necessary to assure the functionality of these soils and avoid the Hg exchange to the other environmental compartments. Soil mercury content evolution (total, soluble, and exchangeable) as temperature increases and induced changes in selected soil quality indicators are studied and assessed. On total Hg, the temperature at which it is reduced until acceptable levels depends on the intended soil use and on how restrictive are the regulations. For commercial, residential, or industrial uses, soil samples should be heated to temperatures higher than 280 °C, at which more than 80 % of the total Hg is released, reaching the established legal total Hg level and avoiding eventual risks derived from high available Hg concentrations. For agricultural use or soil natural preservation, conversely, maintenance of acceptable levels of soil quality limit heating temperatures, and additional treatments must be considered to reduce available Hg. Besides total Hg concentration in soils, available Hg should be considered to make final decisions on remediation treatments and potential future uses. Graphical Abstract Solar energy use for remediation of soils affected by mercury. PMID:26545893

  17. ALTERNATIVE FIELD METHODS TO TREAT MERCURY IN SOIL

    SciTech Connect

    Ernest F. Stine Jr; Steven T. Downey

    2002-08-14

    U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) used large quantities of mercury in the uranium separating process from the 1950s until the late 1980s in support of national defense. Some of this mercury, as well as other hazardous metals and radionuclides, found its way into, and under, several buildings, soil and subsurface soils and into some of the surface waters. Several of these areas may pose potential health or environmental risks and must be dealt with under current environmental regulations. DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) awarded a contract ''Alternative Field Methods to Treat Mercury in Soil'' to IT Group, Knoxville TN (IT) and its subcontractor NFS, Erwin, TN to identify remedial methods to clean up mercury-contaminated high-clay content soils using proven treatment chemistries. The sites of interest were the Y-12 National Security Complex located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, the David Witherspoon properties located in Knoxville, Tennessee, and at other similarly contaminated sites. The primary laboratory-scale contract objectives were (1) to safely retrieve and test samples of contaminated soil in an approved laboratory and (2) to determine an acceptable treatment method to ensure that the mercury does not leach from the soil above regulatory levels. The leaching requirements were to meet the TC (0.2 mg/l) and UTS (0.025 mg/l) TCLP criteria. In-situ treatments were preferred to control potential mercury vapors emissions and liquid mercury spills associated with ex-situ treatments. All laboratory work was conducted in IT's and NFS laboratories. Mercury contaminated nonradioactive soil from under the Alpha 2 building in the Y-12 complex was used. This soils contained insufficient levels of leachable mercury and resulted in TCLP mercury concentrations that were similar to the applicable LDR limits. The soil was spiked at multiple levels with metallic (up to 6000 mg/l) and soluble mercury compounds (up to 500 mg/kg) to simulate expected ranges of mercury

  18. MERCURY RELEASE FROM DISTURBED ANOXIC SOILS

    SciTech Connect

    Jaroslav Solc; Bethany A. Bolles

    2001-07-16

    The primary objectives of experiments conducted at the Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) were to provide information on the secondary release of mercury from contaminated anoxic sediments to an aqueous environment after disturbance/change of in situ physical conditions and to evaluate its migration and partitioning under controlled conditions, including implications of these processes for treatment of contaminated soils. Experimental work included (1) characterization of the mercury-contaminated sediment; (2) field bench-scale dredging simulation; (3) laboratory column study to evaluate a longer-term response to sediment disturbance; (4) mercury volatilization from sediment during controlled drying; (5) resaturation experiments to evaluate the potential for secondary release of residual mercury after disturbance, transport, drying, and resaturation, which simulate a typical scenario during soil excavation and transport to waste disposal facilities; and (6) mercury speciation and potential for methylation during column incubation experiments.

  19. ALTERNATIVE FIELD METHODS TO TREAT MERCURY IN SOIL

    SciTech Connect

    Ernie F. Stine

    2002-08-14

    E&I. The company will be denoted as ''IT'' for the rest of the document since the original contract was awarded to IT. This report details IT, Knoxville, TN and its subcontractor Nuclear Fuels Services (NFS) study to investigate alternative mercury treatment technology. The IT/NFS team demonstrated two processes for the amalgamation/stabilization/fixation of mercury and potentially Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) and radionuclide-contaminated soils. This project was to identify and demonstrate remedial methods to clean up mercury-contaminated soil using established treatment chemistries on soil from the Oak Ridge Reservation, Y-12 National Security Complex, the off-site David Witherspoon properties, and/or other similarly contaminated sites. Soil from the basement of Y-12 Plant Alpha 2 Building at the Oak Ridge Reservation was received at IT and NFS on December 20, 2001. Soils from the other locations were not investigated. The soil had background levels of radioactivity and had all eight RCRA metals well below the Toxicity Characteristic (TC) criteria. This project addresses the new DOE Environmental Management Thrust 2 ''Alternative Approaches to Current High Risk/High Cost Baselines''. Successful completion of this project will provide a step-change in DOE's treatment ability.

  20. Mercury contamination of soil as the result of long-term phosphate fertilizer production.

    PubMed

    Mirlean, Nicolai; Baisch, Paulo; Machado, Isabel; Shumilin, Evgueni

    2008-09-01

    This study was aimed at determining the range and spatial distribution of mercury in a geographical area influenced by the emissions of phosphate fertilizers industries in Rio Grande, Brazil. The case study demonstrated that mercury concentrations in a fine fraction of the surface soil close to the fertilizer factory reached levels as high as 800 microg kg(-1). Increased mercury concentrations were detected up to 60 cm below the soil surface. Further, a significant impact of the elevated mercury levels was manifested in a 1-km zone around the factory. Technical grade sulfuric acid employed in superphosphate production is considered the principal source of this mercury contamination. PMID:18587516

  1. Field controlled experiments on the physiological responses of maize (Zea mays L.) leaves to low-level air and soil mercury exposures.

    PubMed

    Niu, Zhenchuan; Zhang, Xiaoshan; Wang, Sen; Zeng, Ming; Wang, Zhangwei; Zhang, Yi; Ci, Zhijia

    2014-01-01

    Thousands of tons of mercury (Hg) are released from anthropogenic and natural sources to the atmosphere in a gaseous elemental form per year, yet little is known regarding the influence of airborne Hg on the physiological activities of plant leaves. In the present study, the effects of low-level air and soil Hg exposures on the gas exchange parameters of maize (Zea mays L.) leaves and their accumulation of Hg, proline, and malondialdehyde (MDA) were examined via field open-top chamber and Hg-enriched soil experiments, respectively. Low-level air Hg exposures (<50 ng m(-3)) had little effects on the gas exchange parameters of maize leaves during most of the daytime (p > 0.05). However, both the net photosynthesis rate and carboxylation efficiency of maize leaves exposed to 50 ng m(-3) air Hg were significantly lower than those exposed to 2 ng m(-3) air Hg in late morning (p < 0.05). Additionally, the Hg, proline, and MDA concentrations in maize leaves exposed to 20 and 50 ng m(-3) air Hg were significantly higher than those exposed to 2 ng m(-3) air Hg (p < 0.05). These results indicated that the increase in airborne Hg potentially damaged functional photosynthetic apparatus in plant leaves, inducing free proline accumulation and membrane lipid peroxidation. Due to minor translocation of soil Hg to the leaves, low-level soil Hg exposures (<1,000 ng g(-1)) had no significant influences on the gas exchange parameters, or the Hg, proline, and MDA concentrations in maize leaves (p > 0.05). Compared to soil Hg, airborne Hg easily caused physiological stress to plant leaves. The effects of increasing atmospheric Hg concentration on plant physiology should be of concern. PMID:23943002

  2. Mercury in soils and microbial biomass of the South Kirgizstan subregion of the biosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vadim, Ermakov; Valentina, Danilova; Ul'yana, Gulyaeva

    2016-04-01

    The purpose of this investigation was to clear up the role of soil microflora in the mercury concentration by microorganisms as they are related to a problem of the soil remediation. To complete the tasks as assigned, 150 samples of both various soils formed over the ore bodies outside the ore occurrence zones and waste dumps have been taken in the areas of South Kirgizstan Some 45 soil samples (horizon A, 0-20 cm) and dumps were used for microbiological analyses [1, 2]. The soil cover as seen in the work areas is represented by Haplic Calcisols (gray) soils. All the soils are generally calcareous, in some cases salted, and have various compositions. To grow the microbial biomass in order to determine mercury content levels in there, some soil media characterized by natural concentrations, ratios and forms of the compounds of these metals were used The results showed that the mercury concentrations in soils of the sampling area varied from 0.028 to 357.3 mg/kg. The highest metal content indices (up to 357.3 mg/kg) were found for soils formed over ores, and waste dumps. The lowest mercury content (0.028 to 0.066 mg/kg) was found for soils of the control area. The data on mercury and/or antimony accumulation by the biomass of soil microorganisms grown in soil media are represented. The soil samples having various mercury levels were collected in the South Kirgizstan subregion of the biosphere. It was established that the accumulation of the metals by soil microflora depends on their content in the soil, the microorganism growth is strongly inhibited at mercury concentration of 300 mg/kg in soil. A direct and reliable correlation between the metal content level in soils and their concentration by microorganisms is found. Within the background sites a tendency of increase in mercury extraction from the soil with 1 M HCl solution, in particular from salted soils is observed. In contrast, in the conditions of an excess of mercury content in soils of ore grounds, a weak

  3. Mercury and plants in contaminated soils. 2: Environmental and physiological factors governing mercury flux to the atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Leonard, T.L.; Gustin, M.S.; Fernandez, G.C.J.; Taylor, G.E. Jr.

    1998-10-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of physiological and environmental factors in governing the flux of elemental mercury from plants to the atmosphere. Five species (Lepidium latifolium, Artemisia douglasiana, Caulanthus sp., Fragaria vesca, and Eucalyptus globulus) with different ecological and physiological attributes and growing in soils with high levels of mercury contamination were examined. Studies were conducted in a whole-plant, gas-exchange chamber providing precise control of environmental conditions, and mercury flux was estimated using the mass balance approach. Mercury flux increased linearly as a function of temperature within the range of 20 to 40 C, and the mean temperature coefficient (Q{sub 10}) was 2.04. The temperature dependence of mercury flux was attributed to changes in the contaminant`s vapor pressure in the leaf interior. Mercury flux from foliage increased linearly as a function of irradiance within the range of 500 to 1,500 {micro}mol m/s, and the light enhancement of mercury flux was within a factor of 2.0 to 2.5 for all species. Even though the leaf-to-atmosphere diffusive path for mercury vapor from foliage is similar to that of water vapor, stomatal conductance played a secondary role in governing mercury flux. In a quantitative comparison with other studies in both laboratory and field settings, a strong linear relationship is evident between mercury vapor flux and the natural logarithm of soil mercury concentration, and this relationship may have predictive value in developing regional- and continental-scale mercury budgets. The most critical factors governing mercury flux from plants are mercury concentration in the soil, leaf area index, temperature, and irradiance.

  4. Spatial distribution of mercury and arsenic levels in water, soil and cassava plants in a community with long history of gold mining in Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Nyanza, Elias C; Dewey, Deborah; Thomas, Deborah S K; Davey, Mark; Ngallaba, Sospatro E

    2014-12-01

    This study examined the spatial distribution of total mercury (THg) and total arsenic (TAs) in water, soil and cassava (Manihot esculenta) (leaves and roots) samples taken from areas in Rwamagasa village in northwestern Tanzania where daily living activities occur in close proximity to extensive artisanal and small scale gold mining. Results indicated that 33.3 % of the water sources had THg levels above the WHO guideline of 1.0 µg/L for safe drinking water, and 12.5 % had TAs levels above 10 µg/L. Cassava leaves were found to have higher THg (ranging from 8.3 to 167 µg/kg) and TAs (ranging from 60 to 1,120 µg/kg) levels than cassava roots, which ranged between 1.2-8.3 µg/kg for THg and 25-310 µg/kg for TAs. Concentrations of THg and TAs in soil samples ranged between 5.8-1,759 and 183-20,298 µg/kg, respectively. Both THg and TAs were found to be distributed throughout Rwamagasa village. PMID:24923470

  5. The relationship between mental retardation and developmental delays in children and the levels of arsenic, mercury and lead in soil samples taken near their mother's residence during pregnancy

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yuan; McDermott, Suzanne; Lawson, Andrew; Aelion, C. Marjorie

    2010-01-01

    This study was designed to evaluate the association between lead, mercury, and arsenic in the soil near maternal residences during pregnancy and mental retardation or developmental disability (MR/DD) in children. The study was conducted using 6,048 mothers who did not move throughout their pregnancies and lived within six strips of land in South Carolina and were insured by Medicaid between January 1, 1997 and December 31, 2002. The mother child pairs were then followed until June 1, 2008, through their Medicaid reimbursement files, to identify children diagnosed with MR/DD. The soil was sampled for mercury (Hg), lead (Pb), and As based on a uniform grid, and the soil concentrations were Kriged to estimate chemical concentration at individual locations. We identified a significant relationship between MR/DD and As, and the form of the relationship was nonlinear, after controlling for other known risk factors. PMID:20045663

  6. Mercury in soil gas and air--A potential tool in mineral exploration

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCarthy, Joseph Howard; Vaughn, W.W.; Learned, R.E.; Meuschke, J.L.

    1969-01-01

    The mercury content in soil gas and in the atmosphere was measured in several mining districts to test the possibility that the mercury content in the atmosphere is higher over ore deposits than over barren ground. At Cortez, Nev., the distribution of anorhalous amounts of mercury in the air collected at ground level (soil gas) correlates well with the distribution of gold-bearing rocks that are covered by as much as 100 feet of gravel. The mercury content in the atmosphere collected at an altitude of 200 feet by an aircraft was 20 times background over a mercury posit and 10 times background over two porphyry copper deposits. Measurement of mercury in soil gas and air may prove to be a valuable exploration tool.

  7. Mercury levels in feathers of Magellanic penguins.

    PubMed

    Frias, Jorgelina E; Gil, Mónica N; Esteves, José L; García Borboroglu, Pablo; Kane, Olivia J; Smith, Jeff R; Boersma, P Dee

    2012-06-01

    Feathers are useful to determine mercury (Hg) contamination. We evaluated the mercury concentration in feathers of Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus) age 1.5 years to 25 years at Punta Tombo, Argentina before and during their molt. Mercury ranged between <1.4 and 367 ng/g dry weight, with three extreme high values (8996 ng/g, 3011 ng/g and 1340 ng/g) all in young adults. The median concentration was lowest for juveniles and significantly higher for adults but with high variation among older adults. Males and females had similar mercury loads. Compared with other penguin species, concentrations in Magellanic penguins were low. Mercury levels for Magellanic penguins in the Southwest Atlantic for older adults averaged 206±98 ng/g, and serve as a baseline for biomonitoring and/or ecotoxicological studies. PMID:22465054

  8. A new technology for the treatment of mercury contaminated water and soils.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, J M; Walsh, T; Lam, T

    2003-07-01

    A new technology has been developed for the treatment of contaminated water and soils with lignin derivatives. It has been demonstrated that this technology can be used in the process of removal of high levels of mercury from water, and in the immobilization of leachable mercury in contaminated soils. Lignin derivatives contain an abundance of oxygen-containing functional groups such as phenolic, carboxyl, sulfonyl, alcoholic and enolic structures, which will form lignin-metal macromolecular complexes with high stability through ionic and coordinate covalent bonding. This feature is the basis for the application of lignin derivatives in the removal of metal contaminants from water and in the immobilization of leachable metal in soils or sediments. Tests have confirmed that lignin derivatives are capable of combining with a variety of metal ions including chromium, copper, lead, zinc, mercury, nickel and aluminum. In the new water treatment process, lignin derivatives are dissolved in mercury contaminated water to complex mercury in an exceptionally stable form of a lignin-mercury colloid. The lignin-mercury colloid is then coagulated through the addition of a flocculating agent such as ferric chloride. Under optimized conditions, a dean effluent is produced with a residual mercury level of less than 1 microg l(-1), together with a ferric sludge that is not leachable by TCLP, EPA Method 1311. In the new soil stabilization process, a new solid adsorbent of ferric-lignin is blended with mercury contaminated soil. This solid adsorbent can stabilize the soil by complexing with mercury and, thereby, greatly reduce the TCLP mercury of soil. PMID:12916841

  9. Mercury

    MedlinePlus

    Mercury is an element that is found in air, water and soil. It has several forms. Metallic mercury is a shiny, silver-white, ... colorless, odorless gas. It also combines with other elements to form powders or crystals. Mercury is in ...

  10. Behavior and transport of mercury in the soil profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pokharel, A. K.; Obrist, D.

    2011-12-01

    The goal of this study was to conduct continuous monitoring of soil mercury (Hg) concentration at different depths in the background soil profile for six months. For this study, we developed and set-up a continuous CO2 and Hg0 concentration measurements using semi-permeable Teflon tubing, and we discuss in detail the system configuration and system performance for the measurements of soil Hg. Teflon tubing was placed at three different soil depths (7 cm, 20 cm, and 40 cm) in two replicate locations in Sagehen Creek Field station near Truckee, California and in Blodgett Forest near Georgetown, California. Auxilliary measurements included ambient air Hg and CO2 concentrations and TDRs and temperatures sensors to measure soil water content and soil temperature. We observed consistently lower Hg concentrations in the soil pores compared to ambient air at both sites and at all soil depths, which is indicative of a net uptake and sorption of Hg in the soils. Top of the soils contained higher pore Hg concentration than deeper levels, and were characterized by strong seasonal variability. Lowest soil Hg levels, and hence likely highest Hg0 sorption, was associated with driest conditions in the mid-summer. Results of this study indicate a pronounced sink activity of soils for Hg in these two Sierra Nevada forest soils, which is in contrast to the notion of predominant source activity of terrestrial soils to the atmosphere. A reason for this discrepancy may be that emissions of Hg may pre-dominantly originate from the surface, while deeper, mineral soil layers provide a net sink for atmospheric Hg.

  11. Accumulation of mercury in selected plant species grown in soils contaminated with different mercury compounds

    SciTech Connect

    Su, Yi; Han, Fengxiang; Shiyab, Safwan; Chen, Jian; Monts, David L.

    2007-07-01

    The objective of our research is to screen and search for suitable plant species for phyto-remediation of mercury-contaminated soil. Currently our effort is specifically focused on mercury removal from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) sites, where mercury contamination is a major concern. In order to cost effectively implement mercury remediation efforts, it is necessary now to obtain an improved understanding of biological means of removing mercury and mercury compounds.. Phyto-remediation is a technology that uses various plants to degrade, extract, contain, or immobilize contaminants from soil and water. In particular, phyto-extraction is the uptake of contaminants by plant roots and translocation within the plants to shoots or leaves. Contaminants are generally removed by harvesting the plants. We have investigated phyto-extraction of mercury from contaminated soil by using some of the known metal-accumulating plants since no natural plant species with mercury hyper-accumulating properties has yet been identified. Different natural plant species have been studied for mercury uptake, accumulation, toxicity and overall mercury removal efficiency. Various mercury compounds, such as HgS, HgCl{sub 2}, and Hg(NO{sub 3}){sub 2}, were used as contaminant sources. Different types of soil were examined and chosen for phyto-remediation experiments. We have applied microscopy and diffuse reflectance spectrometry as well as conventional analytical chemistry to monitor the phyto-remediation processes of mercury uptake, translocation and accumulation, and the physiological impact of mercury contaminants on selected plant species. Our results indicate that certain plant species, such as beard grass (Polypogon monospeliensis), accumulated a very limited amount of mercury in the shoots (<65 mg/kg), even though root mercury accumulation is significant (maximum 2298 mg/kg). Consequently, this plant species may not be suitable for mercury phyto-remediation. Other plant species

  12. Effects of the soil microbial community on mobile proportions and speciation of mercury (Hg) in contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Száková, Jiřina; Havlíčková, Jitka; Šípková, Adéla; Gabriel, Jiří; Švec, Karel; Baldrian, Petr; Sysalová, Jiřina; Coufalík, Pavel; Červenka, Rostislav; Zvěřina, Ondřej; Komárek, Josef; Tlustoš, Pavel

    2016-01-01

    The precise characterization of the behavior of individual microorganisms in the presence of increased mercury contents in soil is necessary for better elucidation of the fate of mercury in the soil environment. In our investigation, resistant bacterial strains isolated from two mercury contaminated soils, represented by Paenibacillus alginolyticus, Burkholderia glathei, Burkholderia sp., and Pseudomonas sp., were used. Two differently contaminated soils (0.5 and 7 mg kg(-1) total mercury) were chosen. Preliminary soil analysis showed the presence of methylmercury and phenylmercury with the higher soil mercury level. Modified rhizobox experiments were performed to assess the ability of mercury accumulating strains to deplete the mobile and mobilizable mercury portions in the soil by modification; microbial agar cultures were used rather than the plant root zone. A sequential extraction procedure was performed to release the following mercury fractions: water soluble, extracted in acidic conditions, bound to humic substances, elemental, and bound to complexes, HgS and residual. Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and a single-purpose atomic absorption spectrometer (AMA-254) were applied for mercury determination in the samples and extracts. Gas chromatography coupled to atomic fluorescence spectrometry (GC-AFS) was used for the determination of organomercury compounds. The analysis of the microbial community at the end of the experiment showed a 42% abundance of Paenibacillus sp. followed by Acetivibrio sp., Brevibacillus sp., Cohnella sp., Lysinibacillus sp., and Clostridium sp. not exceeding 2% abundance. The results suggest importance of Paenibacillus sp. in Hg transformation processes. This genus should be tested for potential bioremediation use in further research. PMID:26761522

  13. Occupational exposure to mercury. What is a safe level?

    PubMed Central

    Moienafshari, R.; Bar-Oz, B.; Koren, G.

    1999-01-01

    QUESTION: One of my pregnant patients, a dental hygienist, uses mercury in her workplace, but appears to have no symptoms of mercury toxicity. She has heard that mercury might affect her fetus. What should I recommend to her? What is a safe level of mercury in the air for pregnant women? ANSWER: Testing for levels of mercury in whole blood and, preferably, urine is useful for confirming exposure. Currently, mercury vapour concentrations greater than 0.01 mg/m3 are considered unsafe. Also, women of childbearing age should avoid contact with mercury salts in the workplace. PMID:10889853

  14. Potential anthropogenic mobilisation of mercury and arsenic from soils on mineralised rocks, Northland, New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Craw, D

    2005-02-01

    Eroded roots of hot spring systems in Northland, New Zealand consist of mineralised rocks containing sulfide minerals. Marcasite and cinnabar are the dominant sulfides with subordinate pyrite. Deep weathering and leached soil formation has occurred in a warm temperate to subtropical climate with up to 3 m/year rainfall. Decomposition of the iron sulfides in natural and anthropogenic rock exposures yields acid rock drainage with pH typically between 2 and 4, and locally down to pH 1. Soils and weathered rocks developed on basement greywacke have negligible acid neutralisation capacity. Natural rainforest soils have pH between 4 and 5 on unmineralised greywacke, and pH is as low as 3.5 in soils on mineralised rocks. Roads with aggregate made from mineralised rocks have pH near 3, and quarries from which the rock was extracted can have pH down to 1. Mineralised rocks are enriched in arsenic and mercury, both of which are environmentally available as solid solution impurities in iron sulfides and phosphate minerals. Base metals (Cu, Pb, Zn) are present at low levels in soils, at or below typical basement rock background. Decomposition of the iron sulfides releases the solid solution arsenic and mercury into the acid rock drainage solutions. Phosphate minerals release their impurities only under strongly acid conditions (pH<1). Arsenic and mercury are adsorbed on to iron oxyhydroxides in soils, concentrated in the C horizon, with up to 4000 ppm arsenic and 100 ppm mercury. Waters emanating from acid rock drainage areas have arsenic and mercury below drinking water limits. Leaching experiments and theoretical predictions indicate that both arsenic and mercury are least mobile in acid soils, at pH of c. 3-4. This optimum pH range for fixation of arsenic and mercury on iron oxyhydroxides in soils is similar to natural pH at the field site of this study. However, neutralisation of acid soils developed on mineralised rocks is likely to decrease adsorption and enhance

  15. Mercury mobility and bioavailability in soil from contaminated area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boszke, Leonard; Kowalski, Artur; Astel, Aleksander; Barański, Andrzej; Gworek, Barbara; Siepak, Jerzy

    2008-09-01

    The mobility and bioavailability of mercury in the soil from the area near a plant using elemental mercury for manufacturing thermometers, areometers, glass energy switches and other articles made of technical glass has been evaluated. Mercury has been determined by sequential extraction method and with additional thermo desorption stage to determine elemental mercury. The procedure of sequential extraction involves five subsequent stages performed with the solutions of chloroform, deionized water, 0.5 M HCl, 0.2 M NaOH and aqua regia. The mean concentration of total mercury in soil was 147 ± 107 μg g-1 dry mass (range 62-393), and the fractionation revealed that mercury was mainly bound to sulfides 56 ± 8% (range 45-66), one of the most biounavailable and immobile species of mercury in the environment. The fractions that brought lower contribution to the total mercury content were semi-mobile humic matter 22 ± 9% (range 11-34) and elemental mercury 17 ± 5% (range 8-23). The contributions brought by the highly mobile and toxic organomercury compounds were still lower 2.3 ± 2.7% (range 0.01-6.5). The lowest contributions brought the acid-soluble mercury 1.5 ± 1.3% (range 0.1-3.5) and water-soluble mercury 1.0 ± 0.3% (range 0.6-1.7). The surface layer of soil (0-20 cm) was characterized by higher mercury concentrations than that of the subsurface soil (60-80 cm), but the fractional contributions were comparable. The comparison of mercury fractionation results obtained in this study for highly polluted soils with results of fractionation of uncontaminated or moderately contaminated samples of soil and sediments had not shown significant statistical differences; however, in the last samples elemental mercury is usually present at very low concentrations. On the basis of obtained correlation coefficients it seems that elemental mercury soils from “Areometer” plant are contaminated; the main transformation is its vaporization to atmosphere and oxidation to

  16. In situ remediation technologies for mercury-contaminated soil

    DOE PAGESBeta

    He, Feng; Gao, Jie; Pierce, Eric; Strong, P. J.; Wang, Hailong; Liang, Liyuan

    2015-04-09

    A pollutant that poses significant risks to humans and the environment is mercury from anthropogenic activities. In soils, mercury remediation can be technically challenging and costly, depending on the subsurface mercury distribution, the types of mercury species, and the regulatory requirements. Our paper introduces the chemistry of mercury and its implications for in situ mercury remediation, which is followed by a detailed discussion of several in situ Hg remediation technologies in terms of applicability, cost, advantages, and disadvantages. The effect of Hg speciation on remediation performance, as well as Hg transformation during different remediation processes, was detailed. Thermal desorption, electrokinetic,more » and soil flushing/washing treatments are removal technologies that mobilize and capture insoluble Hg species, while containment, solidification/stabilization, and vitrification immobilize Hg by converting it to less soluble forms. We also discussed two emerging technologies, phytoremediation and nanotechnology, in this review.« less

  17. In situ remediation technologies for mercury-contaminated soil

    SciTech Connect

    He, Feng; Gao, Jie; Pierce, Eric; Strong, P. J.; Wang, Hailong; Liang, Liyuan

    2015-04-09

    A pollutant that poses significant risks to humans and the environment is mercury from anthropogenic activities. In soils, mercury remediation can be technically challenging and costly, depending on the subsurface mercury distribution, the types of mercury species, and the regulatory requirements. Our paper introduces the chemistry of mercury and its implications for in situ mercury remediation, which is followed by a detailed discussion of several in situ Hg remediation technologies in terms of applicability, cost, advantages, and disadvantages. The effect of Hg speciation on remediation performance, as well as Hg transformation during different remediation processes, was detailed. Thermal desorption, electrokinetic, and soil flushing/washing treatments are removal technologies that mobilize and capture insoluble Hg species, while containment, solidification/stabilization, and vitrification immobilize Hg by converting it to less soluble forms. We also discussed two emerging technologies, phytoremediation and nanotechnology, in this review.

  18. In situ remediation technologies for mercury-contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    He, Feng; Gao, Jie; Pierce, Eric; Strong, P J; Wang, Hailong; Liang, Liyuan

    2015-06-01

    Mercury from anthropogenic activities is a pollutant that poses significant risks to humans and the environment. In soils, mercury remediation can be technically challenging and costly, depending on the subsurface mercury distribution, the types of mercury species, and the regulatory requirements. This paper introduces the chemistry of mercury and its implications for in situ mercury remediation, which is followed by a detailed discussion of several in situ Hg remediation technologies in terms of applicability, cost, advantages, and disadvantages. The effect of Hg speciation on remediation performance, as well as Hg transformation during different remediation processes, was detailed. Thermal desorption, electrokinetic, and soil flushing/washing treatments are removal technologies that mobilize and capture insoluble Hg species, while containment, solidification/stabilization, and vitrification immobilize Hg by converting it to less soluble forms. Two emerging technologies, phytoremediation and nanotechnology, are also discussed in this review. PMID:25850737

  19. Human and ecological remediation goals for soil mercury at East Fork Poplar Creek, Oak Ridge, TN

    SciTech Connect

    Zafran, F.A.; Cornaby, B.W.; Hadden, C.T. |

    1995-12-31

    Mercury, used in the past production of enriched lithium by the Department of Energy, is the principal chemical of concern in the 14-mile floodplain of East Fork Poplar Creek (EFPC). SAIC has developed risk-based remediation goal options (RGOS) for mercury in EFPC soils to protect the most sensitive human receptors. The existing chronic oral RfD for mercury is based on exposure of laboratory species to mercuric chloride. However, speciation and leaching/availability studies (conducted by EPA EMSL and Oak Ridge National Laboratory) indicated less soluble and less toxic mercury species, principally mercuric sulfide, with measurable quantities of metallic mercury also present, predominate in EFPC floodplain soils. SAIC derived human health RGOs using deterministic and probabilistic methods and incorporated the probability density function for bioavailability of mercury species from leaching/availability data generated by ORNL. Monte Carlo simulation was used in uncertainty analysis and supported the derivation of a protective, but realistic risk-based remediation goal of 400 mg mercury/kg soil. For ecological risk assessment, RGOs were based on risks through food chains from contaminants in soil. The authors describe a terrestrial food-chain model of contaminant transfer to primary producers, first-order consumers, mid-level predators, and top-level predators. The model uses published toxicity data, site-specific contaminant concentrations, and bioaccumulation factors calculated from measured body burdens of floodplain organisms to compute RGOs for various combinations of exposure parameters. Model calculations show that under reasonably conservative conditions, mid-level predators have the highest exposures relative to dietary limits and, therefore, require the lowest soil-mercury RGOs. Mercury concentrations of {approximately}500 mg/kg are protective of the receptor populations exposed through food chains at this site.

  20. The role of natural purified humic acids in modifying mercury accessibility in water and soil

    SciTech Connect

    Cattani, I.; Zhang, H.; Beone, G.M.; Del Re, A.A.M.; Boccelli, R.; Trevisan, M.

    2009-03-15

    We investigated the influence of different humic acids (HAs, extracted from lignite, compost, and forest soil) on mercury mobility and availability both in a model solution and in soil samples from a mercury-polluted region. The technique of diffusive gradients in thin-films (DGT), which is capable of measuring: (i) free metal in solution: (ii) dissociated metal complexes previously mobilized by HA; (iii) mobilized metal-HA complexes that liberate metals by dissociation or by exchange reaction between the metal-HA complexes and the chelating groups on the resin-gel, was used in solutions and soils. The DGT measurements in solution, together with ultrafiltration, allowed estimation of the lability of Hg-HA complexes. Ultrafiltration results were also compared with predictions made by the windermere humic-aqueous model (WHAM). According to both these different approaches, Hg{sup 2+} resulted nearly 100% complexed by HAs, whereas results from ultrafiltration showed that 32 to 72% of the CH{sub 4}Hg{sup +} was bound to the HAs, with higher values for compost and lower values for forest and Aldrich HA. The DGT-measured mercury in soils was below 0.20 {mu}g L{sup -1}, irrespective of the extent of the contamination. Addition of HA increased the concentration of DGT-measured mercury in soil solution up to 100-fold in the contaminated soil and up to 30-fold in the control soil. The level of the increase also depended on the HA. The smallest increase (about 10 times) was found for lignite HA in both control and contaminated soils. The addition of forest HA gave the largest increases in DGT-measured mercury, in particular for the contaminated soil. Overall, the results demonstrated that DGT can be used for estimating the lability of mercury complexes in solution and for verifying enhanced mercury mobility when HA is added to contaminated soils.

  1. Pilot Survey of Levels of Polychlorinated Dibenzo-P-Dioxins (Pcdds), Polychlorinated Dibenzofurans (Pcdfs), Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCB) and Mercury in Rural Soils of the U.S.

    EPA Science Inventory

    soil_thumb.jpg" align="right" vspace = "5" hspace="5" Alt = "Cover of the Pilot Survey Soil Report"> EPA has released a final report entitled, Pilot Survey of Levels of Polychlorinated Dibenzo-p-dioxins, Polychl...

  2. Source identification of soil mercury in the Spanish islands.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez Martín, José Antonio; Carbonell, Gregoria; Nanos, Nikos; Gutiérrez, Carmen

    2013-02-01

    This study spatially analysed the relation between mercury (Hg) content in soil and Hg in rock fragment for the purpose of assessing natural soil Hg contribution compared with Hg from human inputs. We present the Hg content of 318 soil and rock fragment samples from 11 islands distributed into two Spanish archipelagos (the volcanic Canary Islands [Canaries] and the Mediterranean Balearic [Balearic] islands). Assumedly both are located far enough away from continental Hg sources to be able to minimise the effects of diffuse pollution. Physical and chemical soil properties were also specified for the samples. Hg contents were significantly greater in the Balearic limestone soils (61 μg kg(-1)) than in the volcanic soils of the Canaries (33 μg kg(-1)). Hg levels were also greater in topsoil than in rocky fragments, especially on the Balearics. The soil-to-rock ratios varied between 1 and 30. Interestingly, the highest topsoil-to-rock Hg ratio (>16 ×) was found in the vicinity of a coal-fired power plant in Majorca, whereas no similar areas in the Canary archipelago were identified. PMID:23143275

  3. Formation of soluble mercury oxide coatings: Transformation of elemental mercury in soils

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Carrie L.; Watson, David B.; Lester, Brian P.; Howe, Jane Y.; Phillips, Debra H.; He, Feng; Liang, Liyuan; Pierce, Eric M.

    2015-09-21

    In this study, the impact of mercury (Hg) on human and ecological health has been known for decades. Although a treaty signed in 2013 by 147 nations regulates future large-scale mercury emissions, legacy Hg contamination exists worldwide and small-scale releases will continue. The fate of elemental mercury, Hg(0), lost to the subsurface and its potential chemical transformation that can lead to changes in speciation and mobility are poorly understood. Here, we show that Hg(0) beads interact with soil or manganese oxide solids and X-ray spectroscopic analysis indicates that the soluble mercury coatings are HgO. Dissolution studies show that, after reacting with a composite soil, >20 times more Hg is released into water from the coated beads than from a pure liquid mercury bead. An even larger, >700 times, release occurs from coated Hg(0) beads that have been reacted with manganese oxide, suggesting that manganese oxides are involved in the transformation of the Hg(0) beads and creation of the soluble mercury coatings. Although the coatings may inhibit Hg(0) evaporation, the high solubility of the coatings can enhance Hg(II) migration away from the Hg(0)-spill site and result in potential changes in mercury speciation in the soil and increased mercury mobility.

  4. Formation of soluble mercury oxide coatings: Transformation of elemental mercury in soils

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Miller, Carrie L.; Watson, David B.; Lester, Brian P.; Howe, Jane Y.; Phillips, Debra H.; He, Feng; Liang, Liyuan; Pierce, Eric M.

    2015-09-21

    In this study, the impact of mercury (Hg) on human and ecological health has been known for decades. Although a treaty signed in 2013 by 147 nations regulates future large-scale mercury emissions, legacy Hg contamination exists worldwide and small-scale releases will continue. The fate of elemental mercury, Hg(0), lost to the subsurface and its potential chemical transformation that can lead to changes in speciation and mobility are poorly understood. Here, we show that Hg(0) beads interact with soil or manganese oxide solids and X-ray spectroscopic analysis indicates that the soluble mercury coatings are HgO. Dissolution studies show that, after reactingmore » with a composite soil, >20 times more Hg is released into water from the coated beads than from a pure liquid mercury bead. An even larger, >700 times, release occurs from coated Hg(0) beads that have been reacted with manganese oxide, suggesting that manganese oxides are involved in the transformation of the Hg(0) beads and creation of the soluble mercury coatings. Although the coatings may inhibit Hg(0) evaporation, the high solubility of the coatings can enhance Hg(II) migration away from the Hg(0)-spill site and result in potential changes in mercury speciation in the soil and increased mercury mobility.« less

  5. Mercury release from deforested soils triggered by base cation enrichment.

    PubMed

    Farella, N; Lucotte, M; Davidson, R; Daigle, S

    2006-09-01

    The Brazilian Amazon has experienced considerable colonization in the last few decades. Family agriculture based on slash-and-burn enables millions of people to live in that region. However, the poor nutrient content of most Amazonian soils requires cation-rich ashes from the burning of the vegetation biomass for cultivation to be successful, which leads to forest ecosystem degradation, soil erosion and mercury contamination. While recent studies have suggested that mercury present in soils was transferred towards rivers upon deforestation, little is known about the dynamics between agricultural land-use and mercury leaching. In this context, the present study proposes an explanation that illustrates how agricultural land-use triggers mercury loss from soils. This explanation lies in the competition between base cations and mercury in soils which are characterized by a low adsorption capacity. Since these soils are naturally very poor in base cations, the burning of the forest biomass suddenly brings high quantities of base cations to soils, destabilizing the previous equilibrium amongst cations. Base cation enrichment triggers mobility in soil cations, rapidly dislocating mercury atoms. This conclusion comes from principal component analyses illustrating that agricultural land-use was associated with base cation enrichment and mercury depletion. The overall conclusions highlight a pernicious cycle: while soil nutrient enrichment actually occurs through biomass burning, although on a temporary basis, there is a loss in Hg content, which is leached to rivers, entering the aquatic chain, and posing a potential health threat to local populations. Data presented here reflects three decades of deforestation activities, but little is known about the long-term impact of such a disequilibrium. These findings may have repercussions on our understanding of the complex dynamics of deforestation and agriculture worldwide. PMID:16781764

  6. Evaluation of mercury exposure level, clinical diagnosis and treatment for mercury intoxication.

    PubMed

    Ye, Byeong-Jin; Kim, Byoung-Gwon; Jeon, Man-Joong; Kim, Se-Yeong; Kim, Hawn-Cheol; Jang, Tae-Won; Chae, Hong-Jae; Choi, Won-Jun; Ha, Mi-Na; Hong, Young-Seoub

    2016-01-01

    Mercury occurs in various chemical forms, and it is different to health effects according to chemical forms. In consideration of the point, the evaluation of the mercury exposure to human distinguished from occupational and environmental exposure. With strict to manage occupational exposure in factory, it is declined mercury intoxication cases by metallic and inorganic mercury inhalation to occupational exposure. It is increasing to importance in environmental exposure and public health. The focus on the health impact of exposure to mercury is more on chronic, low or moderate grade exposure-albeit a topic of great controversy-, not high concentration exposure by methylmercury, which caused Minamata disease. Recently, the issue of mercury toxicity according to the mercury exposure level, health effects as well as the determination of what mercury levels affect health are in the spotlight and under active discussion. Evaluating the health effects and Biomarker of mercury exposure and establishing diagnosis and treatment standards are very difficult. It can implement that evaluating mercury exposure level for diagnosis by a provocation test uses chelating agent and conducting to appropriate therapy according to the result. but, indications for the therapy of chelating agents with mercury exposure have not yet been fully established. The therapy to symptomatic patients with mercury poisoning is chelating agents, combination therapy with chelating agents, plasma exchange, hemodialysis, plasmapheresis. But the further evaluations are necessary for the effects and side effects with each therapy. PMID:26807265

  7. [Distribution and assessment of mercury in the ambient soil of a municipal solid waste incinerator].

    PubMed

    Xie, Hui-Ting; Zhang, Cheng-Zhong; Xu, Feng; Li, Hai-Feng; Tian, Zhen-Yu; Tang, Chen; Liu, Wen-Bin

    2014-04-01

    The emission of mercury (Hg) from the municipal solid waste incineration has inspired widespread attention, especially regarding to the deposition of Hg in the surrounding soil, which is issued to be the potential negative factor of ambient environment and human health. This study mainly focused on the distributions of Hg in the ambient soil of a municipal solid waste incinerator located in North China. The pollution of the mercury and its risks to the local environment and human health were assessed. Results showed that Hg levels were in the range of 0.015-0.25 mg x kg(-1), with an average (0.088 +/- 0.064) mg x kg(-1). The concentrations of Hg in the soil were obviously influenced by wind direction and they were relatively higher in the northwest (downwind) comparing with that in the southeast (upwind). The Kriging interpolation method was adopted to create a contour map, which intuitively displayed a spatial mercury distribution in the soil. The regions with a higher Hg concentration are mainly distributed in the north northwest, the north northeast and the west southwest of the municipal solid waste incinerator. According to the evaluation results of single factor pollution index and geoaccumulation Index, some ambient soil samples were polluted by the mercury emission from the municipal solid waste incinerator; however, the results of the health risk assessment showed that the mercury in the soil had not pose a health hazard to the local population. PMID:24946613

  8. Impact of gold mining associated with mercury contamination in soil, biota sediments and tailings in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Odumo, Benjamin Okang'; Carbonell, Gregoria; Angeyo, Hudson Kalambuka; Patel, Jayanti Purshottam; Torrijos, Manuel; Rodríguez Martín, José Antonio

    2014-11-01

    This work considered the environmental impact of artisanal mining gold activity in the Migori-Transmara area (Kenya). From artisanal gold mining, mercury is released to the environment, thus contributing to degradation of soil and water bodies. High mercury contents have been quantified in soil (140 μg kg(-1)), sediment (430 μg kg(-1)) and tailings (8,900 μg kg(-1)), as expected. The results reveal that the mechanism for transporting mercury to the terrestrial ecosystem is associated with wet and dry depositions. Lichens and mosses, used as bioindicators of pollution, are related to the proximity to mining areas. The further the distance from mining areas, the lower the mercury levels. This study also provides risk maps to evaluate potential negative repercussions. We conclude that the Migori-Transmara region can be considered a strongly polluted area with high mercury contents. The technology used to extract gold throughout amalgamation processes causes a high degree of mercury pollution around this gold mining area. Thus, alternative gold extraction methods should be considered to reduce mercury levels that can be released to the environment. PMID:24943890

  9. Mercury distribution in tropical soil profiles related to origin of mercury and soil processes.

    PubMed

    Grimaldi, Catherine; Grimaldi, Michel; Guedron, Stephane

    2008-08-15

    The aim of the study is to improve our understanding of the vertical and lateral variations in the mercury content [Hg] of tropical soils. In addition to the distance to anthropogenic sources of Hg, the most frequently evoked determining factor is the abundance of Hg-bearing phases. Soil processes (weathering, mass or water transfer) determine the abundance of carrier phases. We assume that soil processes also have a direct impact on the distribution of Hg and that the impact is different according to the lithogenic or atmospheric origin of this element. We compare two types of soil (oxisol and ultisol) in the French Guiana forest, at localities a few tens of metres apart and exhibiting very different Hg contents. We show that vertical profiles of [Hg] are strongly related to the variations of [Hg(atmospheric)], whereas [Hg(lithogenic)] varies little. The penetration of Hg(atmospheric) from the surface deposits is favoured down to a depth of 3 m in the oxisol and limited to the upper horizons of the ultisol because of contrasted hydraulic conductivity between the two soils. Hg is primarily of lithogenic origin in the alteritic horizons of the ultisol. The relative accumulation of Hg(lithogenic) during the progressive weathering of parental material is limited near the soil surface by the disequilibrium of secondary minerals. Remobilization of Hg(atmospheric) or Hg(lithogenic) stored in the soil is a function of the chemical or particulate erosion of Hg-bearing phases, particularly active in the upper horizons of the ultisol, where lateral flow occurs during rain events. The correlations observed between the iron or clay contents and [Hg] can be caused by the affinity of Hg for these carrier phases, but may also reflect the weathering and the transfer processes which affect together the fate of Hg and the mineralogical and chemical composition of the soil. PMID:18495215

  10. Vapor phase elemental sulfur amendment for sequestering mercury in contaminated soil

    DOEpatents

    Looney, Brian B.; Denham, Miles E.; Jackson, Dennis G.

    2014-07-08

    The process of treating elemental mercury within the soil is provided by introducing into the soil a heated vapor phase of elemental sulfur. As the vapor phase of elemental sulfur cools, sulfur is precipitated within the soil and then reacts with any elemental mercury thereby producing a reaction product that is less hazardous than elemental mercury.

  11. Natural mercury isotope variation in coal deposits and organic soils

    SciTech Connect

    Abir, Biswas; Joel D. Blum; Bridget A. Bergquist; Gerald J. Keeler; Zhouqing Xie

    2008-11-15

    There is a need to distinguish among sources of Hg to the atmosphere in order to more fully understand global Hg pollution. In this study we investigate whether coal deposits within the United States, China, and Russia-Kazakhstan, which are three of the five greatest coal-producing regions, have diagnostic Hg isotopic fingerprints that can be used to discriminate among Hg sources. We also investigate the Hg isotopic composition of modern organic soil horizons developed in areas distant from point sources of Hg in North America. Mercury stored in coal deposits displays a wide range of both mass dependent fractionation and mass independent fractionation. {delta}{sup 202}Hg varies in coals by 3{per_thousand} and {Delta}{sup 201}Hg varies by 0.9{per_thousand}. Combining these two Hg isotope signals results in what may be a unique isotopic 'fingerprint' for many coal deposits. Mass independent fractionation of mercury has been demonstrated to occur during photochemical reactions of mercury. This suggests that Hg found in most coal deposits was subjected to photochemical reduction near the Earth's surface prior to deposition. The similarity in MDF and MIF of modern organic soils and coals from North America suggests that Hg deposition from coal may have imprinted an isotopic signature on soils. This research offers a new tool for characterizing mercury inputs from natural and anthropogenic sources to the atmosphere and provides new insights into the geochemistry of mercury in coal and soils. 35 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  12. Estimations of historical atmospheric mercury concentrations from mercury refining and present-day soil concentrations of total mercury in Huancavelica, Peru.

    PubMed

    Robins, Nicholas A; Hagan, Nicole; Halabi, Susan; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Gonzales, Ruben Dario Espinoza; Morris, Mark; Woodall, George; Richter, Daniel deB; Heine, Paul; Zhang, Tong; Bacon, Allan; Vandenberg, John

    2012-06-01

    Detailed Spanish records of cinnabar mining and mercury production during the colonial period in Huancavelica, Peru were examined to estimate historical health risks to the community from exposure to elemental mercury (Hg) vapor resulting from cinnabar refining operations. Between 1564 and 1810, nearly 17,000 metric tons of Hg were released to the atmosphere in Huancavelica from Hg production. AERMOD was used with estimated emissions and source characteristics to approximate historic atmospheric concentrations of mercury vapor. Modeled 1-hour and long-term concentrations were compared with present-day inhalation reference values for elemental Hg. Estimated 1-hour maximum concentrations for the entire community exceeded present-day occupational inhalation reference values, while some areas closest to the smelters exceeded present-day emergency response guideline levels. Estimated long-term maximum concentrations for the entire community exceeded the EPA Reference Concentration (RfC) by a factor of 30 to 100, with areas closest to the smelters exceeding the RfC by a factor of 300 to 1000. Based on the estimated historical concentrations of Hg vapor in the community, the study also measured the extent of present-day contamination throughout the community through soil sampling and analysis. Total Hg in soils sampled from 20 locations ranged from 1.75 to 698 mg/kg and three adobe brick samples ranging from 47.4 to 284 mg/kg, consistent with other sites of mercury mining and use. The results of the soil sampling indicate that the present-day population of Huancavelica is exposed to levels of mercury from legacy contamination which is currently among the highest worldwide, consequently placing them at potential risk of adverse health outcomes. PMID:22542225

  13. Mercury in waters, soils, and sediments of the New Jersey Coastal Plain: A comparison of regional distribution and mobility with the mercury contamination at the William J. Hughes Technical Center, Atlantic County, New Jersey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barringer, Julia L.; Szabo, Zoltan; Reilly, Pamela A.

    2012-01-01

    Mercury in soils, surface water, and groundwater at the William J. Hughes Technical Center , Atlantic County, New Jersey, has been found at levels that exceed established background concentrations in Coastal Plain waters, and, in some cases, New Jersey State standards for mercury in various media. As of 2012, it is not known whether this mercury is part of regional mercury contamination or whether it is related to former military activities. Regionally, groundwater supplying about 700 domestic wells in the New Jersey Coastal Plain is contaminated with mercury that appears to be derived from anthropogenic inputs, such as agricultural pesticide use and atmospheric deposition. High levels of mercury occasionally are found in Coastal Plain soils, but disturbance during residential development on former agricultural land is thought to have mobilized any mercury applied during farming, a hypothesis borne out by experiments leaching mercury from soils. In the unsewered residential areas with mercury-contaminated groundwater, septic-system effluent is believed to create reducing conditions in which mercury sorbed to subsoils is mobilized to groundwater. In comparing the levels of mercury found in soils, sediments, streamwater, and groundwater at the William J. Hughes Technical Center site with those found regionally, mercury concentrations in groundwater in the region are, in some cases, substantially higher than those found in groundwater at the William J. Hughes Technical Center site. Nevertheless, concentrations of mercury in streamwater at the site are, in some instances, higher than most found regionally. The mercury contents in soils and sediment at the William J. Hughes Technical Center site are substantially higher than those found to date (2012) in the region, indicating that a source other than regional sources may be present at the site.

  14. Application of ferric sludge to immobilize leachable mercury in soils and concrete.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, J Ming; Walsh, T; Lam, T; Boulter, D

    2003-11-01

    A Hg-contaminated site in B.C. Province, Canada was caused by the previous operation of Hg-cell in chlor-alkali process for over 25 years. The soils and groundwater at the site are highly contaminated with mercury. An analysis of groundwater at the site has shown that most of the mercury is bonded with humic and fulvic acids (HFA) in colloidal form. The Hg-HFA colloids can be completely removed from the groundwater with ferric chloride treatment under optimized process conditions to form ferric sludge (FS), which is rendered non-leachable by standard TCLP (Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure) test. The effluent discharged from a clarifier has achieved mercury levels of < 0.5 microkg l(-1). The studies of mercury adsorption characteristics of FS show it has low mercury leachability by TCLP, and great mercury adsorption capability. This feature is the basis for the application of FS to immobilization of leachable Hg-contaminants in solid wastes. Full-scale stabilization tests of Hg-contaminated soil have been carried out, and the time-based stability of the treated soil has been monitored by TCLP over a period of 60 days. All the results have shown a small variation in TCLP mercury levels within a range of 10-40 microg l(-1). Based on these results and with the approval of the B.C. Ministry of the Environment, 1850 tons of Hg-contaminated soils and 260 tons of Hg-contaminated concrete fines have been treated, stabilized with FS, and disposed in a non-hazardous waste disposal site. PMID:14733397

  15. Effects of metal-soil contact time on the extraction of mercury from soils.

    PubMed

    Ma, Lan; Zhong, Huan; Wu, Yong-Gui

    2015-03-01

    To investigate the mercury aging process in soils, soil samples were spiked with inorganic mercury (Hg(II)) or methylated mercury (MeHg) and incubated for 2, 7, 14 or 28 days in the laboratory. Potential availability of mercury, assessed by bovine serum albumin (BSA) or calcium chloride (CaCl2) extraction, decreased by 2-19 times for Hg(II) or 2-6 times for MeHg, when the contact time increased from 2 to 28 days. Decreased Hg(II) extraction could be explained by Hg(II) geochemical fractionation, i.e., Hg(II) migrated from more mobile fractions (water soluble and stomach acid soluble fractions) to refractory ones (organo-complexed, strongly complexed and residual fractions) over time, resulting in more stable association of Hg(II) with soils. In addition, decrease of mercury extraction was more evident in soils with lower organic content in most treatments, suggesting that organic matter may potentially play an important role in mercury aging process. In view of the significant decreased Hg(II) or MeHg extraction with prolonged contact time, mercury aging process should be taken into account when assessing risk of mercury in contaminated soils. PMID:25613855

  16. Mercury exposure in French Guiana: Levels and determinants

    SciTech Connect

    Cordier, S.; Mandereau, L.; Grasmick, C.; Paquier-Passelaigue, M.; Weber, J.P.; Jouan, M.

    1998-07-01

    Mercury is used widely for gold extraction in French Guiana and throughout the entire Amazon basin. To evaluate contamination among the general population, the authors chose individuals who attended 13 health centers and maternity hospitals dispersed geographically across the territory and served Guiana`s different populations. Five hundred individuals (109 pregnant women, 255 other adults, and 136 children) who received care at one of the centers were selected randomly for this study. Each individual answered a questionnaire and provided a hair sample. The authors determined mercury in hair with atomic absorption spectrometry. The following mean levels of mercury were observed: 1.6 {micro}g/g among pregnant women; 3.4 {micro}g/g among other adults; and 2.5 {micro}g/g among children. Diet factors contributed the most to mercury levels, especially consumption of freshwater fish and livers from game. Other factors, including age, dental amalgams, use of skin-lightening cosmetics, and residence near a gold-mining community, did not contribute significantly to mercury levels. Overall, 12% of the samples contained mercury levels in excess of 10 {micro}g/g, but in some Amerindian communities up to 79% of the children had hair mercury levels that exceeded 10 {micro}g/g. The results of this study indicated that (a) diet played a predominant role in total mercury burden, and (b) in some communities, mercury contamination exceeded safe levels.

  17. Atmospheric deposition of mercury in Atlantic Forest and ecological risk to soil fauna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cristhy Buch, Andressa; Cabral Teixeira, Daniel; Fernandes Correia, Maria Elizabeth; Vieira Silva-Filho, Emmanoel

    2014-05-01

    The increasing levels of mercury (Hg) found in the atmosphere nowadays has a great contribution from anthropogenic sources and has been a great concern in the past two decades in industrialized countries. Brazil is the seventh country with the highest rate of mercury in the atmosphere. Certainly, the petroleum refineries have significant contribution, seen that 100 million m3 of crude oil are annually processed. These refineries contribute with low generation of solid waste; however, a large fraction of Hg can be emitted to the atmosphere. There are sixteen refineries in Brazil, three of them located in the state of Rio de Janeiro. The Hg is a toxic and hazardous trace element, naturally found in the earth crust. The major input of Hg to ecosystems is through atmospheric deposition (wet and dry), being transported in the atmosphere over large distances. The forest biomes are of great importance in the atmosphere/soil cycling of elemental Hg through foliar uptake and subsequent transfer to the soil through litterfall, which play an important role as Hg sink. The Atlantic Forest of Brazil is the greater contributor of fauna and flora biodiversity in the world and, according to recent studies, this biome has the highest concentrations of mercury in litter in the world, as well as in China, at Subtropical Forest. Ecotoxicological assessments can predict the potential ecological risk of Hg toxicity in the soil can lead to impact the soil fauna and indirectly other trophic levels of the food chain within one or more ecosystems. This study aims to determine mercury levels that represent risks to diversity and functioning of soil fauna in tropical forest soils. The study is conducted in two forest areas inserted into conservation units of Rio de Janeiro state. One area is located next to an important petroleum refinery in activity since fifty-two years ago, whereas the other one is located next to other refinery under construction (beginning activities in 2015), which will

  18. Impact of Wildfire on Levels of Mercury in Forested Watershed Systems - Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Woodruff, Laurel G.; Sandheinrich, Mark B.; Brigham, Mark E.; Cannon, William F.

    2009-01-01

    Atmospheric deposition of mercury to remote lakes in mid-continental and eastern North America has increased approximately threefold since the mid-1800s (Swain and others, 1992; Fitzgerald and others, 1998; Engstrom and others, 2007). As a result, concerns for human and wildlife health related to mercury contamination have become widespread. Despite an apparent recent decline in atmospheric deposition of mercury in many areas of the Upper Midwest (Engstrom and Swain, 1997; Engstrom and others, 2007), lakes in which fish contain levels of mercury deemed unacceptable for human consumption and possibly unacceptable for fish-consuming wildlife are being detected with increasing frequency. In northern Minnesota, Voyageurs National Park (VNP) (fig. 1) protects a series of southern boreal lakes and wetlands situated on bedrock of the Precambrian Canadian Shield. Mercury contamination has become a significant resource issue within VNP as high concentrations of mercury in loons, bald eagle eaglets, grebes, northern pike, and other species of wildlife and fish have been found. The two most mercury-contaminated lakes in Minnesota, measured as methylmercury in northern pike (Esox lucius), are in VNP. Recent multidisciplinary U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) research demonstrated that the bulk of the mercury in lake waters, soils, and fish in VNP results from atmospheric deposition (Wiener and others, 2006). The study by Wiener and others (2006) showed that the spatial distribution of mercury in watershed soils, lake waters, and age-1 yellow perch (Perca flavescens) within the Park was highly variable. The majority of factors correlated for this earlier study suggested that mercury concentrations in lake waters and age-1 yellow perch reflected the influence of ecosystem processes that affected within-lake microbial production and abundance of methylmercury (Wiener and others, 2006), while the distribution of mercury in watershed soils seemed to be partially dependent on forest

  19. Chronic atrophic gastritis in association with hair mercury level.

    PubMed

    Xue, Zeyun; Xue, Huiping; Jiang, Jianlan; Lin, Bing; Zeng, Si; Huang, Xiaoyun; An, Jianfu

    2014-11-01

    The objective of this study was to explore hair mercury level in association with chronic atrophic gastritis, a precancerous stage of gastric cancer (GC), and thus provide a brand new angle of view on the timely intervention of precancerous stage of GC. We recruited 149 healthy volunteers as controls and 152 patients suffering from chronic gastritis as cases. The controls denied upper gastrointestinal discomforts, and the cases were diagnosed as chronic superficial gastritis (n=68) or chronic atrophic gastritis (n=84). We utilized Mercury Automated Analyzer (NIC MA-3000) to detect hair mercury level of both healthy controls and cases of chronic gastritis. The statistic of measurement data was expressed as mean ± standard deviation, which was analyzed using Levene variance equality test and t test. Pearson correlation analysis was employed to determine associated factors affecting hair mercury levels, and multiple stepwise regression analysis was performed to deduce regression equations. Statistical significance is considered if p value is less than 0.05. The overall hair mercury level was 0.908949 ± 0.8844490 ng/g [mean ± standard deviation (SD)] in gastritis cases and 0.460198 ± 0.2712187 ng/g (mean±SD) in healthy controls; the former level was significantly higher than the latter one (p=0.000<0.01). The hair mercury level in chronic atrophic gastritis subgroup was 1.155220 ± 0.9470246 ng/g (mean ± SD) and that in chronic superficial gastritis subgroup was 0.604732 ± 0.6942509 ng/g (mean ± SD); the former level was significantly higher than the latter level (p<0.01). The hair mercury level in chronic superficial gastritis cases was significantly higher than that in healthy controls (p<0.05). The hair mercury level in chronic atrophic gastritis cases was significantly higher than that in healthy controls (p<0.01). Stratified analysis indicated that the hair mercury level in healthy controls with eating seafood was significantly higher than that in healthy

  20. Remediation of Mercury Contaminated Soils at the Miramas Site - 12243

    SciTech Connect

    Potier, G.; Chambon, F.

    2012-07-01

    Beneficial 'new' use of the Miramas Site is the remediation objective for a former light isotope manufacturing facility. Remediation operations will remove contaminated soils and materials and deconstruct facilities. The remediation objective is faced with project challenges and regulatory requirements that dictate/influence the outcome. The operation consists of the remediation of approximately 100,000 cubic meters of soil and the decommissioning of facilities. The types and ranges of waste are the result of historical processing activities (chemical facilities, pyrotechnic components storage, mining component treatment and light isotope manufacturing activities). Mercury is the primary component of the waste, but metals and organic compounds are also possible waste components. A thermal desorption process is used to remove Mercury from the polluted soil while a biological treatment is considered to the organic nitrate compound removal. A focus is done on the technologies used to remediate the Mercury contaminated soil. After few months of operation, the first results confirm that the technology choices were relevant and the soil remediation project is a success. The first successful month of operation at an industrial scale demonstrate that the Thermal Desorption is an efficient and relevant process to remediate large quantity of mercury contaminated soils. The project is on cost and the mercury removal should be end by 2014. The scrubbing is a good way to limit the volume of material to be treated with the Thermal Desorption Unit. The biological treatment is a promising process for the organic nitrate compound removal and testing at a pilot scale will be done in 2012. (authors)

  1. Total mercury, methyl mercury, and carbon in fresh and burned plants and soil in Northwestern Ontario.

    PubMed

    Mailman, M; Bodaly, R A

    2005-11-01

    Terrestrial plants and soil contain substantial amounts of organic carbon (C) and mercury. Flooding terrestrial areas stimulates microbial methyl mercury (MeHg) production and fish obtain elevated MeHg concentrations. Our purpose was to determine the loss of C, total mercury (THg), and MeHg from boreal plants and soil after burning to assess the potential of burning before flooding to lower MeHg. Fresh plants contained 4 to 52 ng g(-1) dry weight (dw) of THg and 0.1 to 1.3 ng g(-1) dw of MeHg. Upland soils contained 162+/-132 ng g(-1) dw of THg and 0.6+/-0.6 ng g(-1) dw of MeHg. Complete burning caused plants to lose 96, 98, 97, and 94% of the mass, C, THg, and MeHg, respectively. Upland soil lost 27, 95, 79, and 82% of the mass, C, THg, and MeHg, respectively. Our results demonstrated that a substantial loss of C, THg, and MeHg was caused by burning. PMID:15936862

  2. Phyto extraction and accumulation of mercury in selected plant species grown in soil contaminated with different mercury compounds

    SciTech Connect

    Su, Y.; Han, F.; Shiyab, S.; Monts, D.L.

    2007-07-01

    The objective of our research is to screen and search for suitable plant species for phyto-remediation of mercury-contaminated soil. Currently our effort is specifically focused on mercury removal from the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Oak Ridge Site, where mercury contamination is a major concern in the Y-12 Watershed area. In order to cost effectively implement those remediation efforts currently planned for FY09, it is necessary now to obtain an improved understanding of biological means of removing mercury and mercury compounds from the Oak Ridge ecosystem. Phyto-remediation is a technology that uses various plants to degrade, extract, contain, or immobilize contaminants from soil and water. In particular, phyto-extraction is the uptake of contaminants by plant roots and translocation within the plants to shoots or leaves. Contaminants are generally removed by harvesting the plants. We have investigated phyto-extraction of mercury from contaminated soil by using some of the known metal accumulating wild plants since no natural plant species with mercury hyper-accumulating properties has yet been identified. Different natural plant species have been studied for mercury uptake, accumulation, toxicity and overall mercury removal efficiency. Various mercury compounds, such as HgS, HgCl{sub 2} and Hg(NO{sub 3}){sub 2}, were used as contaminant sources. Different types of soil were examined and chosen for phyto-remediation experiments. We have applied microscopy and diffuse reflectance spectrometry as well as conventional analytical chemistry to monitor the phyto-remediation processes of mercury uptake, translocation and accumulation; and the physiological impact of mercury contaminants on selected plant species. Our results indicate that certain plant species, such as beard grass (Polypogon monospeliensis), accumulated a very limited amount of mercury in the shoots (<65 mg/kg), even though root mercury accumulation is significant (maximum 2298 mg

  3. Distribution and fractionation of mercury in the soils of a unique tropical agricultural wetland ecosystem, southwest coast of India.

    PubMed

    Navya, C; Gopikrishna, V G; Arunbabu, V; Mohan, Mahesh

    2015-12-01

    Mercury biogeochemistry is highly complex in the aquatic ecosystems and it is very difficult to predict. The speciation of mercury is the primary factor controlling its behavior, movement, and fate in these systems. The fluctuating water levels in wetlands could play a major role in the mercury transformations and transport. Hence, the agricultural wetlands may have a significant influence on the global mercury cycling. Kuttanad agricultural wetland ecosystem is a unique one as it is lying below the sea level and most of the time it is inundated with water. To understand the mobility and bioavailability of Hg in the soils of this agricultural wetland ecosystem, the present study analyzed the total mercury content as well as the different fractions of mercury. Mercury was detected using cold vapor atomic fluorescence spectrophotometer. The total mercury content varied from 0.002 to 0.683 mg/kg, and most of the samples are having concentrations below the background value. The percentage of mercury found in the initial three fractions F1, F2, and F3 are more available and it may enhance the methylation potential of the Kuttanad agroecosystem. PMID:26566642

  4. Mercury isotope compositions in North American forest soils and litters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, W.; Obrist, D.; Bergquist, B. A.

    2013-12-01

    Soils represent one of the largest reservoirs of mercury on Earth, playing a critical role in the natural cycle of mercury by acting as both a sink and source. However, it is not well understood how soils sequestrate and remobilize Hg. Natural variations in stable Hg isotopes are being explored as a promising tool in studying the transformation and transport of Hg. However, Hg isotopic data in soils is scarce. In addition, the limited isotopic data that exists is significantly different from those of atmospheric Hg, which is one of the major sources of Hg to soils. For example, Hg mass independent fractionation (MIF, typically reported as Δ199Hg) is positive in atmospheric wet deposition, but most soils display negative Δ199Hg. MIF on 200Hg (Δ200Hg) is also observed in atmospheric wet deposition, but not in soils. The discrepancy between soils and atmospheric samples is still unexplained. In this study, we surveyed the Hg isotope compositions in soil profiles, litters and fresh vegetation from four different forest sites across United States (Thompson forest, WA, Truckee, CA, Niwot Ridge, CO and Howland, MA). The current results from the WA site show that soils primarily display negative mass dependent fractionation for the even isotopes (MDF, reported as δ202Hg) with values for δ202Hg of up to -2.0‰. Significant MIF for both odd isotopes is also observed in all WA soil samples and Δ199Hg is mostly negative (up to -0.4‰). No MIF on 200Hg is observed in these soils. The negative Δ199Hg in soils is inconsistent with the positive Δ199Hg reported in atmospheric wet deposition, suggesting that either Hg transformations within or on the surface of soils and/or plants alter its isotope composition after deposition or other types of Hg deposition (e.g., Hg(0) or Hg(II) dry deposition) is more predominant. The Δ199Hg/Δ201Hg ratio is close to 1 in the soils, which is consistent with the results of laboratory photochemical reduction of inorganic Hg

  5. Mercury contamination in agricultural soils from abandoned metal mines classified by geology and mineralization.

    PubMed

    Kim, Han Sik; Jung, Myung Chae

    2012-01-01

    This survey aimed to compare mercury concentrations in soils related to geology and mineralization types of mines. A total of 16,386 surface soils (0~15 cm in depth) were taken from agricultural lands near 343 abandoned mines (within 2 km from each mine) and analyzed for Hg by AAS with a hydride-generation device. To meaningfully compare mercury levels in soils with geology and mineralization types, three subclassification criteria were adapted: (1) five mineralization types, (2) four valuable ore mineral types, and (3) four parent rock types. The average concentration of Hg in all soils was 0.204 mg kg(-1) with a range of 0.002-24.07 mg kg(-1). Based on the mineralization types, average Hg concentrations (mg kg(-1)) in the soils decreased in the order of pegmatite (0.250) > hydrothermal vein (0.208) > hydrothermal replacement (0.166) > skarn (0.121) > sedimentary deposits (0.045). In terms of the valuable ore mineral types, the concentrations decreased in the order of Au-Ag-base metal mines ≈ base metal mines > Au-Ag mines > Sn-W-Mo-Fe-Mn mines. For parent rock types, similar concentrations were found in the soils derived from sedimentary rocks and metamorphic rocks followed by heterogeneous rocks with igneous and metamorphic processes. Furthermore, farmland soils contained relatively higher Hg levels than paddy soils. Therefore, it can be concluded that soils in Au, Ag, and base metal mines derived from a hydrothermal vein type of metamorphic rocks and pegmatite deposits contained relatively higher concentrations of mercury in the surface environment. PMID:21814815

  6. Environmental Emission of Mercury During Gold Mining by Amalgamation Process and its Impact on Soils of Gympie, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhindsa, H. S.; Battle, A. R.; Prytz, S.

    - The aims of this study were to estimate the total amount of mercury released to the environment during 60 years of gold mining (1867-1926) at Gympie, Queensland, Australia and to measure the mercury levels in soil samples surrounding the mining activity. We estimated that 1902 tonnes of mercury was released to the environment and about 1236 tonnes of which was released to the air. The mean mercury in the soil samples in the vicinity of the Scottish battery varied from 1.07 to 99.26 μg g-1 as compared to 0.075 μg g-1 as background mercury concentrations. The maximum mercury concentration measured in sediments of the Langton Gully was 6.12 μg g-1. These results show that large amount of mercury was used in this area during gold mining. Since mining is active in the area and Langton Gully flows into Mary River, we therefore, recommend that mercury concentration in air and fish should be monitored.

  7. Mercury Reduction and Methyl Mercury Degradation by the Soil Bacterium Xanthobacter autotrophicus Py2

    PubMed Central

    Petrus, Amanda K.; Rutner, Colin; Liu, Songnian; Wang, Yingjiao

    2015-01-01

    Two previously uncharacterized potential broad-spectrum mercury (Hg) resistance operons (mer) are present on the chromosome of the soil Alphaproteobacteria Xanthobacter autotrophicus Py2. These operons, mer1 and mer2, contain two features which are commonly found in mer operons in the genomes of soil and marine Alphaproteobacteria, but are not present in previously characterized mer operons: a gene for the mercuric reductase (MerA) that encodes an alkylmercury lyase domain typical of those found on the MerB protein, and the presence of an additional gene, which we are calling merK, with homology to glutathione reductase. Here, we demonstrate that Py2 is resistant to 0.2 μM inorganic mercury [Hg(II)] and 0.05 μM methylmercury (MeHg). Py2 is capable of converting MeHg and Hg(II) to elemental mercury [Hg(0)], and reduction of Hg(II) is induced by incubation in sub toxic concentrations of Hg(II). Transcription of the merA genes increased with Hg(II) treatment, and in both operons merK resides on the same polycistronic mRNA as merA. We propose the use of Py2 as a model system for studying the contribution of mer to Hg mobility in soil and marine ecosystems. PMID:26341208

  8. The mercury levels in crustaceans and cephalopods from Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Ahmad, Nurul Izzah; Noh, Mohd Fairulnizal Mohd; Mahiyuddin, Wan Rozita Wan; Jaafar, Hamdan; Ishak, Ismail; Azmi, Wan Nurul Farah Wan; Veloo, Yuvaneswary; Mokhtar, Fazlin Anis

    2015-09-01

    This study is to determine total mercury in edible tissues of eight species of cephalopods and 12 species of crustaceans purchased from 11 identified major fish landing ports and wet markets throughout Peninsular Malaysia. The concentration of mercury was measured by cold vapor atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS) technique using the Perkin Elmer Flow Injection Mercury System (FIMS-400). In general, the mercury levels were low with concentrations in cephalopods ranging from 0.099 to 2.715 mg/kg dry weight (or 0.0184-0.505 mg/kg wet weight) and in crustaceans ranging from 0.057 to 1.359 mg/kg dry weight (or 0.0111-0.265 mg/kg wet weight). The mercury levels showed no significant differences (P > 0.05) between species for both cephalopods and crustaceans. There was no significant correlation between mercury concentrations and the body size of individual for both groups as well. Comparisons with mercury levels obtained found from other previous studies and/or species noted that they were of the same magnitude or relatively low compared to various locations reported worldwide. PMID:25916470

  9. Sources and remediation techniques for mercury contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jingying; Bravo, Andrea Garcia; Lagerkvist, Anders; Bertilsson, Stefan; Sjöblom, Rolf; Kumpiene, Jurate

    2015-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) in soils has increased by a factor of 3 to 10 in recent times mainly due to combustion of fossil fuels combined with long-range atmospheric transport processes. Other sources as chlor-alkali plants, gold mining and cement production can also be significant, at least locally. This paper summarizes the natural and anthropogenic sources that have contributed to the increase of Hg concentration in soil and reviews major remediation techniques and their applications to control soil Hg contamination. The focus is on soil washing, stabilisation/solidification, thermal treatment and biological techniques; but also the factors that influence Hg mobilisation in soil and therefore are crucial for evaluating and optimizing remediation techniques are discussed. Further research on bioremediation is encouraged and future study should focus on the implementation of different remediation techniques under field conditions. PMID:25454219

  10. Mercury poisoning dentistry: high-level indoor air mercury contamination at selected dental sites.

    PubMed

    Khwaja, Mahmood A; Abbasi, Maryam Shabbir

    2014-01-01

    Mercury (Hg), also known as quick silver, is an essential constituent of dental amalgam. It is a toxic substance of global concern. Children are more at risk from mercury poisoning which affects their neurological development and brain. In the past, a number of studies at dental sites in many countries have been carried out and reported. The present report briefly describes and discusses our recent investigations carried out at 34 dental sites (teaching institutions, hospitals and private clinics) in Pakistan. It is evident from the data that at many sites the indoor mercury vapor levels exceed far above the permissible limit recommended for safe physical and mental health. At these sites, public in general and the medical, paramedical staff and vulnerable population in particular, are at most serious risk to health resulting from exposure to toxic and hazardous mercury. To minimize such risk, some of the recommendations are, best in-house environmental practices for occupational health and safety, mercury contaminated waste reduction at source, mercury specific legislation and ratification of Minamata convention on mercury by Pakistan and other world governments at the earliest time possible. PMID:24552960

  11. Mercury Exposure Levels in Children with Dental Amalgam Fillings

    PubMed Central

    Miriam Varkey, Indu; Shetty, Rajmohan; Hegde, Amitha

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT% Objectives: Mercury combined with other metals to form solid amalgams has long been used in reconstructive dentistry but its use has been controversial since at least the middle of the 19th century. The exposure and body burden of mercury reviews have consistently stated that there is a deficiency of adequate epidemiological studies addressing this issue. Fish and dental amalgam are two major sources of human exposure to organic (MeHg) and inorganic Hg respectively. Materials and methods: A total of 150 subjects aged between 9 and 14 years were divided into two groups of 75 subjects each depending on their diet, i.e. seafood or nonseafood consuming. Each category was subdivided into three groups based on number of restorations. Scalp hair and urine samples were collected at baseline and 3 months later to assess the organic and inorganic levels of mercury respectively by atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS). Results: The mean values of urinary mercury (inorganic mercury) in the group of children with restorations were 1.5915 μg/l as compared to 0.0130 μg/l in the groups with no amalgam restorations (p < 0.001) (Wilcoxon sign rank test and paired t-test). The hair mercury levels (organic mercury) varied signi-ficantly between the fsh-eating group and nonfsh-eating group, the average values being 1.03 μg/l and 0.84 μg/l respectively (p < 0.001) (Mann-Whitney U-test and paired t-test). Conclusion and significance: The notion about the mercury being released from the amalgam restorations as a sole exposure source needs to be put to a rest, as environmental factors collectively overpower the exposure levels from restorations alone. How to cite this article: Varkey IM, Shetty R, Hegde A. Mercury Exposure Levels in Children with Dental Amalgam Fillings. Int J Clin Pediatr Dent 2014;7(3):180-185. PMID:25709298

  12. Hair mercury levels in Amazonian populations: spatial distribution and trends

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Mercury is present in the Amazonian aquatic environments from both natural and anthropogenic sources. As a consequence, many riverside populations are exposed to methylmercury, a highly toxic organic form of mercury, because of their intense fish consumption. Many studies have analysed this exposure from different approaches since the early nineties. This review aims to systematize the information in spatial distribution, comparing hair mercury levels by studied population and Amazonian river basin, looking for exposure trends. Methods The reviewed papers were selected from scientific databases and online libraries. We included studies with a direct measure of hair mercury concentrations in a sample size larger than 10 people, without considering the objectives, approach of the study or mercury speciation. The results are presented in tables and maps by river basin, displaying hair mercury levels and specifying the studied population and health impact, if any. Results The majority of the studies have been carried out in communities from the central Amazonian regions, particularly on the Tapajós River basin. The results seem quite variable; hair mercury means range from 1.1 to 34.2 μg/g. Most studies did not show any significant difference in hair mercury levels by gender or age. Overall, authors emphasized fish consumption frequency as the main risk factor of exposure. The most studied adverse health effect is by far the neurological performance, especially motricity. However, it is not possible to conclude on the relation between hair mercury levels and health impact in the Amazonian situation because of the relatively small number of studies. Conclusions Hair mercury levels in the Amazonian regions seem to be very heterogenic, depending on several factors. There is no obvious spatial trend and there are many areas that have never been studied. Taking into account the low mercury levels currently handled as acceptable, the majority of the Amazonian

  13. Elevated CO2 Effects on Mercury Content of Forest Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natali, S. M.; Lerdau, M.; Sañudo-Wilhelmy, S. A.

    2006-12-01

    Fossil fuel combustion is the primary anthropogenic source of both CO2 and mercury (Hg) to the atmosphere. Terrestrial vegetation can act as a conduit for transferring atmospheric Hg into soils and freshwater systems. While the effects of CO2 on both terrestrial plants and soils have been well-studied, the impacts of these CO2 induced changes on Hg cycling are unknown. We found that elevated CO2 resulted in increased Hg concentration in forest soils. Soil Hg concentration in the top 20cm of soils was 26% greater and total Hg content was 22% greater under elevated CO2 (ambient + 200ppmv), relative to ambient at two FACE sites: Duke Forest, NC and Oak Ridge, TN. However, there was no significant CO2 effect on Hg inputs via leaf litter. Soil Hg was significantly correlated with soil organic matter and acidity, suggesting that CO2 mediated changes in soil properties may be affecting soil Hg content. Elevated atmospheric CO2 has the potential to increase the Hg trapping efficiency of soils, with still unknown effects on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem function.

  14. Changes in Mercury Volatilization between Planted and Unplanted Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briggs, C.; Gustin, M. S.

    2010-12-01

    An important question with respect to the Hg biogeochemical cycle is how does the presence of plants affect the flux of Hg from a soil? Previous research has shown that with leaf development over a growing season and increased soil shading Hg emission decreases, while others have suggested that increased activity of rhizosphere bacteria due to the presence of plants would result in the increased Hg emission from soils. This study examined Hg release to the air associated with low Hg containing soils from three states—Indiana, Alabama, and Ohio over 24 h periods. Hg flux was quantified on a seasonal time step over one year for bare soil and for soil when planted with perennial rye grass (Lolium perennel). For the latter fluxes were measured 5 and 10 weeks after planting. Preliminary data assessment suggests that both planted and unplanted substrates in the summer are generally a net source of Hg to the atmosphere with total daily flux ranging from -50 to 1000 ng/m2 day. Fluxes observed for planted soils exhibited diel trends that were the opposite of that measured for bare soils, that is maximum Hg flux was observed during the night instead of at midday. Planted Indiana and Ohio soils emitted a lower Hg flux than the bare soils while the Alabama soils were not consistent. Good correlations were observed between flux versus soil moisture, soil temperature, local ozone concentration, and solar radiation for bare soils however correlation coefficients were not as strong for the planted materials. Mercury concentration of foliar material showed that plant uptake could not account for reduced flux at midday. This work suggests that the presence of plants does alter the flux of Hg occurring from soils.

  15. A screening-level mercury deposition model for wetland ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Fink, L.E.

    1995-12-31

    A highly aggregated, three-compartment, carbon cycling model was constructed for a screening-level simulation of net carbon, phosphorus, and mercury deposition in the Everglades Nutrient Removal Project, a 3,742-acre constructed wetland in South Florida. The model was initialized using ENR or Everglades values for model variables. The model was calibrated to calculate biomass turnover, decomposition, and release rates that reproduced the observed apparent phosphorus settling rate constant and the observed organic and inorganic carbon and total phosphorus concentrations in surface sediments. The mercury deposition rate was calculated by partitioning water column mercuric ion onto settling organic and inorganic carbon particles using site-specific or literature values for partition coefficients. From the annual mass balance budget for total mercury calculated with site-specific or literature values, the phosphorus-calibrated model reproduced the observed total mercury concentrations in surface sediments from a typical Everglades marsh within screening-level tolerances.

  16. Mercury Exposure May Suppress Baseline Corticosterone Levels in Juvenile Birds.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Herring, Garth; Ackerman, Joshua T.; Herzog, Mark P.

    2012-01-01

    Mercury exposure has been associated with a wide variety of negative reproductive responses in birds, however few studies have examined the potential for chick impairment via the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. The HPA axis regulates corticosterone levels during periods of stress. We examined the relationship between baseline fecal corticosterone metabolite concentrations and mercury concentrations in down feathers of recently hatched (Sterna forsteri) chicks in San Francisco Bay, California. Baseline fecal corticosterone metabolite concentrations were negatively correlated with mercury concentrations in blood of older chicks (decreasing by 81% across the range of observed mercury concentrations) while accounting for positive correlations between corticosterone concentrations and number of fledgling chicks within the colony and chick age. In recently hatched chicks, baseline fecal corticosterone metabolite concentrations were weakly negatively correlated with mercury concentrations in down feathers (decreasing by 45% across the range of observed mercury concentrations) while accounting for stronger positive correlations between corticosterone concentrations and colony nest abundance and date. These results indicate that chronic mercury exposure may suppress baseline corticosterone concentrations in tern chicks and suggests that a juvenile bird's ability to respond to stress may be reduced via the downregulation of the HPA axis.

  17. Mercury exposure may suppress baseline corticosterone levels in juvenile birds.

    PubMed

    Herring, Garth; Ackerman, Joshua T; Herzog, Mark P

    2012-06-01

    Mercury exposure has been associated with a wide variety of negative reproductive responses in birds, however few studies have examined the potential for chick impairment via the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. The HPA axis regulates corticosterone levels during periods of stress. We examined the relationship between baseline fecal corticosterone metabolite concentrations and mercury concentrations in down feathers of recently hatched (<3 days) and blood of older (15-37 days) Forster's tern (Sterna forsteri) chicks in San Francisco Bay, California. Baseline fecal corticosterone metabolite concentrations were negatively correlated with mercury concentrations in blood of older chicks (decreasing by 81% across the range of observed mercury concentrations) while accounting for positive correlations between corticosterone concentrations and number of fledgling chicks within the colony and chick age. In recently hatched chicks, baseline fecal corticosterone metabolite concentrations were weakly negatively correlated with mercury concentrations in down feathers (decreasing by 45% across the range of observed mercury concentrations) while accounting for stronger positive correlations between corticosterone concentrations and colony nest abundance and date. These results indicate that chronic mercury exposure may suppress baseline corticosterone concentrations in tern chicks and suggests that a juvenile bird's ability to respond to stress may be reduced via the downregulation of the HPA axis. PMID:22578153

  18. Remediation aspect of microbial changes of plant rhizosphere in mercury contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Sas-Nowosielska, Aleksandra; Galimska-Stypa, Regina; Kucharski, Rafał; Zielonka, Urszula; Małkowski, Eugeniusz; Gray, Laymon

    2008-02-01

    Phytoremediation, an approach that uses plants to remediate contaminated soil through degradation, stabilization or accumulation, may provide an efficient solution to some mercury contamination problems. This paper presents growth chamber experiments that tested the ability of plant species to stabilize mercury in soil. Several indigenous herbaceous species and Salix viminalis were grown in soil collected from a mercury-contaminated site in southern Poland. The uptake and distribution of mercury by these plants were investigated, and the growth and vitality of the plants through a part of one vegetative cycle were assessed. The highest concentrations of mercury were found at the roots, but translocation to the aerial part also occurred. Most of the plant species tested displayed good growth on mercury contaminated soil and sustained a rich microbial population in the rhizosphere. The microbial populations of root-free soil and rhizosphere soil from all species were also examined. An inverse correlation between the number of sulfur amino acid decomposing bacteria and root mercury content was observed. These results indicate the potential for using some species of plants to treat mercury contaminated soil through stabilization rather than extraction. The present investigation proposes a practical cost-effective temporary solution for phytostabilization of soil with moderate mercury contamination as well as the basis for plant selection. PMID:17492484

  19. Potential bioremediation of mercury-contaminated substrate using filamentous fungi isolated from forest soil.

    PubMed

    Kurniati, Evi; Arfarita, Novi; Imai, Tsuyoshi; Higuchi, Takaya; Kanno, Ariyo; Yamamoto, Koichi; Sekine, Masahiko

    2014-06-01

    The use of filamentous fungi in bioremediation of heavy metal contamination has been developed recently. This research aims to observe the capability of filamentous fungi isolated from forest soil for bioremediation of mercury contamination in a substrate. Six fungal strains were selected based on their capability to grow in 25 mg/L Hg(2+)-contaminated potato dextrose agar plates. Fungal strain KRP1 showed the highest ratio of growth diameter, 0.831, thus was chosen for further observation. Identification based on colony and cell morphology carried out by 18S rRNA analysis gave a 98% match to Aspergillus flavus strain KRP1. The fungal characteristics in mercury(II) contamination such as range of optimum pH, optimum temperature and tolerance level were 5.5-7 and 25-35°C and 100 mg/L respectively. The concentration of mercury in the media affected fungal growth during lag phases. The capability of the fungal strain to remove the mercury(II) contaminant was evaluated in 100 mL sterile 10 mg/L Hg(2+)-contaminated potato dextrose broth media in 250 mL Erlenmeyer flasks inoculated with 10(8) spore/mL fungal spore suspension and incubation at 30°C for 7 days. The mercury(II) utilization was observed for flasks shaken in a 130 r/min orbital shaker (shaken) and non-shaken flasks (static) treatments. Flasks containing contaminated media with no fungal spores were also provided as control. All treatments were done in triplicate. The strain was able to remove 97.50% and 98.73% mercury from shaken and static systems respectively. A. flavus strain KRP1 seems to have potential use in bioremediation of aqueous substrates containing mercury(II) through a biosorption mechanism. PMID:25079829

  20. MERCURY IN THE ENVIRONMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mercury is released from a variety of sources and exhibits a complicated chemistry. According to the Mercury Study Report to Congress, mercury fluxes and budgets in water, soil, and other media have increased by a factor of two to five over pre-industrial levels. The primary expo...

  1. Investigating the control of mercury volatilization from contaminated soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steffy, D. A.; Nichols, A.

    2009-12-01

    In previous investigations of growing earthworms, Lumbricus terrestris, in contaminated soil, we have found that volatilization of mercury (Hg) to be an active process. The question to be answered is what causes the reduction of Hg to a more volatile state in the soil, could it be the earthworms? A series of laboratory tests were conducted to determine the mechanism of Hg reduction. The tests revealed that earthworms bioaccumulate the Hg in their tissue, but do not aid in the reduction process. Microbial reduction of the Hg appears to be the mechanism. Two dissimilar soil types were tested; both were heated for 96 hours at 100oC. After cooling, both soil types were spiked with 100 mg of Hg per Kg of soil. Integrated Hg vapor samples were collected immediately above the soil surface over a 3 day period and analyzed by cold vapor atomic adsorption. After heat treatment both soil types had a statistically significantly higher rate of volatilization than unheated soils. We interpret this result as indicating that heating preferentially selected microbial spores that facilitated the Hg reduction.

  2. Comparison of Adsorbed Mercury Screening Method With Cold-Vapor Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry for Determination of Mercury in Soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Easterling, Donald F.; Hovanitz, Edward S.; Street, Kenneth W.

    2000-01-01

    A field screening method for the determination of elemental mercury in environmental soil samples involves the thermal desorption of the mercury from the sample onto gold and then the thermal desorption from the gold to a gold-film mercury vapor analyzer. This field screening method contains a large number of conditions that could be optimized for the various types of soils encountered. In this study, the conditions were optimized for the determination of mercury in silty clay materials, and the results were comparable to the cold-vapor atomic absorption spectrophotometric method of determination. This paper discusses the benefits and disadvantages of employing the field screening method and provides the sequence of conditions that must be optimized to employ this method of determination on other soil types.

  3. Mercury distribution in the soil-plant-air system at the Wanshan mercury mining district in Guizhou, Southwest China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jianxu; Feng, Xinbin; Anderson, Christopher W N; Zhu, Wei; Yin, Runsheng; Wang, Heng

    2011-12-01

    The level of mercury bioaccumulation in wild plants; the distribution of bioavailable Hg, elemental Hg, and total Hg in soil; and the concentration of total gaseous Hg (TGM) in ambient air was studied at three different mining sites (SiKeng [SK], WuKeng [WK], and GouXi [GX]) in the Wanshan mercury mining district of China. Results of the present study showed that the distribution of soil total Hg, elemental Hg, bioavailable Hg, and TGM varies across the three mining sites. Higher soil total Hg (29.4-1,972.3 mg/kg) and elemental Hg (19.03-443.8 mg/kg) concentrations were recorded for plots SK and WK than for plot GX. Bioavailable Hg was lower at plot SK and GX (SK, 3-12 ng/g; GX, 9-14 ng/g) than at plot WK (11-1,063 ng/g), although the TGM concentration in the ambient air was significantly higher for plot GX (52,723 ng/m(3) ) relative to WK (106 ng/m(3) ) and SK (43 ng/m(3)). Mercury in sampled herbage was elevated and ranged from 0.8 to 4.75 mg/kg (SK), from 2.17 to 34.38 mg/kg (WK), and from 47.45 to 136.5 mg/kg (GX). Many of the sampled plants are used as fodder or for medicinal purposes. High shoot Hg concentrations may therefore pose an unacceptable human health risk. Statistical analysis of the recorded data showed that the Hg concentration in plant shoots was positively correlated with TGM and that the Hg concentration in roots was positively correlated with the bioavailable Hg concentration in the soil. The bioaccumulation factor (BAF) in the present study was defined with reference to the concentration of bioavailable Hg in the soil (Hg([root]) /Hg([bioavail])). Three plant species, Macleaya cordata L., Achillea millefolium L., and Pteris vittata L., showed enhanced accumulation of Hg and therefore may have potential for use in the phytoremediation of soils of the Wanshan mining area. PMID:21935979

  4. Mercury in vegetation and soils at abandoned mercury mines in southwestern Alaska, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bailey, E.A.; Gray, J.E.; Theodorakos, P.M.

    2002-01-01

    We chemically analysed vegetation (willow and alder) and soil samples collected at three abandoned mercury (Hg) mines and at background sites in southwestern Alaska and compared Hg concentrations, speciation and distribution. Total Hg and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations were higher in vegetation and soil samples from all the mine sites compared to samples from the background sites, but there was no correlation between total-Hg concentrations in vegetation and total-Hg concentrations in soil or between total-Hg and MeHg concentrations. However, the percent MeHg of the total Hg was higher in samples from the background sites compared to samples from the mine sites and is higher in vegetation samples than in corresponding soil samples. The percent MeHg is an order of magnitude higher in the willow samples than in corresponding alder or soil samples. The percent of divalent Hg [Hg(II)] is highest in soil samples from the retort and background areas. The higher percent MeHg in vegetation and soil in samples from background sites may be explained by the higher proportions of reactive Hg species, such as Hg(II), at these sites compared to the surface mined and tailings areas where most of the Hg is in the elemental and cinnabar (HgS) forms. Dissolved gaseous Hg species are more readily accumulated in vegetation and are more readily methylated than solid phases like HgS and liquid Hg.

  5. Quantification of Labile Soil Mercury by Stable Isotope Dilution Techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shetaya, Waleed; Huang, Jen-How; Osterwalder, Stefan; Alewell, Christine

    2016-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a toxic element that can cause severe health problems to humans. Mercury is emitted to the atmosphere from both natural and anthropogenic sources and can be transported over long distances before it is deposited to aquatic and terrestrial environments. Aside from accumulation in soil solid phases, Hg deposited in soils may migrate to surface- and ground-water or enter the food chain, depending on its lability. There are many operationally-defined extraction methods proposed to quantify soil labile metals. However, these methods are by definition prone to inaccuracies such as non-selectivity, underestimation or overestimation of the labile metal pool. The isotopic dilution technique (ID) is currently the most promising method for discrimination between labile and non-labile metal fractions in soil with a minimum disturbance to soil-solid phases. ID assesses the reactive metal pool in soil by defining the fraction of metal both in solid and solution phases that is isotopically-exchangeable known as the 'E-value'. The 'E-value' represents the metal fraction in a dynamic equilibrium with the solution phase and is potentially accessible to plants. This is carried out by addition of an enriched metal isotope to soil suspensions and quantifying the fraction of metal that is able to freely exchange with the added isotope by measuring the equilibrium isotopic ratio by ICP-MS. E-value (mg kg‑1) is then calculated as follows: E-Value = (Msoil/ W) (CspikeVspike/ Mspike) (Iso1IAspike ‑Iso2IAspikeRss / Iso2IAsoil Rss - Iso1IAsoil) where M is the average atomic mass of the metal in the soil or the spike, W is the mass of soil (kg), Cspike is the concentration of the metal in the spike (mg L‑1), Vspike is the volume of spike (L), IA is isotopic abundance, and Rss is the equilibrium ratio of isotopic abundances (Iso1:Iso2). Isotopic dilution has been successfully applied to determine E-values for several elements. However, to our knowledge, this method has not

  6. MERCURY DISTRIBUTION IN SOIL AROUND A LARGE COAL-FIRED POWER PLANT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Seventy soil samples were collected on a radial grid employing sixteen evenly spaced radii and five logarithmically spaced circles, concentric around the Four Corners power plant. The soil samples were analyzed for total mercury using a Zeeman Atomic Absorption spectrophotometer....

  7. Egg mercury levels decline with the laying sequence in charadriiformes

    SciTech Connect

    Becker, P.H. )

    1992-05-01

    Whereas pollutants do not differ in concentration among eggs of one clutch in some bird species, in gulls, terns and grebes several organochlorines show intraclutch variation: Concentrations increase with the laying sequence. Heavy metals, however, are not so intensively studied with respect to intraclutch variation. In contrast to lead and cadmium, mercury is accumulated in great quantities in eggs. Variation in mercury levels between the eggs of one clutch were low compared to interclutch variability in the White-tailed Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla) and the Peregrine (Falco peregrinus). In gulls, however, intraclutch variation was significant and characterized by higher mercury levels in the first than in subsequently laid eggs, which is the opposite to the trend in organochlorine levels. In this paper, the author reports on investigations of intraclutch variation in mercury levels in three Charadriiform-species, Herring Gull, Common Tern and Oystercatcher (Haematopus ostralegus). The results confirm those previously reported in gulls and point to the importance of the egg in reducing the females' mercury burden. 23 refs, 2 tabs.

  8. Mercury dispersion in soils of an abandoned lead-zinc-silver mine, San Quintín (Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esbrí, José Maria; Martín-Crespo, T.; Gómez-Ortiz, D.; Monescillo, C. I.; Lorenzo, S.; Higueras, P.

    2010-05-01

    The mine considered on this work, namely San Quintín, is a filonian field with hydrothermal ores exploited during almost fifty years (1887-1934), producing 550.000Tm of galena, 550Tm of silver and 5.000 of sphalerite. Some rewashing works of tailings muds was achieved in recent times (1973-1985), including flotation tests of cinnabar ore from Almadén mines. The main problems remaining on the site are an active acid mine drainage (with pH ~ 2) and heavy metal dispersion on soils including gaseous mercury emissions. We present here results of a survey including soils sampling with mercury analysis and other pedological parameters, as well as determinations of mercury inmission in the atmosphere, using a common sampling grid. Analysis of soils samples has been carried out using an atomic absorption spectrometer AMA254, while air determinations were made by the same technique, using a Lumex RA-915+. The maps have been obtained by means of SURFER 8 software, as well as by ArcGIS software, and puts forward dispersion of mercury from cinnabar ore dump (108 ?g×g-1) to nearby soils (0.3 ?g×g-1 at 700 m of distance). The dispersion of mercury vapor exceed WHO level for chronic exposure (200 ng×m-3) in a small area (250 meters from cinnabar dump).

  9. Mercury levels of marine fish commonly consumed in Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Ahmad, Nurul Izzah; Noh, Mohd Fairulnizal Mohd; Mahiyuddin, Wan Rozita Wan; Jaafar, Hamdan; Ishak, Ismail; Azmi, Wan Nurul Farah Wan; Veloo, Yuvaneswary; Hairi, Mohd Hairulhisam

    2015-03-01

    This study was conducted to determine the concentration of total mercury in the edible portion of 46 species of marine fish (n = 297) collected from selected major fish landing ports and wholesale markets throughout Peninsular Malaysia. Samples were collected in June to December 2009. Prior to analysis, the fish samples were processed which consisted of drying at 65 °C until a constant weight was attained; then, it was grounded and digested by a microwave digestion system. The analytical determination was carried out by using a mercury analysis system. Total mercury concentration among fish species was examined. The results showed that mercury concentrations were found significantly higher (p < 0.001) in demersal fish (the range was from 0.173 to 2.537 mg/kg in dried weight) compared to pelagic fish (which ranged from 0.055 to 2.137 mg/kg in dried weight). The mercury concentrations were also higher in carnivorous fish especially in the species with more predatory feeding habits. Besides, the family group of Latidae (0.537 ± 0.267 mg/kg in dried weight), Dasyatidae (0.492 ± 0.740 mg/kg in dried weight), and Lutjanidae (0.465 ± 0.566 mg/kg in dried weight) showed significantly (p < 0.001) higher mercury levels compared to other groups. Fish collected from Port Klang (0.563 ± 0.509 mg/kg in dry weight), Kuala Besar (0.521 ± 0.415 mg/kg in dry weight), and Pandan (0.380 ± 0.481 mg/kg in dry weight) were significantly higher (p = 0.014) in mercury concentrations when compared to fish from other sampling locations. Total mercury levels were significantly higher (p < 0.002) in bigger fish (body length >20 cm) and were positively related with fish size (length and weight) in all fish samples. Despite the results, the level of mercury in marine fish did not exceed the permitted levels of Malaysian and JECFA guideline values at 0.5 mg/kg methylmercury in fish. PMID:25256581

  10. Immediate and long-term fire effects on total mercury in forests soils of northeastern Minnesota.

    PubMed

    Woodruff, Laurel G; Cannon, William F

    2010-07-15

    Within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northeastern Minnesota, soils were collected from 116 sites in areas of primarily virgin forest with fire-origin stand years (year of last recognizable stand-killing wildfire) that range from the 1759 to 1976. Median concentrations for total mercury in soils for this span of 217 years range from 0.28 +/- 0.088 ppm (1759) to 0.09 +/- 0.047 ppm (1976) for A-horizon soils and from 0.23 +/- 0.062 ppm (1759) to 0.09 +/- 0.018 ppm (1976) for O-horizon soils. A separate study of soils collected from 30 sites within an area that burned in a 2004 wildfire at Voyageurs National Park, northern Minnesota, suggested that high soil burn severity resulted in significant mercury loss from both organic and mineral soils. Integrated data from these two studies and additional regional soil data demonstrate that older forests have progressively higher mercury concentrations in O-horizon soils (r(2) = 0.423) and A-horizon soils (r(2) = 0.456). These results support the hypotheses that an important factor for mercury concentrations in forest soils is time since stand-replacing fire and that high soil burn severity has the potential to reduce the concentration of mercury in burned soils for tens to hundreds of years. PMID:20553021

  11. Mercury Deposition Through Litterfall and Subsequent Accumulation in Soils: Influence of Forest Community Type

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juillerat, J. I.; Ross, D. S.

    2009-12-01

    We investigated the influence of community type on mercury deposition to forest soils, more precisely to the Oi, Oe, Oa, and A soil horizons. Studies have estimated that roughly half the mercury deposition in forests occurs through litterfall. Because of the importance of litterfall in the mercury deposition process, the presence or absence of forest and the type of forest may have a large impact on the magnitude of the deposition fluxes and the accumulation in soils. Eighteen sites were sampled in 2008 and 2009, throughout Vermont. The sites were located in three distinct Northern Forest community types: Northern Hardwoods, Enriched Northern Hardwoods, and Lowland Spruce-Fir. This poster will present total mercury (THg) concentration in the upper soil horizons at nine sites sampled in 2008 (THg: 59-300 ng/g, n=100), as well as mercury concentration in leaves at five of these sites, for each major tree species present (THg: 23-104 ng/g, n=25). Results were consistent within soil horizons and within tree species. Total leaf mass at senescence was measured at these five sites and an estimate of total mercury mass per hectare deposited yearly through litterfall will be presented for each site. Research has shown that mercury in soils relates to the retention of organic carbon; mercury to carbon ratio has previously been suggested for assessing Hg mobility. Mercury to carbon ratios was calculated for each soil horizon sampled and will be compared. Earthworms are invasive in Vermont and may greatly influence the depth of organic horizons and thus have the potential to affect the ability of soils to act as sink for mercury. Earthworms were detected at some but not all of the sites sampled. The detection or non-detection of earthworms and the associated forest floor depth will be discussed.

  12. Air-soil exchange of mercury from background soils in the United States.

    PubMed

    Ericksen, J A; Gustin, M S; Xin, M; Weisberg, P J; Fernandez, G C J

    2006-08-01

    The air-surface exchange of mercury (Hg) was measured, using a dynamic polycarbonate flux chamber, for soils with low or "background" Hg concentrations (<0.1 mg/kg) at eleven locations across the contiguous United States. Sampling locations included agricultural, desert, grassland, mixed and pine forest ecosystems (n=1326 soil flux measurements at 46 individual sites). An overall soil Hg flux of 0.9+/-0.2 ng/m2/h for these background soils was obtained by averaging the means for the different locations. Soil Hg fluxes were significantly lower in dark conditions than in the light for all but the grassland sites. Mean inlet air Hg concentrations were 1.0+/-0.1 ng/m3 in the dark and 1.3+/-0.2 ng/m3 in the light. Soil temperature inside and outside of the chamber, air temperature, relative humidity, and irradiance were measured concurrently with soil Hg flux. Soil-air Hg exchange was weakly predicted by environmental variables (R2 from 0.07 to 0.52). For a single location, flux was better correlated with soil moisture than other measured environmental parameters, suggesting that soil moisture might be an important driver for Hg emissions from background soils. In addition, based on data collected we suggest some quality control measures for use of Tekran 2537A analyzers when measuring low mercury fluxes. Using basic scaling procedures, we roughly estimate that natural emissions from soils in the contiguous U.S. release approximately 100 Mg/yr of Hg to the atmosphere. PMID:16181661

  13. Increases in mercury emissions from desert soils in response to rainfall and irrigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindberg, S. E.; Zhang, H.; Gustin, M.; Vette, A.; Marsik, F.; Owens, J.; Casimir, A.; Ebinghaus, R.; Edwards, G.; Fitzgerald, C.; Kemp, J.; Kock, H. H.; London, J.; Majewski, M.; Poissant, L.; Pilote, M.; Rasmussen, P.; Schaedlich, F.; Schneeberger, D.; Sommar, J.; Turner, R.; WallschläGer, D.; Xiao, Z.

    1999-09-01

    As part of an international Hg flux intercomparison at the Steamboat Springs, Nevada, geothermal area, several dynamic soil flux chambers and micrometeorological gradient systems were operated over desert soils in early September 1997. A series of unanticipated convective rain cells impacted the site with the first rainfall in ˜90 days, and the initial 4-cm rainfall increased soil moisture from ˜0.01 to 0.06% (vol/vol). Several chambers were operating prior to the events, and two were deployed over wet soils following rainfall. Rainfall resulted in an immediate and steep rise in ambient air Hg concentrations and soil Hg emissions which persisted for 12-24 hours. Fluxes increased most quickly and to a greater degree over the wettest soils, and the rate of increase was related to chamber design and flushing rate. The flux response was also apparent in the micrometeorological data. In general, soil emissions increased by an order of magnitude following the rain, and reached levels ˜6 times above those at the same time the previous day. These fluxes were significantly correlated with temperature, radiation, humidity, wind speed, and soil moisture. After drying for ˜40 hours, selected soil plots were manually irrigated with low-Hg-distilled water. Mercury emissions responded similarly across the three treated sites, uniformly increasing from ˜60 ng m-2 h-1 pretreatment to ˜650 ng m-2 h-1 posttreatment, which was a factor of ˜6 higher than adjacent control soils. Possible causes of the increases in flux include soil gas displacement, desorption of Hg° by water molecules, and desorption of Hg(II) and subsequent reduction in solution. The kinetics of the flux response, combined with local soil and climatic conditions, suggest that Hg emissions were responding primarily to soil moisture and solar radiation. These data have interesting implications for the role of changing regional climates on biogeochemical cycling of Hg.

  14. High residue levels and the chemical form of mercury in tissues and organs of seabirds

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, E.Y.; Murakami, Toru; Saeki, Kazutoshi; Tatsukawa, Ryo

    1995-12-31

    Total and organic (methyl) mercury in liver, muscle, kidney and feather of 9 species of seabirds were analyzed to determine the levels and their distribution and to clarify the occurrences of high mercury levels and their detoxification process in seabirds. Total mercury levels in liver showed great variations in intra and interspecies, while organic mercury levels were less variable. As compared with species in relatively low mercury levels, the species which accumulated the high concentration of mercury like black-footed albatross exhibited the different distribution of mercury in the body: in total mercury burden, albatross species contained less than 10% in feather and over 50% in liver, while other species contained over 40% in feather and less than 20% in liver. The order of organic mercury concentrations in tissues were as follows: liver > kidney > muscle in seabirds examined, except oldsquaw. The mean percentage of organic mercury in total was 35%, 66%, and 36% in liver, muscle and kidney, respectively, for all the species. The significant negative correlations were found between organic mercury percentage to total mercury and total mercury concentrations in the liver and muscle of black-footed albatross and in the liver of laysan albatross. Furthermore, in liver, muscle, and kidney of all the species, the percentages of organic mercury had a negative trend with an increase of total mercury concentrations. The results suggest that albatross species may be capable for demethylating organic mercury in the tissues (mainly in liver), and for storing the mercury as immobilizable inorganic form in the liver as substitution for delivering organic mercury to other organs. It is noteworthy that the species with high degree of demethylation showed the lower mercury burdens in feather and slow moulting pattern.

  15. Characterization of soil fauna under the influence of mercury atmospheric deposition in Atlantic Forest, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Buch, Andressa Cristhy; Correia, Maria Elizabeth Fernandes; Teixeira, Daniel Cabral; Silva-Filho, Emmanoel Vieira

    2015-06-01

    The increasing levels of mercury (Hg) found in the atmosphere arising from anthropogenic sources, have been the object of great concern in the past two decades in industrialized countries. Brazil is the seventh country with the highest rate of mercury in the atmosphere. The major input of Hg to ecosystems is through atmospheric deposition (wet and dry), being transported in the atmosphere over large distances. The forest biomes are of strong importance in the atmosphere/soil cycling of elemental Hg through foliar uptake and subsequent transference to the soil through litter, playing an important role as sink of this element. Soil microarthropods are keys to understanding the soil ecosystem, and for such purpose were characterized by the soil fauna of two Units of Forest Conservation of the state of the Rio de Janeiro, inwhich one of the areas suffer quite interference from petrochemicals and industrial anthropogenic activities and other area almost exempts of these perturbations. The results showed that soil and litter of the Atlantic Forest in Brazil tend to stock high mercury concentrations, which could affect the abundance and richness of soil fauna, endangering its biodiversity and thereby the functioning of ecosystems. PMID:26040748

  16. Mercury and plants in contaminated soils. 1: Uptake, partitioning, and emission to the atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Leonard, T.L.; Gustin, M.S.; Fernandez, G.C.J.; Taylor, G.E. Jr.

    1998-10-01

    The uptake, distribution, and subsequent emission of mercury to the atmosphere were investigated in five plant species (Lepidium latifolium [L.], Artemisia douglasiana [Bess in Hook], Caulanthus sp. [S. Watson], Fragaria vesca [L.], and Eucalyptus globulus [Labill]) with different ecological and physiological attributes. Transfer coefficients for mercury in the soil-plant system were calculated. Plant-to-atmosphere emissions of mercury were determined using a controlled environment gas-exchange system and ranged from 10 to 93 mg/m{sup 2}/h in the light; emissions in the dark were an order of magnitude less. Transfer coefficients for mercury within the soil-plant system increased acropetally (root-to-leaf axis) by orders of magnitude. Estimated mercury emissions from plants in the Carson River Drainage Basin of Nevada over the growing season (0.5 mg/m{sup 2}) add to the previously reported soil mercury emissions (8.5 mg/m{sup 2}), resulting in total landscape emissions of 9 mg/m{sup 2}. For L. latifolium, 70% of the mercury taken up by the roots during the growing season was emitted to the atmosphere. For every one molecule of mercury retained in foliage of L. latifolium, 12 molecules of mercury were emitted. Within this arid ecosystem, mercury emissions are a dominant pathway of the mercury cycle. Plants function as conduits for the interfacial transport of mercury from the geosphere to the atmosphere, and this role is undervalued in models of the behavior of mercury in terrestrial exosystems and in the atmosphere on a global scale.

  17. Efficiency of solvent extraction methods for the determination of methyl mercury in forest soils.

    PubMed

    Qian, J; Skyllberg, U; Tu, Q; Bleam, W F; Frech, W

    2000-07-01

    Methyl mercury was determined by gas chromatography, microwave induced plasma, atomic emission spectrometry (GC-MIP-AES) using two different methods. One was based on extraction of mercury species into toluene, pre-concentration by evaporation and butylation of methyl mercury with a Grignard reagent followed by determination. With the other, methyl mercury was extracted into dichloromethane and back extracted into water followed by in situ ethylation, collection of ethylated mercury species on Tenax and determination. The accuracy of the entire procedure based on butylation was validated for the individual steps involved in the method. Methyl mercury added to various types of soil samples showed an overall average recovery of 87.5%. Reduced recovery was only caused by losses of methyl mercury during extraction into toluene and during pre-concentration by evaporation. The extraction of methyl mercury added to the soil was therefore quantitative. Since it is not possible to directly determine the extraction efficiency of incipient methyl mercury, the extraction efficiency of total mercury with an acidified solution containing CuSO4 and KBr was compared with high-pressure microwave acid digestion. The solvent extraction efficiency was 93%. For the IAEA 356 sediment certified reference material, mercury was less efficiently extracted and determined methyl mercury concentrations were below the certified value. Incomplete extraction could be explained by the presence of a large part of inorganic sulfides, as determined by x-ray absorption near-edge structure spectroscopy (XANES). Analyses of sediment reference material CRM 580 gave results in agreement with the certified value. The butylation method gave a detection limit for methyl mercury of 0.1 ng g(-1), calculated as three times the standard deviation for repeated analysis of soil samples. Lower values were obtained with the ethylation method. The precision, expressed as RSD for concentrations 20 times above the

  18. Determination of total mercury in nuts at ultratrace level.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Maria José; Paim, Ana Paula S; Pimentel, Maria Fernanda; Cervera, M Luisa; de la Guardia, Miguel

    2014-08-01

    Total mercury, at μg kg(-1) level, was determined in different types of nuts (cashew nut, Brazil nuts, almond, pistachio, peanut, walnut) using a direct mercury analyser after previous sample defatting and by cold vapour atomic fluorescence spectrometry. There is not enough sensitivity in the second approach to determine Hg in previously digested samples due to the strong matrix effect. Mercury levels in 25 edible nut samples from Brazil and Spain were found in the range from 0.6 to 2.7μg kg(-1) by using the pyrolysis of sample after the extraction of the nut fat. The accuracy of the proposed method was confirmed by analysing certified reference materials of Coal Fly Ash-NIST SRM 1633b, Fucus-IAEA 140 and three unpolished Rice Flour NIES-10. The observed results were in good agreement with the certified values. The recoveries of different amounts of mercury added to nut samples ranged from 94 to 101%. RSD values corresponding to three measurements varied between 2.0 and 14% and the limit of detection and quantification of the method were 0.08 and 0.3μg kg(-1), respectively. PMID:25064238

  19. Atmospheric mercury inputs in montane soils increase with elevation: evidence from mercury isotope signatures

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hua; Yin, Run-sheng; Feng, Xin-bin; Sommar, Jonas; Anderson, Christopher W. N.; Sapkota, Atindra; Fu, Xue-wu; Larssen, Thorjørn

    2013-01-01

    The influence of topography on the biogeochemical cycle of mercury (Hg) has received relatively little attention. Here, we report the measurement of Hg species and their corresponding isotope composition in soil sampled along an elevational gradient transect on Mt. Leigong in subtropical southwestern China. The data are used to explain orography-related effects on the fate and behaviour of Hg species in montane environments. The total- and methyl-Hg concentrations in topsoil samples show a positive correlation with elevation. However, a negative elevation dependence was observed in the mass-dependent fractionation (MDF) and mass-independent fractionation (MIF) signatures of Hg isotopes. Both a MIF (Δ199Hg) binary mixing approach and the traditional inert element method indicate that the content of Hg derived from the atmosphere distinctly increases with altitude. PMID:24270081

  20. Estimating historical atmospheric mercury concentrations from silver mining and their legacies in present-day surface soil in Potosí, Bolivia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagan, Nicole; Robins, Nicholas; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Halabi, Susan; Morris, Mark; Woodall, George; Zhang, Tong; Bacon, Allan; Richter, Daniel De B.; Vandenberg, John

    2011-12-01

    Detailed Spanish records of mercury use and silver production during the colonial period in Potosí, Bolivia were evaluated to estimate atmospheric emissions of mercury from silver smelting. Mercury was used in the silver production process in Potosí and nearly 32,000 metric tons of mercury were released to the environment. AERMOD was used in combination with the estimated emissions to approximate historical air concentrations of mercury from colonial mining operations during 1715, a year of relatively low silver production. Source characteristics were selected from archival documents, colonial maps and images of silver smelters in Potosí and a base case of input parameters was selected. Input parameters were varied to understand the sensitivity of the model to each parameter. Modeled maximum 1-h concentrations were most sensitive to stack height and diameter, whereas an index of community exposure was relatively insensitive to uncertainty in input parameters. Modeled 1-h and long-term concentrations were compared to inhalation reference values for elemental mercury vapor. Estimated 1-h maximum concentrations within 500 m of the silver smelters consistently exceeded present-day occupational inhalation reference values. Additionally, the entire community was estimated to have been exposed to levels of mercury vapor that exceed present-day acute inhalation reference values for the general public. Estimated long-term maximum concentrations of mercury were predicted to substantially exceed the EPA Reference Concentration for areas within 600 m of the silver smelters. A concentration gradient predicted by AERMOD was used to select soil sampling locations along transects in Potosí. Total mercury in soils ranged from 0.105 to 155 mg kg-1, among the highest levels reported for surface soils in the scientific literature. The correlation between estimated air concentrations and measured soil concentrations will guide future research to determine the extent to which the

  1. [Correlation of fat content and dioxins, total mercury and methyl mercury levels in tuna].

    PubMed

    Kawakami, Hiroyuki; Amakura, Yoshiaki; Tsutsumi, Tomoaki; Sasaki, Kumiko; Iketsu, Ayumi; Inasaki, Mizue; Kubota, Emi; Toyoda, Masatake

    2010-01-01

    In this study, we analyzed the concentrations of mercury and dioxins in tuna with various fat contents (akami; the leaner meat, Chutoro; the belly area of the tuna along the side of the fish between the akami and the otoro. Otoro; the fattiest portion of the tuna) in wild and farmed bluefin tuna and farmed southern bluefin tuna. In the three kinds of tuna, average dioxins concentrations in Akami, chutoro and otoro were 1.7, 4.7 and 9.6 pg TEQ/g, respectively. The dioxins concentration in all three regions of tuna was in direct proportion to the fat content. In the farmed bluefin tuna, the dioxins concentration was almost the same as that of the wild tuna, but differed from that of the farmed southern bluefin tuna. Average total mercury concentration based on wet weight in akami was 0.42 µg/g, being higher than the values of 0.36 µg/g of chutoro and 0.31 µg/g of otoro, and in inverse proportion to the fat content. In all three regions, the total mercury concentration of the wild bluefin tuna was equal to that of the farmed tuna. The total mercury concentration in the latter was two to three times higher than that of the farmed southern bluefin tuna. If the Japanese intake is one fin of tuna (80 g) a day, the daily intake levels of dioxins and methyl mercury can be estimated as 0.48-37 pg TEQ/kg bw and 0.21-0.90 µg/kg bw, respectively. PMID:21071911

  2. Mercury Source Zone Identification using Soil Vapor Sampling and Analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Watson, David B; Miller, Carrie L; Lester, Brian P; Lowe, Kenneth Alan; Southworth, George R; Bogle, Mary Anna; Liang, Liyuan; Pierce, Eric M

    2014-01-01

    Development and demonstration of reliable measurement techniqes that can detect and help quantify the nature and extent of elemental mercury (Hg(0)) in the subsurface are needed to reduce certainties in the decision making process and increase the effectiveness of remedial actions. We conducted field tests at the Y-12 National Security Complex (NSC) in Oak Ridge, TN, to determine if sampling and analysis of Hg(0) vapors in the shallow subsurface (<0.3 m depth) can be used to as an indicator of the location and extent of Hg(0) releases in the subsurface. We constructed a rigid PVC pushprobe assembly, which was driven into the ground. Soil gas samples were collected through a sealed inner tube of the assembly and analyzed immediately in the field with a Lumex and/or Jerome Hg(0) analyzer. Time-series sampling showed that Hg vapor concentrations were fairly stable over time suggesting that the vapor phase Hg(0) was not being depleted and that sampling results were not dependent on the soil gas purge volume. Hg(0) vapor data collected at over 200 pushprobe locations at 3 different release sites correlated well to areas of known Hg(0) contamination. Vertical profiling of Hg(0) vapor concentrations conducted at 2 locations provided information on the vertical distribution of Hg(0) contamination in the subsurface. We concluded from our studies that soil gas sampling and analysis can be conducted rapidly and inexpensively at a large scale to help identify areas contaminated with Hg(0).

  3. Selenium in soil inhibits mercury uptake and translocation in rice (Oryza sativa L.).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hua; Feng, Xinbin; Zhu, Jianming; Sapkota, Atindra; Meng, Bo; Yao, Heng; Qin, Haibo; Larssen, Thorjørn

    2012-09-18

    A great number of studies have confirmed that mercury-selenium (Hg-Se) antagonism is a widespread phenomenon in microorganisms, fish, poultry, humans, and other mammals. However, by comparison, little attention has been paid to plants. To investigate the influence of Se on the uptake and translocation of methylHg/inorganic Hg (MeHg/IHg) in the rice-soil system, we determined the levels of Se, IHg, and MeHg in different parts of rice plants (including the root, stem, leaf, husk, and grain (brown rice)) and corresponding soils of root zones collected from a Hg mined area, where Hg and Se co-occur due to historic Hg mining and retorting activities. The results showed that, in general, the Se levels were inversely related to the levels of both IHg and MeHg in the grains. In addition, a consistent reduction in translocation of both IHg and MeHg in the aerial shoots (i.e., the stem, leaf, husk, and grain) with increasing Se levels in the soils was observed. Furthermore, the Se levels were positively correlated with the IHg levels in the soils and the roots. These results suggest that Se may play an important role in limiting the bioaccessibility, absorption, and translocation/bioaccumulation of both IHg and MeHg in the aerial rice plant, which may be related to the formation of an Hg-Se insoluble complex in the rhizospheres and/or roots. PMID:22916794

  4. Human hair mercury levels in the Wanshan mercury mining area, Guizhou Province, China.

    PubMed

    Li, Ping; Feng, Xinbin; Qiu, Guangle; Shang, Lihai; Li, Guanghui

    2009-12-01

    The total mercury (T-Hg) and methyl mercury (Me-Hg) concentrations in the hair were measured to evaluate mercury (Hg) exposure for the residents in Da-shui-xi Village (DSX) and Xia-chang-xi Village (XCX) in the Wanshan Hg mining area, Guizhou Province, Southwestern China. The mean concentrations in the hair of DSX residents were 5.5 ± 2.7 μg/g and 1.9 ± 0.9 μg/g for T-Hg and Me-Hg, respectively. The concentrations in the hair of XCX residents were 3.3 ± 1.4 μg/g and 1.2 ± 0.5 μg/g for T-Hg and Me-Hg, respectively. Hair Me-Hg concentrations were significantly correlated to T-Hg (r = 0.42, P < 0.01) in the two sites; on average, hair Me-Hg concentration accounted for 40 and 44% of T-Hg for DSX and XCX residents, respectively. Age has no obvious correlation with hair Hg and the hair Hg levels showed a significant gender difference, with higher T-Hg and Me-Hg concentrations in the hair from males than females. The rice collected from the two sites showed high levels of T-Hg and Me-Hg concentration. The results indicated a certain Hg exposure for the residents in DSX and XCX in the Wanshan Hg mining area. PMID:19160059

  5. Assessment of Dietary Mercury Intake and Blood Mercury Levels in the Korean Population: Results from the Korean National Environmental Health Survey 2012-2014.

    PubMed

    Kim, Seong-Ah; Kwon, YoungMin; Kim, Suejin; Joung, Hyojee

    2016-01-01

    From a public health perspective, there is growing concern about dietary mercury intake as the most important source of mercury exposure. This study was performed to estimate dietary mercury exposure and to analyze the association between mercury intake and blood mercury levels in Koreans. The study subjects were 553 adults, comprising a 10% representative subsample of the Korean National Environmental Health Survey (KoNEHS) 2012-2014, who completed a health examination, a face-to-face interview, and a three-day food record. Dietary mercury and methylmercury intakes were assessed from the three-day food record, and blood mercury concentration was measured using a mercury analyzer. The association between dietary mercury intake and blood mercury levels was analyzed by comparing the odds ratios for the blood mercury levels above the Human BioMonitoring (HBM) I value (5 μg/L) among the three groups with different mercury intakes. The average total mercury intake was 4.74 and 3.07 μg/day in males and females, respectively. The food group that contributed most to mercury intake was fish and shellfish, accounting for 77.8% of total intake. The geometric mean of the blood mercury concentration significantly and linearly increased with the mercury and methylmercury intakes (p < 0.001). The odds ratios for blood mercury levels above the HBM I value in the highest mercury and methyl mercury intake group were 3.27 (95% Confidence Interval (CI) 1.79-5.95) and 3.20 (95% CI 1.77-5.79) times higher than that of the lowest intake group, respectively. Our results provide compelling evidence that blood mercury level has a strong positive association with dietary intake, and that fish and shellfish contribute most to the dietary mercury exposure. PMID:27598185

  6. Total mercury, organic mercury and mercury fractionation in soil profiles from the Almadén mercury mine area.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Martínez, Rodolfo; Rucandio, Isabel

    2014-02-01

    Soil profiles located in the mining district of Almadén were investigated for total Hg, organic Hg fraction and Hg distribution by selective sequential extraction. A four-step sequential extraction method (labile Hg species, humic and fulvic complexes, elemental Hg and bound to crystalline oxides and Hg sulfide and refractory species) was performed. Total Hg concentrations ranged from 13 to 64 mg per kg dry mass. A clear relationship between the depth and Hg content was found since Hg concentration decreases downwards, which is indicative of anthropogenic contamination via deposition processes from nearby mine waste. Significant organic Hg concentrations were found in all the tested soil profiles ranging from 79 to 287 μg kg(-1) (dry weight). It seems that organic Hg was strongly influenced by elemental Hg (r = 0.79) and to a lesser extent by the organic carbon content (r = 0.57). The fractionation revealed that Hg exists mainly as cinnabar in the studied soils, which is one of the least available and mobile Hg species, and as elemental Hg as well. The most mobile Hg fractions only accounted for 3.2 to 7.7% of the total Hg content, with the main contribution being the humic and fulvic complexes fraction. The elemental Hg fraction increased with depth indicating a migration to deeper soil layers. In contrast, the surface layers showed an enrichment in the fraction bound to sulfide, which means that Hg is mostly deposited as cinnabar particles from non-processed ore in this area. PMID:24441501

  7. Mercury emission and dispersion models from soils contaminated by cinnabar mining and metallurgy.

    PubMed

    Llanos, Willians; Kocman, David; Higueras, Pablo; Horvat, Milena

    2011-12-01

    The laboratory flux measurement system (LFMS) and dispersion models were used to investigate the kinetics of mercury emission flux (MEF) from contaminated soils. Representative soil samples with respect to total Hg concentration (26-9770 μg g(-1)) surrounding a decommissioned mercury-mining area (Las Cuevas Mine), and a former mercury smelter (Cerco Metalúrgico de Almadenejos), in the Almadén mercury mining district (South Central Spain), were collected. Altogether, 14 samples were analyzed to determine the variation in mercury emission flux (MEF) versus distance from the sources, regulating two major environmental parameters comprising soil temperature and solar radiation. In addition, the fraction of the water-soluble mercury in these samples was determined in order to assess how MEF from soil is related to the mercury in the aqueous soil phase. Measured MEFs ranged from less than 140 to over 10,000 ng m(-2) h(-1), with the highest emissions from contaminated soils adjacent to point sources. A significant decrease of MEF was then observed with increasing distance from these sites. Strong positive effects of both temperature and solar radiation on MEF was observed. Moreover, MEF was found to occur more easily in soils with higher proportions of soluble mercury compared to soils where cinnabar prevails. Based on the calculated Hg emission rates and with the support of geographical information system (GIS) tools and ISC AERMOD software, dispersion models for atmospheric mercury were implemented. In this way, the gaseous mercury plume generated by the soil-originated emissions at different seasons was modeled. Modeling efforts revealed that much higher emissions and larger mercury plumes are generated in dry and warm periods (summer), while the plume is smaller and associated with lower concentrations of atmospheric mercury during colder periods with higher wind activity (fall). Based on the calculated emissions and the model implementation, yearly emissions from

  8. Mercury mobilisation from soils and ashes after a wildfire and rainfall events: effects of vegetation type and fire severity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Campos, Isabel; Abrantes, Nelson; Keizer, Jan Jacob; Vale, Carlos; Serpa, Dalila; Pereira, Patrícia

    2016-04-01

    Wildfire is a major disturbance of forests worldwide, with huge environmental impacts. The number of catastrophic wildfires is increasing over the past few decades mainly due to a combined effect of climate change and poor land-use management. Interestingly, wildfires have an important role in contaminants production and mobilization and, thus, on their biogeochemical cycles. For instance, trace elements could be mobilized during a wildfire from burnt vegetation and ashes and may eventually achieve the aquatic systems upon a rainfall period. In this regard, wildfires represent a relevant diffuse source of trace elements to aquatic systems that has, so far, been poorly investigated. The current study aims to mitigate such lack of knowledge for mercury, a well-recognized persistent toxicant with potential harmful impacts on the environment and on human health. Thus, a field study was conducted in two Portuguese forests (Ermida and S. Pedro do Sul, North-centre of Portugal) with distinct fire severity. Fire was classified as moderate in Ermida and moderate to high severity in S. Pedro do Sul. In Ermida, soil samples and ashes were collected in the seven hillslopes (three burnt eucalypt, three burnt pine and one unburnt eucalypt) immediately and 4 months after the fire, the latter following an episode of intense rainfall. In S. Pedro do Sul, sampling took place immediately after the fire in four hillslopes (one burnt eucalypt and three burnt pine). Mercury analysis was performed in an Hg analyser in which samples were thermally decomposed by controlled heating. The final decomposition products were passed through an Hg amalgamator heated to 700 °C and Hg(0) was released and detected by absorption spectrometry at 254 nm. Burnt soil samples showed significantly lower levels of mercury than non-burnt soil, confirming the potential of a forest fire to release accumulated mercury in soil prior to the burning. Such process could be particularly relevant for this element due

  9. Mercury

    MedlinePlus

    ... button batteries. Mercury salts may be used in skin creams and ointments. It's also used in many industries. Mercury in the air settles into water. It can pass through the food chain and build up in ...

  10. Strong positive associations between seafood, vegetables, and alcohol with blood mercury and urinary arsenic levels in the Korean adult population.

    PubMed

    Park, Sunmin; Lee, Byung-Kook

    2013-01-01

    Blood mercury and urinary arsenic levels are more than fivefold greater in the Korean population compared with those of the United States. This may be related to the foods people consumed. Therefore, we examined the associations between food categories and mercury and arsenic exposure in the Korean adult population. Data regarding nutritional, biochemical, and health-related parameters were obtained from a cross-sectional study, the 2008-2009 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (3,404 men and women age ≥ 20 years). The log-transformed blood mercury and urinary arsenic levels were regressed against the frequency tertiles of each food group after covariate adjustment for sex, age, residence area, education level, smoking status, and drinking status using food-frequency data. Blood mercury levels in the high consumption groups compared to the low consumption groups were elevated by about 20 percents with salted fish, shellfish, whitefish, bluefish, and alcohol, and by about 9-14 percents with seaweeds, green vegetables, fruits and tea, whereas rice did not affect blood mercury levels. Urinary arsenic levels were markedly increased with consumption of rice, bluefish, salted fish, shellfish, whitefish, and seaweed, whereas they were moderately increased with consumption of grains, green and white vegetables, fruits, coffee, and alcohol. The remaining food categories tended to lower these levels only minimally. In conclusion, the typical Asian diet, which is high in rice, salted fish, shellfish, vegetables, alcoholic beverages, and tea, may be associated with greater blood mercury and urinary arsenic levels. This study suggests that mercury and arsenic contents should be monitored and controlled in soil and water used for agriculture to decrease health risks from heavy-metal contamination. PMID:23011092

  11. Accumulation of mercury in rice grain and cabbage grown on representative Chinese soils*

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Chun-fa; Wu, Cheng-xian; Rafiq, Muhammad T.; Aziz, Rukhsanda; Hou, Dan-di; Ding, Zhe-li; Lin, Zi-wen; Lou, Lin-jun; Feng, Yuan-yuan; Li, Ting-qiang; Yang, Xiao-e

    2013-01-01

    A pot culture experiment was carried out to investigate the accumulation properties of mercury (Hg) in rice grain and cabbage grown in seven soil types (Udic Ferrisols, Mollisol, Periudic Argosols, Latosol, Ustic Cambosols, Calcaric Regosols, and Stagnic Anthrosols) spiked with different concentrations of Hg (CK, 0.25, 0.50, 1.00, 2.00, and 4.00 mg/kg). The results of this study showed that Hg accumulation of plants was significantly affected by soil types. Hg concentration in both rice grain and cabbage increased with soil Hg concentrations, but this increase differed among the seven soils. The stepwise multiple regression analysis showed that pH, Mn(II), particle size distribution, and cation exchange capacity have a close relationship with Hg accumulation in plants, which suggested that physicochemical characteristics of soils can affect the Hg accumulation in rice grain and cabbage. Critical Hg concentrations in seven soils were identified for rice grain and cabbage based on the maximum safe level for daily intake of Hg, dietary habits of the population, and Hg accumulation in plants grown in different soil types. Soil Hg limits for rice grain in Udic Ferrisols, Mollisol, Periudic Argosols, Latosol, Ustic Cambosols, Calcaric Regosols, and Stagnic Anthrosols were 1.10, 2.00, 2.60, 2.78, 1.53, 0.63, and 2.17 mg/kg, respectively, and critical soil Hg levels for cabbage are 0.27, 1.35, 1.80, 1.70, 0.69, 1.68, and 2.60 mg/kg, respectively. PMID:24302714

  12. Simultaneous determination of mercury and organic carbon in sediment and soils using a direct mercury analyzer based on thermal decomposition-atomic absorption spectrophotometry.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jingjing; Chakravarty, Pragya; Davidson, Gregg R; Wren, Daniel G; Locke, Martin A; Zhou, Ying; Brown, Garry; Cizdziel, James V

    2015-04-29

    The purpose of this work was to study the feasibility of using a direct mercury analyzer (DMA) to simultaneously determine mercury (Hg) and organic matter content in sediment and soils. Organic carbon was estimated by re-weighing the sample boats post analysis to obtain loss-on-ignition (LOI) data. The DMA-LOI results were statistically similar (p<0.05) to the conventional muffle furnace approach. A regression equation was developed to convert DMA-LOI data to total organic carbon (TOC), which varied between 0.2% and 13.0%. Thus, mercury analyzers based on combustion can provide accurate estimates of organic carbon content in non-calcareous sediment and soils; however, weight gain from moisture (post-analysis), measurement uncertainty, and sample representativeness should all be taken into account. Sediment cores from seasonal wetland and open water areas from six oxbow lakes in the Mississippi River alluvial flood plain were analyzed. Wetland sediments generally had higher levels of Hg than open water areas owing to a greater fraction of fine particles and higher levels of organic matter. Annual loading of Hg in open water areas was estimated at 4.3, 13.4, 19.2, 20.7, 129, and 135 ng cm(-2) yr(-1) for Beasley, Roundaway, Hampton, Washington, Wolf and Sky Lakes, respectively. Generally, the interval with the highest Hg flux was dated to the 1960s and 1970s. PMID:25847156

  13. Glutathione level after long-term occupational elemental mercury exposure

    SciTech Connect

    Kobal, Alfred Bogomir Prezelj, Marija; Horvat, Milena; Krsnik, Mladen; Gibicar, Darija; Osredkar, Josko

    2008-05-15

    Many in vitro and in vivo studies have elucidated the interaction of inorganic mercury (Hg) and glutathione. However, human studies are limited. In this study, we investigated the potential effects of remote long-term intermittent occupational elemental Hg vapour (Hg{sup o}) exposure on erythrocyte glutathione levels and some antioxidative enzyme activities in ex-mercury miners in the period after exposure. The study included 49 ex-mercury miners divided into subgroups of 28 still active, Hg{sup o}-not-exposed miners and 21 elderly retired miners, and 41 controls, age-matched to the miners subgroup. The control workers were taken from 'mercury-free works'. Reduced glutathione (GSH) and oxidized disulphide glutathione (GSSG) concentrations in haemolysed erythrocytes were determined by capillary electrophoresis, while total glutathione (total GSH) and the GSH/GSSG ratio were calculated from the determined values. Catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), and glutathione reductase (GR) activities in erythrocytes were measured using commercially available reagent kits, while urine Hg (U-Hg) concentrations were determined by cold vapour atomic absorption (CVAAS). No correlation of present U-Hg levels, GSH, GSSG, and antioxidative enzymes with remote occupational biological exposure indices were found. The mean CAT activity in miners and retired miners was significantly higher (p<0.05) than in the controls. No differences in mean GPx activity among the three groups were found, whereas the mean GR activity was significantly higher (p<0.05) in miners than in retired miners. The mean concentrations of GSH (mmol/g Hb) in miners (13.03{+-}3.71) were significantly higher (p<0.05) than in the control group (11.68{+-}2.66). No differences in mean total GSH, GSSG levels, and GSH/GSSG ratio between miners and controls were found. A positive correlation between GSSG and present U-Hg excretion (r=0.41, p=0.001) in the whole group of ex-mercury miners was observed. The

  14. Methyl Mercury Production In Tropical Hydromorphic Soils: Impact Of Gold Mining.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guedron, S.; Charlet, L.; Harris, J.; Grimaldi, M.; Cossa, D.

    2007-12-01

    Artisanal alluvial gold mining is important in many tropical developing countries and several million people are involved worldwide. The dominant use of mercury for gold amalgamation in this activity leads to mercury accumulation in soils, to sediment contamination and to methyl mercury (MMHg) bioaccumulation along the food chain. In this presentation we will present recent data on methyl mercury production in hydromorphic soils and tailing ponds from a former gold mining area located in French Guiana (South America). Comparison of specific fluxes between a pristine sub watershed and the contaminated watershed shows that former mining activities lead to a large enhancement of dissolved and particulate MMHg emissions at least by a factor of 4 and 6, respectively. MMHg production was identified in sediments from tailing ponds and in surrounding hydromorphic soils. Moreover, interstitial soil water and tailing pond water profiles sampled in an experimental tailing pond demonstrate the presence of a large MMHg production in the suboxic areas. Both tailing ponds and hydromorphic soils present geochemical conditions that are favorable to bacterial mercury methylation (high soil Hg content, high aqueous ferric iron and dissolved organic carbon concentrations). Although sulfate-reducing bacteria have been described as being the principal mercury methylating bacteria, the positive correlation between dissolved MMHg and ferrous iron concentrations argue for a significant role of iron-reducing bacteria. Identifications by sequencing fragments of 16S rRNA from total soil DNA support these interpretations. This study demonstrates that current and past artisanal gold mining in the tropics lead to methyl mercury production in contaminated areas. As artisanal activities are increasing with increasing gold prices, the bio- magnification of methyl mercury in fish presents an increasing threat to local populations whose diet relies on fish consumption.

  15. Sulfur Polymer Stabilization/Solidification Treatability Study of Mercury Contaminated Soil from the Y-12 Site

    SciTech Connect

    Kalb P.; Milian, L.; Yim, S. P.

    2012-11-30

    As a result of past operations, the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Oak Ridge Y-12 National Security Complex (Y-12 Plant) has extensive mercury-contamination in building structures, soils, storm sewer sediments, and stream sediments, which are a source of pollution to the local ecosystem. Because of mercury’s toxicity and potential impacts on human health and the environment, DOE continues to investigate and implement projects to support the remediation of the Y-12 site.URS and #9122;CH2M Oak Ridge LLC (UCOR) under its prime contract with DOE has cleanup responsibilities on the DOE Oak Ridge Reservation and is investigating potential mercury-contaminated soil treatment technologies through an agreement with Babcock and Wilcox (B and W) Y-12, the Y-12 operating contractor to DOE. As part of its investigations, UCOR has subcontracted with Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) to conduct laboratory-scale studies evaluating the applicability of the Sulfur Polymer Stabilization/Solidification (SPSS) process using surrogate and actual mixed waste Y-12 soils containing mercury (Hg) at 135, 2,000, and 10,000 ppm.SPSS uses a thermoplastic sulfur binder to convert Hg to stable mercury sulfide (HgS) and solidifies the chemically stable product in a monolithic solid final waste form to reduce dispersion and permeability. Formulations containing 40 – 60 dry wt% Y-12 soil were fabricated and samples were prepared in triplicate for Environmental Protection Agency Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP) testing by an independent laboratory. Those containing 50 and 60 wt% soil easily met the study criteria for maximum allowable Hg concentrations (47 and 1 ppb, respectively compared with the TCLP limit of 200 ppb Hg). The lowest waste loading of 40 wt% yielded TCLP Hg concentrations slightly higher (240 ppb) than the allowable limit. Since the Y-12 soil tended to form clumps, the improved leaching at higher waste loadings was probably due to reduction in particle size

  16. REMOVAL OF MERCURY FROM CONTAMINATED SOILS AT THE PAVLODAR CHEMICAL PLANT.

    SciTech Connect

    KHRAPUNOV, V. YE.; ISAKOVA, R.A.; LEVINTOV, B.L.; KALB, P.D.; KAMBEROV, I.M.; TREBUKHOV, A.

    2004-09-25

    Soils beneath and adjacent to the Pavlodar Chemical Plant in Kazakhstan have been contaminated with elemental mercury as a result of chlor alkali processing using mercury cathode cell technology. The work described in this paper was conducted in preparation for a demonstration of a technology to remove the mercury from the contaminated soils using a vacuum assisted thermal distillation process. The process can operate at temperatures from 250-500 C and pressures of 0.13kPa-1.33kPa. Following vaporization, the mercury vapor is cooled, condensed and concentrated back to liquid elemental mercury. It will then be treated using the Sulfur Polymer Stabilization/Solidification process developed at Brookhaven National Laboratory as described in a companion paper at this conference. The overall project objectives include chemical and physical characterization of the contaminated soils, study of the influence of the soil's physical-chemical and hydro dynamical characteristics on process parameters, and laboratory testing to optimize the mercury sublimation rate when heating in vacuum. Based on these laboratory and pilot-scale data, a full-scale production process will be designed for testing. This paper describes the soil characterization. This work is being sponsored by the International Science and Technology Center.

  17. Effect of root metabolism on the post-depositional mobilization of mercury in salt marsh soils

    SciTech Connect

    Marins, R.V. |; Lacerda, L.D.; Goncalves, G.O.; Paiva, E.C. de

    1997-05-01

    Salt marsh soils are an efficient sink for trace metals associated with particulate material in tidal waters and have been proposed as monitors for trace metal contamination in coastal areas, on the basis that vertical profiles provide a record of loading rates. However, the complex nature of the biogeochemical processes occurring in these soils, may prevent this use, since post-depositional mobilization of some trace metals may occur, resulting in their release to pore water, vertical movement through the soil column and exchange with overlying waters. This paper presents and compares the vertical profiles of mercury in soil cores taken under a Spartina altermilflora marsh and in adjacent mod flats without plant cover to characterize the role played by this plant on the post-depositional movement of mercury through the soil and on the possibility of using such profiles as indicators of mercury loading rates in coastal areas. 19 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  18. Selenium modulates mercury uptake and distribution in rice (Oryza sativa L.), in correlation with mercury species and exposure level.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jiating; Li, Yufeng; Li, Yunyun; Gao, Yuxi; Li, Bai; Hu, Yi; Zhao, Yuliang; Chai, Zhifang

    2014-10-01

    Rice cultured in Hg- and/or Se-contaminated fields is an important food source of human Hg/Se intake. There are elevated Hg and Se levels in the soil of the Wanshan District, Guizhou Province. Here we attempted to explore how a Hg antagonist, Se, modulates the absorption and accumulation of inorganic mercury (IHg) and methylmercury (MeHg) in rice. The effects of Se on the content and transportation of Hg in hydroponic and soil cultured rice plants were examined. The results show that IHg mainly accumulated in the rice roots, but some also accumulated in the rice grain. In comparison to IHg, MeHg can be concentrated in the rice grain, and the proportion of MeHg in the rice grain may account for above 40% of the total Hg. Se can protect against Hg phytotoxicity in rice and inhibit IHg accumulation in rice tissues, but was not remarkable for MeHg at a low dosage exposure level in this study. These discrepancies imply mechanistic differences between IHg and MeHg absorption and accumulation in rice. This study illustrates that Se plays an important role in modulating Hg uptake, transportation and accumulation in rice. Therefore, Se is considered to be a naturally existing element that effectively reduces Hg accumulation in rice, which may have significant implications for food safety. PMID:25142173

  19. Processes influencing the emission of mercury from soils: A conceptual model

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, H.; Lindberg, S.E.

    1999-09-01

    In contrast to recent rapid growth in the field data on mercury flux over soils, our knowledge and understanding of the emission processes and controlling mechanisms still remains limited. Many processes could control emission of mercury from soils. The emission processes may involve both Hg(0) and Hg(II) pools, both homogeneous and heterogeneous distributions and reactions, and both dark and light processes. The physical and chemical controlling processes mainly involve (1) distribution of different mercury species among different soil phases, largely associated with adsorption and desorption of Hg(0) and Hg(II) species, and (2) mercury redox reactions in soils, some of which could be induced by sunlight, especially in the UV. The distribution (sorption versus desorption) of Hg(0) in soils could be the rate-limiting process in the case where Hg(0) is the dominant mercury pool, and the redox reactions could be rate-limiting in the case where Hg(II) is the major pool. Various hypothetical scenarios of Hg(0) and Hg(II) transformation in soils are discussed here. However, the specific processes that actually occur in soils under natural conditions are far from clear and need to be identified and quantified in future research.

  20. Biogeochemistry of mercury in soils and sediments in a mining-impacted watershed, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holloway, J. M.; Goldhaber, M. B.

    2004-12-01

    The East Davis Creek watershed, located in the California Coast Ranges, is host to historic mines that provided mercury for recovery of gold in the Sierra Nevada goldfields in the mid-to-late 1800s. Bedrock in this watershed includes marine sedimentary rock, serpentinite, and hydrothermally altered serpentinite. Cinnabar (HgS) found in the altered serpentinite is the primary ore mineral for mercury. We evaluated the hypothesis that mercury is sequestered in soil organic matter downstream from source areas, releasing a fraction as water-soluble methylmercury. Microbial biomass and the presence of sulfur-reducing bacteria implicated in mercury methylation were quantified using phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) data. Methylation incubations were performed on soil and sediment inoculated with water from Davis Creek Reservoir and sealed in glass containers under an anoxic headspace for 21 days. Methylmercury was measured on extracts of the soils at the start and at the end of the incubation period. Two sources of mercury to stream sediments, a soil with an altered serpentinite parent and mine tailings, were incubated. Stream sediment, an overbank deposit soil and a wetland soil forming from these sediments were also incubated. The overbank deposit soil is periodically flooded. The wetland soil around the edge of Davis Creek Reservoir is perennially saturated with water. The altered serpentinite soil and mine tailings had the highest total mercury concentrations (170 and 150 ng Hg /g, respectively). Total mercury concentrations in stream sediments are low (¡Ü1 ng Hg/g), with higher mercury concentrations in the overbank (3 ng/g) and wetland soils (18 ng Hg/g). Mercury leached from altered serpentinite soils and mine tailings may be transported downstream and sequestered through sorption to organic matter in the overbank and wetland soils. PLFA biomarkers for Desulfobacter (10Me16:0) and Desulfovibrio (i17:1) were present in all incubated materials, with lower

  1. Glutathione enzyme and selenoprotein polymorphisms associate with mercury biomarker levels in Michigan dental professionals.

    PubMed

    Goodrich, Jaclyn M; Wang, Yi; Gillespie, Brenda; Werner, Robert; Franzblau, Alfred; Basu, Niladri

    2011-12-01

    Mercury is a potent toxicant of concern to both the general public and occupationally exposed workers (e.g., dentists). Recent studies suggest that several genes mediating the toxicokinetics of mercury are polymorphic in humans and may influence inter-individual variability in mercury accumulation. This work hypothesizes that polymorphisms in key glutathione synthesizing enzyme, glutathione S-transferase, and selenoprotein genes underlie inter-individual differences in mercury body burden as assessed by analytical mercury measurement in urine and hair, biomarkers of elemental mercury and methylmercury, respectively. Urine and hair samples were collected from a population of dental professionals (n=515), and total mercury content was measured. Average urine (1.06±1.24 microg/L) and hair mercury levels (0.49±0.63 microg/g) were similar to national U.S. population averages. Taqman assays were used to genotype DNA from buccal swab samples at 15 polymorphic sites in genes implicated in mercury metabolism. Linear regression modeling assessed the ability of polymorphisms to modify the relationship between mercury biomarker levels and exposure sources (e.g., amalgams, fish consumption). Five polymorphisms were significantly associated with urine mercury levels (GSTT1 deletion), hair mercury levels (GSTP1-105, GSTP1-114, GSS 5'), or both (SEPP1 3'UTR). Overall, this study suggests that polymorphisms in selenoproteins and glutathione-related genes may influence elimination of mercury in the urine and hair or mercury retention following exposures to elemental mercury (via dental amalgams) and methylmercury (via fish consumption). PMID:21967774

  2. Mercury Fractionation in Superficial Sediment and Paddy Soil Samples from Tianjin, Northern China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Chao; Zhang, Zhaoji; Fei, Yuhong; Wu, Guoqing; Qian, Yong

    2016-08-01

    Sediment and soil samples from the Beitang River (BR) and the Haihe River (HR) in Tianjin were analyzed to investigate the extent of mercury contamination. The results show that total mercury (THg) contents in the BR and HR sediments were 2241 ± 1024 and 653 ± 450 ng g(-1), and THg in rice paddy soils were 907 ± 345 and 328 ± 286 ng g(-1), respectively. Industrial and domestic sewage were regarded as the main sources of mercury in the two river basins. Sediment-bound mercury in the BR and the HR were found to be predominantly associated with the organic-bound fraction (55 %) and residual fraction and (54 %), while soil-bound mercury was mainly in organic-bound fraction in paddy soils (61 % and 57 %, respectively). The availability of this element (soluble and exchangeable and specifically sorbed fraction) seemed restricted, but significantly higher in the paddy soils than in sediments. Higher soluble and exchangeable, specifically sorbed fraction and organic-bound fraction may promote the higher toxic methylmercury and bioavailable fraction formation in the soils during the rice cultivation. PMID:27283074

  3. Monitoring of arsenic, boron and mercury by lichen and soil analysis in the Mt. Amiata geothermal area (central Italy)

    SciTech Connect

    Loppi, S.

    1997-12-31

    Epiphytic lichens and top-soils from the Mt. Amiata geothermal field (central Italy) were analyzed for their As, B and Hg content. Three areas were selected: (1) Abbadia S. Salvatore, where a large Hg mine with smelting and roasting plant was located; (2) Piancastagnaio, where there are geothermal power plants; (3) a remote site far from mines and geothermal power plants. The results showed that the geothermal power plants do not represent a macroscopic source of arsenic and boron contamination in the area. As far as mercury is concerned, at the Hg mining area of Abbadia S. Salvatore concentrations were extremely high both in soil and epiphytic lichens, and the anomalous content in these organisms was due to the uptake of elemental mercury originating from soil degassing. At the geothermal area of Piancastagnaio, soil mercury was not different from that in the control area, but Hg in lichens was almost twice the control levels, suggesting that the gaseous emissions from the geothermal power plants are an important source of air contamination.

  4. Mercury in soils and plants in an abandoned cinnabar mining area (SW Spain).

    PubMed

    García-Sánchez, A; Murciego, A; Alvarez-Ayuso, E; Regina, I Santa; Rodríguez-González, M A

    2009-09-15

    An abandoned cinnabar mining area located in the South-West of Spain has been studied with the aim of assessing its mercury pollution level and enhancing the knowledge about the Hg soil/plant relationship. To do so, soils and plants were sampled near an inactive smelter and around two mining sites present in this area. Critical total Hg concentrations were found in the close environs of pollutant sources. These also show high levels of elemental Hg (up to 8 mg kg(-1)), but quite low exchangeable Hg contents (0.008-0.038 mg kg(-1)). Most plant specimens display in their aboveground tissues Hg concentrations comprised in the range 0.1-10 mg kg(-1), with a great proportion (50%) showing critical levels. Greater Hg contents were found in plant specimens growing in soils with higher elemental Hg concentrations. The plant species displaying the greatest Hg levels are either perennial species of small-medium size and/or showing medium-highly corrugated leaves, or annual plants of small size. Marrubium vulgare L., Bromus madritensis L. and Trifolium angustifolium L. are the plant species with the highest Hg contents (37.6, 12.7 and 9.0 mg kg(-1), respectively). Leaf specific surface seems an important feature in the atmospheric Hg uptake by plants. PMID:19345007

  5. Relationship between dietary mercury intake and blood mercury level in Korea.

    PubMed

    You, Chang-Hun; Kim, Byoung-Gwon; Kim, Yu-Mi; Lee, Sang-Ah; Kim, Rock-Bum; Seo, Jeong-Wook; Hong, Young-Seoub

    2014-02-01

    This study was performed to evaluate the effect of dietary factors for mercury exposure by comparing with blood mercury concentration. Study population consisted of 1,866 adults (839 men and 1,027 women) in randomly-selected 30 districts in southeast Korea. Dietary mercury intake was calculated from food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) on seafood items and 24 hr recall record. Blood mercury concentration was measured with atomic absorption spectrometry. Mean age of the subjects was 43.5 ± 14.6 yr. The FFQ showed that mercury-laden fish (tuna, shark) and frequently-eating fish (squid, belt fish, mackerel) were important in mercury intake from fish species. The recall record suggested that fish and shellfish was a highest group (63.1%) of mercury intake and had a wide distribution in the food groups. In comparison with the blood mercury concentration, age group, sex, household income, education, drinking status and coastal area were statistically significant (P < 0.001). In multiple regression analysis, coefficient from the FFQ (β = 0.003) had greater effect on the blood mercury than the recall record (β = 0.002), but the effect was restricted (adjusted R(2) = 0.234). Further studies with more precise estimation of dietary mercury intake were required to evaluate the risk for mercury exposure by foods and assure risk communication with heavily-exposed group. PMID:24550642

  6. Inhalation uptake of low level elemental mercury vapor and its tissue distribution in rats

    SciTech Connect

    Oberski, S.P.; Fang, S.C.

    1980-07-01

    Elemental mercury vapor is the major component of mercury found in the atmosphere. Furthermore, if usage of coal is increased to meet the energy demand, then atmospheric levels of mercury are expected to rise. Current atmospheric concentrations of mercury vapor over select urban areas of the United States range from 0.5 to 50 ng m/sup -3/ with a mean of 7 ng m/sup -3/. Mercury concentration in brain tissue following inhalation of elemental mercury is significantly higher than those from intravenous injection or oral administration of either organic or ionic mercurials. Although elemental mercury is rapidly oxidized in the blood to the less diffusable mercuric ion, the transient occurrence of elemental mercury in the blood stream and the increased levels detected in the central nervous system are likely a result of its rapid diffusion into target tissues. This study reports the inhalation uptake and consequent tissue distribution of radioactive elemental mercury vapor in rats over a concentration range of 15 to 916 ng m/sup -3/, with particular emphasis on measurement below 50 ng m/sup -3/, in an effort to determine if the tissue distribution of mercury after a low level exposure is similar to those reported using higher concentrations.

  7. Total and methyl mercury levels in wild mammals from the PreCambrian Shield area of south central Ontario, Canada

    SciTech Connect

    Wren, C.; MacCrimmon, H.; Frank, R.; Suda, P.

    1980-07-01

    It has been established that elevated mercury levels in fish occur in areas remote from recognized point sources of mercury contamination. It may be expected, therefore, that mercury levels may also be accumulated through natural processes in wild mammals inhabiting those areas. A process for demethylating organic mercury to less toxic inorganic mercury has been suggested in some marine mammals exposed to high mercury levls. It is possible that similar demethylating process exists in terrestial mammals which are exposed to elevated levels of mercury in their diet. Natural mercury levels in fish have been reported in the PreCambrian Shield of the Muskoka District. The present paper compares total and methyl mercury levels occurring in various organs of wilder beaver, raccoon and otter representing herbivorous, omnivorous and carnivorous life styles, collected from the same general area where substantial mercury levels are known to occur in fish.

  8. Hg contents in soils and olive-tree (Olea Europea, L.) leaves from an area affected by elemental mercury pollution (Jódar, SE Spain).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-Berdonces, Miguel Angel; María Esbrí, José; Amorós, José Angel; Lorenzo, Saturnino; Fernández-Calderón, Sergio; Higueras, Pablo; Perez-de-los-Reyes, Caridad

    2014-05-01

    Data from soil and olive tree leaves around a decommissioned chlor-alkali plant are presented in this communication. The factory was active in the period 1977-1991, producing during these years a heavily pollution of Guadalquivir River and hydrargyrism in more than local 45 workers. It is located at 7 km South of Jódar, a locality with some 12,120 inhabitants. Mercury usage was general in this type of plants, but at present it is being replaced by other types of technologies, due to the risks of mercury usage in personal and environment. A soil geochemistry survey was carried out in the area, along with the analysis of olive-tree leaves (in the plots with this culture) from the same area. 73 soil samples were taken at two different depths (0-15 cm and 15-30 cm), together with 41 olive tree samples. Mercury content of geologic and biologic samples was determined by means of Atomic Absorption Spectrometry with Zeeman Effect, using a Lumex RA-915+ device with the RP-91C pyrolysis attachment. Air surveys were carried our using a RA-915M Lumex portable analytical device. Soil mercury contents were higher in topsoil than in the deeper soil samples, indicating that incorporation of mercury was due to dry and wet deposition of mercury vapors emitted from the plant. Average content in topsoil is 564.5 ng g-1. Hg contents in olive-tree leaves were in the range 46 - 453 ng g-1, with an average of 160.6 ng g-1. This level is slightly lower than tolerable level for agronomic crops established by Kabata-Pendias (2001) in 200 ng g-1. We have also compared soil and leaf contents for each sampling site, finding a positive and significant correlation (R=0.49), indicating that Hg contents in the leaves are linked to Hg contents in the soils. BAC (Bioaccumulation Absorption Coefficient, calculated as ratio between soil and leaf concentration) is 0.28 (consistent with world references, BAC = 0.7), considered "medium" in comparison with other mineral elements. Main conclusions of this

  9. Mercury flux from naturally enriched bare soils during simulated cold weather cycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walters, Nicholas E.; Glassford, Shannon M.; Van Heyst, Bill J.

    2016-03-01

    Elemental mercury flux released from terrestrial surfaces is a critical area of research due to mercury's potent toxicity and persistency on a global scale. However, there is significant uncertainty surrounding mercury flux in colder environments. The objective of this research was to investigate and identify the potential mechanisms responsible for the release of elemental mercury flux from bare soils in cold weather temperature cycling under simulated laboratory conditions. Seasonal cycling scenarios, including freeze-thaw and sub-zero, were utilized to simulate Fall, Winter, and Spring. The results for both freeze-thaw and sub-zero cycles indicated that there are separate and distinct mechanisms present that promote elemental mercury flux at temperatures below 0°C. During the freeze-thaw cycles, the amount of flux released was linked to the amount of energy leaving and entering the system, respectively. During the sub-zero cycles, flux spikes were produced by the thin surface layer of soil and corresponded to air temperature minimums rather than soil temperature minimums. This rapid drop in temperature was speculated to force mercury from the ice structure, due to further freezing of the liquid water content, increasing the mercury concentration within the remaining water and creating a pathway that encourages volatilization to the atmosphere. This was not observed in the thin layer clean soil trials. Additionally, as the soil water content approached a field capacity of approximately 20%, the flux pattern was suppressed during freeze-thaw cycles, as the number of available interstitial pore spaces decreased. However, this pattern was not observed during sub-zero cycling, as the largest response was triggered with the highest water content.

  10. The Effect of Fish Consumption on Blood Mercury Levels of Pregnant Women

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Euy Hyuk; Kwon, Ja Young; Kim, Sang Wun; Park, Yong Won

    2006-01-01

    In the present study, we examined the relationship between average fish consumption, as well as the type of fish consumed and levels of mercury in the blood of pregnant women. We also performed follow-up studies to determine if blood mercury levels were decreased after counseling and prenatal education. To examine these potential relationships, pregnant women were divided into two groups: a study group was educated to restrict fish intake, whereas a control group did not receive any prenatal education regarding fish consumption. We measured blood mercury level and performed follow-up studies during the third trimester to examine any differences between the two groups. Out of the 63 pregnant women who participated in our study, we performed follow-up studies with 19 pregnant women from the study group and 12 pregnant women from control group. The average initial blood mercury level of both groups was 2.94 µg/L, with a range of 0.14 to 10.75 µg/L. Blood mercury level in the group who ate fish more than four times per month was significantly higher than that of the group who did not consume fish (p = 0.02). In follow-up studies, blood mercury levels were decreased in the study group but slightly increased in the control group (p = 0.014). The maternal blood mercury level in late pregnancy was positively correlated with mercury levels of cord blood (r = 0.58, p = 0.047), which was almost twice the level found in maternal blood. Pregnant women who consume a large amount of fish may have high blood mercury levels. Further, cord blood mercury levels were much higher than that of maternal blood. Because the level of fish intake appears to influence blood mercury level, preconceptual education might be necessary in order decrease fish consumption. PMID:17066506

  11. [Accumulation of Mercury in Soil-maize System of Non-ferrous Metals Smelting Area and Its Related Risk Assessment].

    PubMed

    Ji, Xiao-feng; Zheng, Na; Wang, Yang; Liu, Qiang; Zhang, Jing-jing

    2015-10-01

    Soil heavy metal pollution, especially the mercury pollution, has been widespread concern in non-ferrous metallurgical area. This study focused on the content, distribution and pollution status of Hg in maize soil of Huludao city. Meanwhile, Hg contents in the various organs of maize were analyzed. Hg concentration in soil ranged from 0.25 to 3.49 mg x kg(-1) with the average content of 1.78 mg x kg(-1), which was 48 times as high as the background value of Liaoning soil. Around 2-3m range of zinc plant, the pattern of spatial distribution showed that the content of Hg was gradually increased with the increase of the distance to Huludao zinc plant. The result of geoaccumulation index reflected that Hg pollution is up to moderate pollution level on the whole. 54. 6% of the total sample were belonged to the serious pollution level. The potential ecological risk index of Hakanson was applied to assess the ecological risk of Hg. The target hazard quotient method (THQ) was used to assess the health risk for human, the results revealed that there was no significant health risk by consumption corn. Mercury is very difficult to transport in soil-maize system, and there is no obvious health risks to adults. But the risk coefficient of children, which is up to 0.056. is much higher than adults. PMID:26841621

  12. Association of food consumption during pregnancy with mercury and lead levels in cord blood.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jin Hee; Lee, Su Jin; Kim, Su Young; Choi, Gyuyeon; Lee, Jeong Jae; Kim, Hai-Joong; Kim, Sungjoo; Park, Jeongim; Moon, Hyo-Bang; Choi, Kyungho; Kim, Sungkyoon; Choi, Soo Ran

    2016-09-01

    In utero exposure to mercury and lead has been linked to various adverse health effects related to growth and development. However, there was no evidence on the relationship between food consumption during pregnancy and mercury or lead level in cord blood. Therefore we measured mercury and lead levels in bloods, urines, and cord bloods obtained from 302 pregnant women and estimated relationships between food consumption during pregnancy and mercury or lead level in cord blood to identify perinatal mercury and lead exposures originated from foods during pregnancy. Relationship between food consumption and mercury or lead level was estimated using a generalized linear model after adjustment for body mass index (BMI), delivery experience, income, recruitment year, and other dietary factors for mercury and age, BMI, cesarean section, delivery experience, recruitment year, and other dietary factors for lead. Fish consumption was positively associated with mercury level in cord blood (p=0.0135), while cereal and vegetable consumptions were positively associated with lead level in cord blood (p=0.0517 for cereal and p=0.0504 for vegetable). Furthermore, tea consumption restrained increase of lead level in cord blood (p=0.0014). Our findings support that mercury or lead exposure in Korean pregnant women may come from frequent fish and cereal or vegetable consumption while tea consumption may decrease lead exposure in pregnant women. Therefore, careful intervention through food consumption should be considered. PMID:27135573

  13. USEPA'S RESEARCH PROGRAM ON REMEDIATION AND CONTAINMENT OF ARSENIC AND MERCURY IN SOILS, INDUSTRIAL WASTES, AND GROUNDWATER

    EPA Science Inventory

    In the U.S. and around the world, mercury and arsenic contaminated soils, industrial wastes, and groundwater are difficult to effectively and cheaply remediate and contain. Mercury is a serious health concern and has been identified as a contaminant in the air, soil, sediment, su...

  14. The sorption characteristics of mercury as affected by organic matter content and/or soil properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Šípková, Adéla; Šillerová, Hana; Száková, Jiřina

    2014-05-01

    The determination and description of the mercury sorption extend on soil is significant for potential environmental toxic effects. The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of mercury sorption at different soil samples and vermicomposts. Mercury interactions with soil organic matter were studied using three soils with different physical-chemical properties - fluvisol, cambisol, and chernozem. Moreover, three different vermicomposts based on various bio-waste materials with high organic matter content were prepared in special fermentors. First was a digestate, second was represented by a mixture of bio-waste from housing estate and woodchips, and third was a garden bio-waste. In the case of vermicompost, the fractionation of organic matter was executed primarily using the resin SuperliteTM DAX-8. Therefore, the representation of individual fractions (humic acid, fulvic acid, hydrophilic compounds, and hydrophobic neutral organic matter) was known. The kinetics of mercury sorption onto materials of interest was studied by static sorption experiments. Samples were exposed to the solution with known Hg concentration of 12 mg kg-1 for the time from 10 minutes to 24 hours. Mercury content in the solutions was measured by the inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Based on this data, the optimum conditions for following sorption experiments were chosen. Subsequently, the batch sorption tests for all soil types and vermicomposts were performed in solution containing variable mercury concentrations between 1 and 12 mg kg-1. Equilibrium concentration values measured in the solution after sorption and calculated mercury content per kilogram of the soil or the vermi-compost were plotted. Two basic models of sorption isotherm - Langmuir and Freundlich, were used for the evaluation of the mercury sorption properties. The results showed that the best sorption properties from studied soil were identified in chernozem with highest cation exchange

  15. Effects of low dietary levels of methyl mercury on mallard reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Heinz, G.

    1974-01-01

    Mallard ducks were fed a control diet or a diet containing 0.5 ppm or 3 ppm mercury (as methylmercury dicyandiamide). Health of adults and reproductive success were studied. The dietary level of 3 ppm mercury had harmful effects on reproduction, although it did not appear to affect the health of the adults during the 12 months of dosage. Ducks that were fed the diet containing 0.5 ppm mercury reproduced as well as controls, and ducklings from parents fed 0.5 ppm mercury grew faster in the first week of life than did controls....The greatest harm to reproduction associated with the diet containing 3 ppm mercury was an increase in duckling mortality, but reduced egg laying and increased embryonic mortality also occurred....During the peak of egg laying, eggs laid by controls tended to be heavier than eggs laid by ducks fed either level of mercury; however, there seemed to be no eggshell thinning associated with mercury treatment. Levels of mercury reached about 1 ppm in eggs from ducks fed a dietary dosage of 0.5 ppm mercury and between 6 and 9 ppm in the eggs from ducks fed 3 ppm mercury.

  16. Gaseous mercury emissions from unsterilized and sterilized soils: the effect of temperature and UV radiation.

    PubMed

    Choi, Hyun-Deok; Holsen, Thomas M

    2009-05-01

    Mercury (Hg) emissions from the soils taken from two different sites (deciduous and coniferous forests) in the Adirondacks were measured in outdoor and laboratory experiments. Some of the soil samples were irradiated to eliminate biological activity. The result from the outdoor measurements with different soils suggests the Hg emission from the soils is partly limited by fallen leaves covering the soils which helps maintain relatively high soil moisture and limits the amount of heat and solar radiation reaching the soil surface. In laboratory experiments exposure to UV-A (365 nm) had no significant effect on the Hg emissions while the Hg emissions increased dramatically during exposure to UV-B (302 nm) light suggesting UV-B directly reduced soil-associated Hg. Overall these results indicate that for these soils biotic processes have a relatively constant and smaller influence on the Hg emission from the soil than the more variable abiotic processes. PMID:19155110

  17. Spatial variability of mercury emissions from soils in a southeastern US urban environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabriel, Mark C.; Williamson, Derek G.; Brooks, Steve; Zhang, Hong; Lindberg, Steve

    2005-10-01

    We quantified gaseous mercury (Hg0) fluxes over soil surfaces in an urban setting during the winters of 2003 and 2004 across the metropolitan area of Tuscaloosa, AL. The objective was to provide a first inspection of the local spatial variability of mercury flux in an urban area. Flux sampling took place on bare, undisturbed, soil surfaces within four evenly spaced landuse areas of Tuscaloosa: industrial, commercial, residential, and mixed landuse. Median total gaseous mercury fluxes (ng/m2 h) from each site were as follows: 4.45 (residential site), 1.40 (industrial site), 2.14 (commercial site), and 0.87 (mixed landuse site). Using non-parametric statistical analyses, the residential and mixed landuse sites were found to be statistically different from the overall median flux. Landuse and soil type are the suspected factors primarily controlling the observed spatially variable fluxes. The presence of statistically different fluxes over soil surfaces on a local scale in this preliminary study warrants additional investigation, particularly during the spring and summer seasons when terrestrial mercury emission is the highest. Providing such information will help develop better estimates of mercury emission from urban areas and, ultimately, lead to more accurate and useful spatially relevant inventories.

  18. Mercury

    MedlinePlus

    ... be found in: Batteries Chemistry labs Some disinfectants Folk remedies Red cinnabar mineral Organic mercury can be ... heart tracing Fluids through a vein (by IV) Medicine to treat symptoms The type of exposure will ...

  19. An evaluation of mercury levels in Louisiana fish: trends and public health issues.

    PubMed

    Katner, Adrienne; Sun, Mei-Hung; Suffet, Mel

    2010-11-01

    To characterize statewide fish tissue mercury levels in edible finfish the first comprehensive analysis of Louisiana's fish tissue mercury database was conducted. Analyses were based on fifteen years of fish tissue mercury data collected from 368 waterbodies between 1994 and 2008 (n=14,344). The overall objectives of this study were to establish baseline fish tissue mercury levels; and evaluate species-specific temporal and spatial trends in fish tissue mercury levels. Fish tissue mercury levels ranged from 0.001 ppm (the detection limit) to 5.904 ppm for king mackerel; with an overall geometric mean of 0.218 ppm. Ninety-five percent of samples had mercury levels below the FDA's action level of 1.0 ppm for methylmercury in commercial food. Forty-four percent of all samples had mercury levels above the U.S. EPA's methylmercury fish tissue criterion of 0.3 ppm for sportfish. Species of potential concern include cobia, king mackerel, blackfin tuna, greater amberjack, spotted bass, bowfin, largemouth bass and freshwater drum. There was a significant but small decline in statewide length-adjusted largemouth bass mercury levels between 1994-1999 to 2003-2008 (p<0.05). The highest fish mercury levels were observed in Pearl, Calcasieu, Mermentau, Ouachita, Pontchartrain and Sabine basins. Length-adjusted largemouth bass mercury levels were significantly higher in wetlands and rivers/streams vs. lakes; and in wetlands vs. estuaries (p<0.05). Data were analyzed from a public health perspective to make recommendations for optimizing monitoring and outreach. PMID:20855108

  20. The influence of depth on mercury levels in pelagic fishes and their prey.

    PubMed

    Choy, C Anela; Popp, Brian N; Kaneko, J John; Drazen, Jeffrey C

    2009-08-18

    Mercury distribution in the oceans is controlled by complex biogeochemical cycles, resulting in retention of trace amounts of this metal in plants and animals. Inter- and intra-specific variations in mercury levels of predatory pelagic fish have been previously linked to size, age, trophic position, physical and chemical environmental parameters, and location of capture; however, considerable variation remains unexplained. In this paper, we focus on differences in ecology, depth of occurrence, and total mercury levels in 9 species of commercially important pelagic fish (Thunnus obesus, T. albacares, Katsuwonus pelamis, Xiphias gladius, Lampris guttatus, Coryphaena hippurus, Taractichthys steindachneri, Tetrapturus audax, and Lepidocybium flavobrunneum) and in numerous representatives (fishes, squids, and crustaceans) of their lower trophic level prey sampled from the central North Pacific Ocean. Results indicate that total mercury levels of predatory pelagic fishes and their prey increase with median depth of occurrence in the water column and mimic concentrations of dissolved organic mercury in seawater. Stomach content analysis results from this study and others indicate a greater occurrence of higher-mercury containing deeper-water prey organisms in the diets of the deeper-ranging predators, X. gladius, T. obesus, and L. guttatus. While present in trace amounts, dissolved organic mercury increases with depth in the water column suggesting that the mesopelagic habitat is a major entry point for mercury into marine food webs. These data suggest that a major determinant of mercury levels in oceanic predators is their depth of forage. PMID:19666614

  1. Mercury transformation and release differs with depth and time in a contaminated riparian soil during simulated flooding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poulin, Brett A.; Aiken, George R.; Nagy, Kathryn L.; Manceau, Alain; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Ryan, Joseph N.

    2016-03-01

    Riparian soils are an important environment in the transport of mercury in rivers and wetlands, but the biogeochemical factors controlling mercury dynamics under transient redox conditions in these soils are not well understood. Mercury release and transformations in the Oa and underlying A horizons of a contaminated riparian soil were characterized in microcosms and an intact soil core under saturation conditions. Pore water dynamics of total mercury (HgT), methylmercury (MeHg), and dissolved gaseous mercury (Hg0(aq)) along with selected anions, major elements, and trace metals were characterized across redox transitions during 36 d of flooding in microcosms. Next, HgT dynamics were characterized over successive flooding (17 d), drying (28 d), and flooding (36 d) periods in the intact core. The observed mercury dynamics exhibit depth and temporal variability. At the onset of flooding in microcosms (1-3 d), mercury in the Oa horizon soil, present as a combination of ionic mercury (Hg(II)) bound to thiol groups in the soil organic matter (SOM) and nanoparticulate metacinnabar (β-HgS), was mobilized with organic matter of high molecular weight. Subsequently, under anoxic conditions, pore water HgT declined coincident with sulfate (3-11 d) and the proportion of nanoparticulate β-HgS in the Oa horizon soil increased slightly. Redox oscillations in the intact Oa horizon soil exhausted the mobile mercury pool associated with organic matter. In contrast, mercury in the A horizon soil, present predominantly as nanoparticulate β-HgS, was mobilized primarily as Hg0(aq) under strongly reducing conditions (5-18 d). The concentration of Hg0(aq) under dark reducing conditions correlated positively with byproducts of dissimilatory metal reduction (∑(Fe,Mn)). Mercury dynamics in intact A horizon soil were consistent over two periods of flooding, indicating that nanoparticulate β-HgS was an accessible pool of mobile mercury over recurrent reducing conditions. The

  2. Volcanism and soil mercury on Mars - Consequences for terrestrial microorganisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siegel, B. Z.; Siegel, S. M.

    1978-01-01

    An earth-Mars depletion formula proposed by Anders and Owen for volatiles is used to calculate a range of putative Hg levels for Martian volcanic soils based upon analyzed samples from Hawaii. The range is about 50-150 microgram per kg. When applied either in conventional or special media (e.g., basalt powder), these levels of Hg are effective inhibitors of the growth of earth microorganisms. Taken together with other hostile chemical and physical factors, volcanic toxicants would appear to provide a further deterrent to the accidental establishment of terrestrial microbiota on Mars.

  3. A Simple Approach for Measuring Emission Patterns of Vapor Phase Mercury under Temperature-Controlled Conditions from Soil

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Ki-Hyun; Yoon, Hye-On; Jung, Myung-Chae; Oh, Jong-Min; Brown, Richard J. C.

    2012-01-01

    In an effort to study the possible effects of climate change on the behavior of atmospheric mercury (Hg), we built a temperature–controlled microchamber system to measure its emission from top soils. To this end, mercury vapour emission rates were investigated in the laboratory using top soil samples collected from an urban area. The emissions of Hg, when measured as a function of soil temperature (from ambient levels up to 70°C at increments of 10°C), showed a positive correlation with rising temperature. According to the continuous analyses of the Hg vapor given off by the identical soil samples, evasion rate diminished noticeably with increasing number of repetitions. The experimental results, if examined in terms of activation energy (Ea), showed highly contrasting patterns between the single and repetitive runs. Although the results of the former exhibited Ea values smaller than the vaporization energy of Hg (i.e., <14 Kcal mol−1), those of the latter increased systematically with increasing number of repetitions. As such, it is proposed that changes in the magnitude of Ea values can be used as a highly sensitive criterion to discriminate the important role of vaporization from other diverse (biotic/abiotic) processes occurring in the soil layer. PMID:22927791

  4. Mercury in wild mushrooms and underlying soil substrate from Koszalin, North-central Poland.

    PubMed

    Falandysz, Jerzy; Jedrusiak, Aneta; Lipka, Krzysztof; Kannan, Kurunthachalam; Kawano, Masahide; Gucia, Magdalena; Brzostowski, Andrzej; Dadej, Monika

    2004-01-01

    Concentrations of total mercury were determined by cold-vapour atomic absorption spectroscopy (CV-AAS) in 221 caps and 221 stalks of 15 species of wild growing higher fungi/mushrooms and 221 samples of corresponding soil substrate collected in 1997-98 in Manowo County, near the city of Koszalin in North-central Poland. Mean mercury concentrations in caps and stalks of the mushroom species examined and soils varied between 30+/-31 and 920+/-280, 17+/-11 and 560+/-220, and 10+/-9 and 170+/-110 ng/g dry matter, respectively. Cap to stalk mercury concentration quotients were from 1.0+/-0.4 in poison pax (Paxillus involutus) to 2.8+/-0.7 in slippery jack (Suillus luteus). Brown cort (Cortinarius malicorius), fly agaric (Amanita muscaria), orange-brown ringless amanita (A. fulva), red-aspen bolete (Leccinum rufum) and mutagen milk cap (Lactarius necator) contained the highest concentrations of mercury both in caps and stalks, and mean concentrations varied between 600+/-750 and 920+/-280 and 370+/-470 and 560+/-220 ng/g dry matter, respectively. An estimate of daily intake of mercury from mushroom consumption indicated that the flesh of edible species of mushrooms may not pose hazards to human health even at a maximum consumption rate of 28 g/day. However, it should be noted that mercury intake from other foods will augment the daily intake rates. Species such as the sickener (Russula emetica), Geranium-scented russula (R. fellea) and poison pax (P. involutus) did not concentrate mercury as evidenced from the bioconcentration factors (BCFs: concentrations in mushroom/concentration in soil substrate), which were less than 1. Similarly, red-hot milk cap (L. rufus), rickstone funnel cap (Clitocybe geotropa) and European cow bolete (S. bovinus) were observed to be weak accumulators of mercury. Fly agaric (A. muscaria) accumulated great concentrations of mercury with BCFs reaching 73+/-42 and 38+/-22 in caps and stalks, respectively. Mercury BCFs of between 4.0+/-2.3 and 23

  5. [Characteristics of mercury pollution in soil and atmosphere in Songhua River upstream Jia-pi-gou gold mining area].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Gang; Wang, Ning; Wang, Yuan; Liu, Te; Ai, Jian-Chao

    2012-09-01

    In the studied area of Jia-pi-gou at the upstream area of Songhua River, algamation process has been applied as a dominant method to extract gold for more than one hundred and eighty years, resulting in severe mercury environmental pollution. The total mercury contents in the atmosphere and soil have been determined by mercury analyzer (Zeeman RA915+) and cold atomic absorption spectrophotometry (GB/T 17136-1997), respectively. To study the pollution characteristics of mercury in the soil and atmosphere, the mercury flux at the interface between the soil and the atmosphere of 4 sampling sites Lao-jin-chang, Er-dao-gou, Er-dao-cha and community of Jia-pi-gou have been determined with the method of dynamic flux chamber. Furthermore, linear regression analyses on the total mercury contents between soil and atmosphere have been carried out and the correlation coefficient of mercury exchange flux between soil and atmosphere and meteorological factors has been studied. The results are as follows: (1) The mean value of mercury content in the atmosphere is (71.08 +/- 38.22) ng x m(-3). (2) The mean value of mercury content in the soil is (0.913 1 +/- 0.040 8) mg x kg(-1); it shows remarkably positive correlation between the mercury contents in soil and in the atmosphere. (3) The mercury exchange flux between soil and atmosphere in different locations are Lao-jin-chang [(129.13 +/- 496.07) ng (m2 x h)(-1)], Er-dao-gou [(98.64 +/- 43.96) ng x (m2 x h)(-1)], Er-dao-cha [(23.17 +/- 171.23) ng x (m2 x h)(-1)], and community of Jia-pi-gou [(7.12 +/- 46.33) ng x (m2 x h)(-1)]. (4) Solar radiation is the major influential factor in the mercury exchange flux between the soil and atmosphere in Lao-jin-chang, Er-dao-cha and community of Jia-pi-gou. Solar radiation, air temperature and soil temperature jointly influence the process of the mercury exchange flux between the soil and atmosphere in Er-dao-gou. Under the disturbance of terrain, three noticeably distinctive trend features

  6. Mercury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, G. J.; Scott, E. R. D.

    2003-12-01

    Mercury is an important part of the solar system puzzle, yet we know less about it than any other planet, except Pluto. Mercury is the smallest of the terrestrial planets (0.05 Earth masses) and the closest to the Sun. Its relatively high density (5.4 g cm -3) indicates that it has a large metallic core (˜3/4 of the planet's radius) compared to its silicate mantle and crust. The existence of a magnetic field implies that the metallic core is still partly molten. The surface is heavily cratered like the highlands of the Moon, but some areas are smooth and less cratered, possibly like the lunar maria (but not as dark). Its surface composition, as explained in the next section, appears to be low in FeO (only ˜3 wt.%), which implies that either its crust is anorthositic (Jeanloz et al., 1995) or its mantle is similarly low in FeO ( Robinson and Taylor, 2001).The proximity of Mercury to the Sun is particularly important. In one somewhat outmoded view of how the solar system formed, Mercury was assembled in the hottest region close to the Sun so that virtually all of the iron was in the metallic state, rather than oxidized to FeO (e.g., Lewis, 1972, 1974). If correct, Mercury ought to have relatively a low content of FeO. This hypothesis also predicts that Mercury should have high concentrations of refractory elements, such as calcium, aluminum, and thorium, and low concentrations of volatile elements, such as sodium and potassium, compared to the other terrestrial planets.Alternative hypotheses tell a much more nomadic and dramatic story of Mercury's birth. In one alternative view, wandering planetesimals that might have come from as far away as Mars or the inner asteroid belt accreted to form Mercury (Wetherill, 1994). This model predicts higher FeO and volatile elements than does the high-temperature model, and similar compositions among the terrestrial planets. The accretion process might have been accompanied by a monumental impact that stripped away much of the

  7. Unified Science Information Model for SoilSCAPE using the Mercury Metadata Search System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devarakonda, Ranjeet; Lu, Kefa; Palanisamy, Giri; Cook, Robert; Santhana Vannan, Suresh; Moghaddam, Mahta Clewley, Dan; Silva, Agnelo; Akbar, Ruzbeh

    2013-12-01

    SoilSCAPE (Soil moisture Sensing Controller And oPtimal Estimator) introduces a new concept for a smart wireless sensor web technology for optimal measurements of surface-to-depth profiles of soil moisture using in-situ sensors. The objective is to enable a guided and adaptive sampling strategy for the in-situ sensor network to meet the measurement validation objectives of spaceborne soil moisture sensors such as the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission. This work is being carried out at the University of Michigan, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Southern California, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. At Oak Ridge National Laboratory we are using Mercury metadata search system [1] for building a Unified Information System for the SoilSCAPE project. This unified portal primarily comprises three key pieces: Distributed Search/Discovery; Data Collections and Integration; and Data Dissemination. Mercury, a Federally funded software for metadata harvesting, indexing, and searching would be used for this module. Soil moisture data sources identified as part of this activity such as SoilSCAPE and FLUXNET (in-situ sensors), AirMOSS (airborne retrieval), SMAP (spaceborne retrieval), and are being indexed and maintained by Mercury. Mercury would be the central repository of data sources for cal/val for soil moisture studies and would provide a mechanism to identify additional data sources. Relevant metadata from existing inventories such as ORNL DAAC, USGS Clearinghouse, ARM, NASA ECHO, GCMD etc. would be brought in to this soil-moisture data search/discovery module. The SoilSCAPE [2] metadata records will also be published in broader metadata repositories such as GCMD, data.gov. Mercury can be configured to provide a single portal to soil moisture information contained in disparate data management systems located anywhere on the Internet. Mercury is able to extract, metadata systematically from HTML pages or XML files using a variety of

  8. An Assessment of health risk associated with mercury in soil and sediment from East Fork Poplar Creek, Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Revis, N.; Holdsworth, G.; Bingham, G.; King, A.; Elmore, J.

    1989-04-01

    This report presents results from a study conducted to determine the toxicity of Mercury in soils sediments samples. Mice were fed via diet, soils and sediment, from various locations along the East Fork Poplar creek. Tissue distribution of pollutants was determined at various intervals. The tissue level relative to toxicity was used to determine the effect of a complex matrix on the gastrointestinal absorption and tissue distribution of the pollutants (other pollutants included cadmium and selenium).

  9. Gaseous mercury fluxes from forest soils in response to forest harvesting intensity: a field manipulation experiment.

    PubMed

    Mazur, M; Mitchell, C P J; Eckley, C S; Eggert, S L; Kolka, R K; Sebestyen, S D; Swain, E B

    2014-10-15

    Forest harvesting leads to changes in soil moisture, temperature and incident solar radiation, all strong environmental drivers of soil-air mercury (Hg) fluxes. Whether different forest harvesting practices significantly alter Hg fluxes from forest soils is unknown. We conducted a field-scale experiment in a northern Minnesota deciduous forest wherein gaseous Hg emissions from the forest floor were monitored after two forest harvesting prescriptions, a traditional clear-cut and a clearcut followed by biomass harvest, and compared to an un-harvested reference plot. Gaseous Hg emissions were measured in quadruplicate at four different times between March and November 2012 using Teflon dynamic flux chambers. We also applied enriched Hg isotope tracers and separately monitored their emission in triplicate at the same times as ambient measurements. Clearcut followed by biomass harvesting increased ambient Hg emissions the most. While significant intra-site spatial variability was observed, Hg emissions from the biomass harvested plot (180 ± 170 ng m(-2)d(-1)) were significantly greater than both the traditional clearcut plot (-40 ± 60 ng m(-2)d(-1)) and the un-harvested reference plot (-180 ± 115 ng m(-2)d(-1)) during July. This difference was likely a result of enhanced Hg(2+) photoreduction due to canopy removal and less shading from downed woody debris in the biomass harvested plot. Gaseous Hg emissions from more recently deposited Hg, as presumably representative of isotope tracer measurements, were not significantly influenced by harvesting. Most of the Hg tracer applied to the forest floor became sequestered within the ground vegetation and debris, leaf litter, and soil. We observed a dramatic lessening of tracer Hg emissions to near detection levels within 6 months. As post-clearcutting residues are increasingly used as a fuel or fiber resource, our observations suggest that gaseous Hg emissions from forest soils will increase, although it is not yet clear for

  10. Mercury Reduction and Removal from High Level Waste at the Defense Waste Processing Facility - 12511

    SciTech Connect

    Behrouzi, Aria; Zamecnik, Jack

    2012-07-01

    The Defense Waste Processing Facility processes legacy nuclear waste generated at the Savannah River Site during production of enriched uranium and plutonium required by the Cold War. The nuclear waste is first treated via a complex sequence of controlled chemical reactions and then vitrified into a borosilicate glass form and poured into stainless steel canisters. Converting the nuclear waste into borosilicate glass is a safe, effective way to reduce the volume of the waste and stabilize the radionuclides. One of the constituents in the nuclear waste is mercury, which is present because it served as a catalyst in the dissolution of uranium-aluminum alloy fuel rods. At high temperatures mercury is corrosive to off-gas equipment, this poses a major challenge to the overall vitrification process in separating mercury from the waste stream prior to feeding the high temperature melter. Mercury is currently removed during the chemical process via formic acid reduction followed by steam stripping, which allows elemental mercury to be evaporated with the water vapor generated during boiling. The vapors are then condensed and sent to a hold tank where mercury coalesces and is recovered in the tank's sump via gravity settling. Next, mercury is transferred from the tank sump to a purification cell where it is washed with water and nitric acid and removed from the facility. Throughout the chemical processing cell, compounds of mercury exist in the sludge, condensate, and off-gas; all of which present unique challenges. Mercury removal from sludge waste being fed to the DWPF melter is required to avoid exhausting it to the environment or any negative impacts to the Melter Off-Gas system. The mercury concentration must be reduced to a level of 0.8 wt% or less before being introduced to the melter. Even though this is being successfully accomplished, the material balances accounting for incoming and collected mercury are not equal. In addition, mercury has not been effectively

  11. Mercury, cadmium and lead biogeochemistry in the soil-plant-insect system in Huludao City.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhong-Sheng; Lu, Xian-Guo; Wang, Qi-Chao; Zheng, Dong-Mei

    2009-08-01

    Mercury, cadmium, and lead concentrations of ashed plants and insects samples were investigated and compared with those of soil to reveal their biogeochemical processes along food chains in Huludao City, Liaoning Province, China. Concentration factors of each fragments of the soil-plant-the herbivorous insect-the carnivorous insect food chain were 0.18, 6.57, and 7.88 for mercury; 6.82, 2.01, and 0.48 for cadmium; 1.47, 2.24, and 0.57 for lead, respectively. On the whole, mercury was the most largely biomagnified, but cadmium and lead were not greatly accumulated in the carnivorous insects as expected when the food chain extended to the secondary consumers. Results indicated that concentration factors depended on metals and insects species of food chains. PMID:19280090

  12. Glutathione enzyme and selenoprotein polymorphisms associate with mercury biomarker levels in Michigan dental professionals

    SciTech Connect

    Goodrich, Jaclyn M.; Wang, Yi; Gillespie, Brenda; Werner, Robert; Franzblau, Alfred; Basu, Niladri

    2011-12-15

    Mercury is a potent toxicant of concern to both the general public and occupationally exposed workers (e.g., dentists). Recent studies suggest that several genes mediating the toxicokinetics of mercury are polymorphic in humans and may influence inter-individual variability in mercury accumulation. This work hypothesizes that polymorphisms in key glutathione synthesizing enzyme, glutathione s-transferase, and selenoprotein genes underlie inter-individual differences in mercury body burden as assessed by analytical mercury measurement in urine and hair, biomarkers of elemental mercury and methylmercury, respectively. Urine and hair samples were collected from a population of dental professionals (n = 515), and total mercury content was measured. Average urine (1.06 {+-} 1.24 ug/L) and hair mercury levels (0.49 {+-} 0.63 ug/g) were similar to national U.S. population averages. Taqman assays were used to genotype DNA from buccal swab samples at 15 polymorphic sites in genes implicated in mercury metabolism. Linear regression modeling assessed the ability of polymorphisms to modify the relationship between mercury biomarker levels and exposure sources (e.g., amalgams, fish consumption). Five polymorphisms were significantly associated with urine mercury levels (GSTT1 deletion), hair mercury levels (GSTP1-105, GSTP1-114, GSS 5 Prime ), or both (SEPP1 3 Prime UTR). Overall, this study suggests that polymorphisms in selenoproteins and glutathione-related genes may influence elimination of mercury in the urine and hair or mercury retention following exposures to elemental mercury (via dental amalgams) and methylmercury (via fish consumption). -- Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We explore the influence of 15 polymorphisms on urine and hair Hg levels. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Urine and hair Hg levels in dental professionals were similar to the US population. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer GSTT1 and SEPP1 polymorphisms associated with urine Hg levels. Black

  13. Correlations Between Gene Expression and Mercury Levels in Blood of Boys With and Without Autism

    PubMed Central

    Green, Peter G.; Tian, Yingfang; Hertz-Picciotto, Irva; Pessah, Isaac N.; Hansen, Robin; Yang, Xiaowei; Teng, Jennifer; Gregg, Jeffrey P.; Ashwood, Paul; Van de Water, Judy; Sharp, Frank R.

    2009-01-01

    Gene expression in blood was correlated with mercury levels in blood of 2- to 5-year-old boys with autism (AU) compared to age-matched typically developing (TD) control boys. This was done to address the possibility that the two groups might metabolize toxicants, such as mercury, differently. RNA was isolated from blood and gene expression assessed on whole genome Affymetrix Human U133 expression microarrays. Mercury levels were measured using an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was performed and partial correlations between gene expression and mercury levels were calculated, after correcting for age and batch effects. To reduce false positives, only genes shared by the ANCOVA models were analyzed. Of the 26 genes that correlated with mercury levels in both AU and TD boys, 11 were significantly different between the groups (P(Diagnosis*Mercury) ≤ 0.05). The expression of a large number of genes (n = 316) correlated with mercury levels in TD but not in AU boys (P ≤ 0.05), the most represented biological functions being cell death and cell morphology. Expression of 189 genes correlated with mercury levels in AU but not in TD boys (P ≤ 0.05), the most represented biological functions being cell morphology, amino acid metabolism, and antigen presentation. These data and those in our companion study on correlation of gene expression and lead levels show that AU and TD children display different correlations between transcript levels and low levels of mercury and lead. These findings might suggest different genetic transcriptional programs associated with mercury in AU compared to TD children. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12640-009-9137-7) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users. PMID:19937285

  14. Identification of the double acceptor levels of the mercury vacancies in HgCdTe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gemain, F.; Robin, I. C.; De Vita, M.; Brochen, S.; Lusson, A.

    2011-03-01

    Photoluminescence and temperature-dependent Hall measurements of nonintentionally doped HgCdTe epilayers were compared. These films were grown by liquid phase epitaxy and postannealed under different conditions as follows: a p-type annealing was used to control the mercury vacancy concentration and a n-type annealing under saturated Hg atmosphere was used to fill the mercury vacancies. The comparison of the photoluminescence measurements with Hall effect measurements allows us to identify the two acceptor energy levels of the mercury vacancy and to evidence its "negative-U" property corresponding to a stabilization of the ionized state V- of the mercury vacancy compared to its neutral state V0.

  15. Mercury Levels in Pregnant Women, Children, and Seafood from Mexico City

    PubMed Central

    Basu, Niladri; Tutino, Rebecca; Zhang, Zhenzhen; Cantonwine, David E.; Goodrich, Jaclyn M.; Somers, Emily C.; Rodriguez, Lauren; Schnaas, Lourdes; Solano, Maritsa; Mercado, Adriana; Peterson, Karen; Sánchez, Brisa N.; Hernández-Avila, Mauricio; Hu, Howard; Téllez-Rojo, Martha Maria

    2014-01-01

    Background Mercury is a global contaminant of concern though little is known about exposures in México. Objectives To characterize mercury levels in pregnant women, children, and commonly consumed seafood samples. Methods Use resources of the Early Life Exposures in Mexico to Environmental Toxicants (ELEMENT) birth cohorts to measure total mercury levels in archived samples from 348 pregnant women (blood from three trimesters and cord blood), 825 offspring (blood, hair, urine) and their mothers (hair), and 91 seafood and canned tuna samples from Mexico City. Results Maternal blood mercury levels correlated across three trimesters and averaged 3.4μg/L. Cord blood mercury averaged 4.7μg/L and correlated with maternal blood from trimester 3 (but not trimesters 1 and 2). In children, blood, hair and urine mercury levels correlated and averaged 1.8μg/L, 0.6μg/g, and 0.9μg/L, respectively. Hair mercury was 0.5μg/g in mothers and correlated with child's hair. Mean consumption of canned tuna, fresh fish, canned sardine, and shellfish was 3.1, 2.2, 0.5, and 1.0 times per month respectively in pregnant women. Mean mercury content in 7 of 23 seafood species and 5 of 9 canned tuna brands purchased exceeded the U.S. EPA guidance value of 0.3 μg/g. Conclusions Mercury exposures in pregnant women and children from Mexico City, via biomarker studies, are generally 3-5 times greater than values reported in population surveys from the U.S., Canada, and elsewhere. In particular, mercury levels in 29-39% of the maternal participants exceeded the biomonitoring guideline associated with the U.S. EPA reference dose for mercury. PMID:25262076

  16. Arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury in surface soils, Pueblo, Colorado: Implications for population health risk

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Diawara, D.M.; Litt, J.S.; Unis, D.; Alfonso, N.; Martinez, L.A.; Crock, J.G.; Smith, D.B.; Carsella, J.

    2006-01-01

    Decades of intensive industrial and agricultural practices as well as rapid urbanization have left communities like Pueblo, Colorado facing potential health threats from pollution of its soils, air, water and food supply. To address such concerns about environmental contamination, we conducted an urban geochemical study of the city of Pueblo to offer insights into the potential chemical hazards in soil and inform priorities for future health studies and population interventions aimed at reducing exposures to inorganic substances. The current study characterizes the environmental landscape of Pueblo in terms of heavy metals, and relates this to population distributions. Soil was sampled within the city along transects and analyzed for arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), mercury (Hg) and lead (Pb). We also profiled Pueblo's communities in terms of their socioeconomic status and demographics. ArcGIS 9.0 was used to perform exploratory spatial data analysis and generate community profiles and prediction maps. The topsoil in Pueblo contains more As, Cd, Hg and Pb than national soil averages, although average Hg content in Pueblo was within reported baseline ranges. The highest levels of As concentrations ranged between 56.6 and 66.5 ppm. Lead concentrations exceeded 300 ppm in several of Pueblo's residential communities. Elevated levels of lead are concentrated in low-income Hispanic and African-American communities. Areas of excessively high Cd concentration exist around Pueblo, including low income and minority communities, raising additional health and environmental justice concerns. Although the distribution patterns vary by element and may reflect both industrial and non-industrial sources, the study confirms that there is environmental contamination around Pueblo and underscores the need for a comprehensive public health approach to address environmental threats in urban communities. ?? Springer 2006.

  17. Chapter A5. Section 6.4.B. Low-Level Mercury

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lewis, Michael Edward; Brigham, Mark E.

    2004-01-01

    Collecting and processing water samples for analysis of mercury at a low (subnanogram per liter) level requires use of ultratrace-level techniques for equipment cleaning, sample collection, and sample processing. Established techniques and associated quality-assurance (QA) procedures for the collection and processing of water samples for trace-element analysis at the part-per-billion level (NFM 3-5) are not adequate for low-level mercury samples. Modifications to the part-per-billion procedures are necessary to minimize contamination of samples at a typical ambient mercury concentration, which commonly is at the subnanogram-per-liter level.

  18. Organic Carbon Transformation and Mercury Methylation in Tundra Soils from Barrow Alaska

    DOE Data Explorer

    Liang, L.; Wullschleger, Stan; Graham, David; Gu, B.; Yang, Ziming

    2016-04-20

    This dataset includes information on soil labile organic carbon transformation and mercury methylation for tundra soils from Barrow, Alaska. The soil cores were collected from high-centered polygon (trough) at BEO and were incubated under anaerobic laboratory conditions at both freezing and warming temperatures for up to 8 months. Soil organic carbon including reducing sugars, alcohols, and organic acids were analyzed, and CH4 and CO2 emissions were quantified. Net production of methylmercury and Fe(II)/Fe(total) ratio were also measured and provided in this dataset.

  19. CALCULATION OF SOIL-WATER AND BENTHIC SEDIMENT PARTITION COEFFICIENTS FOR MERCURY

    EPA Science Inventory

    To accurately model mercury transport to water bodies, an assessment of this pollutant's behavior in the watershed is critical. Partition coefficients, defined as an estimate of the ratio of the pollutant concentration sorbed onto soil/sediment particles to the pollutant concentr...

  20. Soil and Sediment Properties Affecting the Transport and Accumulations of Mercury in a Flood Control Reservoir

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mercury accumulations in some fish species from Grenada Lake in north Mississippi exceed the Food and Drug Administration standards for human consumption. This large flood control reservoir serves as a sink for the Skuna and Yalobusha River watersheds whose highly erodible soils contribute to exces...

  1. SEVERAL MECHANISMS OF MERCURY RESISTANCE FOUND IN SOIL ISOLATES FROM PAVLODAR, KAZAKHSTAN

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abdrashitova, Svetlava A., M.A. Ilyushchenko, A. Yu Kalmykv, S.A. Aitkeldieva, Wendy J. Davis-Hoover and Richard Devereux. In press. Several Mechanisms of Mercury Resistance Found in Soil Isolates from Pavlodar, Kazakhstan (Abstract). To be presented at the Battelle Conference on...

  2. Latent Effect of Soil Organic Matter Oxidation on Mercury Cycling within a Southern Boreal Ecosystem

    EPA Science Inventory

    The focus of this study is to investigate processes causing the observed spatial variation of total mercury (THg) in the soil O horizon of watersheds within the Superior National Forest (Minnesota) and to determine if results have implications toward understanding long-term chang...

  3. Organic and inorganic amendment application on mercury-polluted soils: effects on soil chemical and biochemical properties.

    PubMed

    García-Sánchez, Mercedes; Klouza, Martin; Holečková, Zlata; Tlustoš, Pavel; Száková, Jiřina

    2016-07-01

    On the basis of a previous study performed in our laboratory, the use of organic and inorganic amendments can significantly modify the Hg mobility in soil. We have compared the effectiveness of organic and inorganic amendments such as digestate and fly ash, respectively, reducing the Hg mobility in Chernozem and Luvisol soils differing in their physicochemical properties. Hence, the aim of this work was to compare the impact of digestate and fly ash application on the chemical and biochemical parameters in these two mercury-contaminated soils in a model batch experiment. Chernozem and Luvisol soils were artificially contaminated with Hg and then incubated under controlled conditions for 21 days. Digestate and fly ash were applied to both soils in a dose of 10 and 1.5 %, respectively, and soil samples were collected after 1, 7, 14, and 21 days of incubation. The presence of Hg in both soils negatively affected to processes such as nitrification, provoked a decline in the soil microbial biomass C (soil microbial biomass C (MBC)), and the microbial activities (arylsulfatase, and β-glucosaminidase) in both soils. Meanwhile, the digestate addition to Chernozem and Luvisol soils contaminated with Hg improved the soil chemical properties (pH, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), N (Ntot), inorganic-N forms (N-NH4 (+) and N-NO3 (-))), as consequence of high content in C and N contained in digestate. Likewise, the soil MBC and soil microbial activities (dehydrogenase, arylsulfatase, and β-glucosaminidase) were greatly enhanced by the digestate application in both soils. In contrast, fly ash application did not have a remarkable positive effect when compared to digestate in Chernozem and Luvisol soil contaminated with mercury. These results may indicate that the use of organic amendments such as digestate considerably improved the soil health in Chernozem and Luvisol compared with fly ash, alleviating the detrimental impact of Hg. Probably, the chemical properties present in

  4. The bioaccessibility of soil-based mercury as determined by physiological based extraction tests and human biomonitoring in children.

    PubMed

    Safruk, Adam M; Berger, Robert G; Jackson, Blair J; Pinsent, Celine; Hair, Alan T; Sigal, Elliot A

    2015-06-15

    Environmental contaminants associated with soil particles are generally less bioavailable than contaminants associated with other exposure media where chemicals are often found in more soluble forms. In vitro methods, such as Physiological Based Extraction Tests (PBET), can provide estimates of bioaccessibility for soil-based contaminants. The results of these tests can be used to predict exposure to contaminants from soil ingestion pathways within human health risk assessment (HHRA). In the current investigation, an HHRA was conducted to examine the risks associated with elevated concentrations of mercury in soils in the northern Canadian smelter community of Flin Flon, Manitoba. A PBET was completed for residential soils and indicated mean bioaccessibilities of 1.2% and 3.0% for total mercury using gastric phase and gastric+intestinal phase methodologies, respectively. However, as many regulators only allow for the consideration of in vitro results for lead and arsenic in the HHRA process, in vitro bioaccessibility results for mercury were not utilized in the current HHRA. Based on the need to assume 100% bioaccessibility for inorganic mercury in soil, results from the HHRA indicated the need for further assessment of exposure and risk. A biomonitoring study was undertaken for children between 2 and 15 years of age in the community to examine urinary inorganic mercury concentrations. Overall, 375 children provided valid urine samples for analysis. Approximately 50% of urine samples had concentrations of urinary inorganic mercury below the limit of detection (0.1 μg/L), with an average creatinine adjusted concentration of 0.11 μg/g. Despite high variability in mercury soil concentrations within sub-communities, soil concentrations did not appear to influence urinary mercury concentrations. The results of the current investigation indicate that mercury bioaccessibility in residential soils in the Flin Flon area was likely limited and that HHRA estimates would

  5. Atmospheric mercury pollution at an urban site in central Taiwan: mercury emission sources at ground level.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jiaoyan; Liu, Chia-Kuan; Huang, Ci-Song; Fang, Guor-Cheng

    2012-04-01

    Total gaseous mercury (Hg) (TGM), gaseous oxidized Hg (GOM), and particulate-bound Hg (PBM) concentrations and dry depositions were measured at an urban site in central Taiwan. The concentrations were 6.14±3.91 ng m(-3), 332±153, and 71.1±46.1 pg m(-3), respectively. These results demonstrate high Hg pollution at the ground level in Taiwan. A back trajectory plot shows the sources of the high TGM concentration were in the low atmosphere (<500 m) and approximately 50% of the air masses coming from upper troposphere (>500 m) were associated with low TGM concentrations. This finding implies that Hg is trapped in the low atmosphere and comes from local Hg emission sources. The conditional probability function (CPF) reveals that the plumes of high TGM concentrations come from the south and northwest of the site. The plume from the south comes from two municipal solid waste incinerators (MSWIs). However, no significant Hg point source is located to the northwest of the site; therefore, the plumes from the northwest are hypothesized to be related to the combustion of agricultural waste. Dry deposition fluxes of Hg measured at this site considerably exceeded those measured in North America. Overall, this area is regarded as a highly Hg contaminated area because of local Hg emission sources. PMID:22316589

  6. LABORATORY STUDIES ON THE REMEDIATION OF MERCURY-CONTAMINATED SOILS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mercury, in contrast to other toxic metals, cycles between the atmosphere, land, and water. During this cycle, it undergoes a series of complex chemical and physical transformations. Because of these transformations, it is found in the environment not only as simple inorganic and...

  7. Complexation of mercury(II) ions with humic acids in tundra soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasilevich, R. S.; Beznosikov, V. A.; Lodygin, E. D.; Kondratenok, B. M.

    2014-03-01

    The interaction mechanisms of mercury(II) ions with preparations of humic acids (HAs) isolated from organic horizons of surface-gleyed soils (Haplic Stagnosol (Gelic, Siltic)) of shrub tundra and hydromorphic peat gley soils (Histic Cryosol (Reductaquic, Siltic)) of moss-lichen tundra have been studied. The particular features of the interactions between the mercury(II) ions and the HAs are related to the molecular structure of the HAs, the mercury concentration range, and the environmental parameters. The fixation of mercury(II) ions into stable coordination compounds is most efficient in the pH range of 2.5-3.5. At the element concentrations below 0.50 μmol/dm3, the main complexing sites of HAs are their peripheral aminoacid functional groups. Pyrocatechol, salicylate, and phenolic groups from the nuclear moiety of molecules interact in the concentration range of 0.0005-0.50 mmol/dm3; the physical sorption of mercury hydroxo complexes by the surface of HAs is the main process occurring in the system.

  8. Mercury levels in locally manufactured Mexican skin-lightening creams.

    PubMed

    Peregrino, Claudia P; Moreno, Myriam V; Miranda, Silvia V; Rubio, Alma D; Leal, Luz O

    2011-06-01

    Mercury is considered one of the most toxic elements for plants and animals. Nevertheless, in the Middle East, Asia and Latin America, whitening creams containing mercury are being manufactured and purchased, despite their obvious health risks. Due to the mass distribution of these products, this can be considered a global public health issue. In Mexico, these products are widely available in pharmacies, beauty aid and health stores. They are used for their skin lightening effects. The aim of this work was to analyze the mercury content in some cosmetic whitening creams using the cold vapor technique coupled with atomic absorption spectrometry (CV-AAS). A total of 16 skin-lightening creams from the local market were investigated. No warning information was noted on the packaging. In 10 of the samples, no mercury was detected. The mercury content in six of the samples varied between 878 and 36,000 ppm, despite the fact that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined that the limit for mercury in creams should be less than 1 ppm. Skin creams containing mercury are still available and commonly used in Mexico and many developing countries, and their contents are poorly controlled. PMID:21776243

  9. Mercury Levels in Locally Manufactured Mexican Skin-Lightening Creams

    PubMed Central

    Peregrino, Claudia P.; Moreno, Myriam V.; Miranda, Silvia V.; Rubio, Alma D.; Leal, Luz O.

    2011-01-01

    Mercury is considered one of the most toxic elements for plants and animals. Nevertheless, in the Middle East, Asia and Latin America, whitening creams containing mercury are being manufactured and purchased, despite their obvious health risks. Due to the mass distribution of these products, this can be considered a global public health issue. In Mexico, these products are widely available in pharmacies, beauty aid and health stores. They are used for their skin lightening effects. The aim of this work was to analyze the mercury content in some cosmetic whitening creams using the cold vapor technique coupled with atomic absorption spectrometry (CV-AAS). A total of 16 skin-lightening creams from the local market were investigated. No warning information was noted on the packaging. In 10 of the samples, no mercury was detected. The mercury content in six of the samples varied between 878 and 36,000 ppm, despite the fact that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined that the limit for mercury in creams should be less than 1 ppm. Skin creams containing mercury are still available and commonly used in Mexico and many developing countries, and their contents are poorly controlled. PMID:21776243

  10. A simple spectrophotometric determination of trace level mercury using 1,5-diphenylthiocarbazone solubilized in micelle.

    PubMed

    Khan, Humaira; Ahmed, M Jamaluddin; Bhanger, M Iqbal

    2005-05-01

    A very simple, ultra-sensitive and fairly selective non-extractive spectrophotmetric method is presented for the rapid determination of mercury(II) at ultra-trace level using 1,5-diphenylthiocarbazone (dithizone) as a new micellar spectrophotometric reagent (lambdamax = 490 nm) in a slightly acidic (0.07 - 0.17 M H2SO4) aqueous solution. The presence of a micellar system avoids the previous steps of solvent extraction and reduces the cost, toxicity while enhancing the sensitivity, selectivity and the molar absorptivity. The reaction is instantaneous and the absorbance remains stable for over 24 h. The average molar absorption coefficient and Sandell's sensitivity were found to be 5.02 x 10(4) L mol(-1) cm(-1) and 10 ng cm(-2) of Hg, respectively. Linear calibration graphs were obtained for 0.05 - 10 mg L(-1) of Hg; the stoichiometric composition of the chelate is 1:2 (Hg:dithizone). The method is characterized by a detection limit of 1 microg L(-1) of Hg. Large excesses of over 60 cations, anions and complexing agents (e.g. EDTA, tartrate, oxalate, citrate, phosphate, thiourea, azide, SCN-) do not interfere in the determination. The method was successfully applied to a number of environmental water samples (potable and polluted), biological samples (human blood and urine; milk and fish) and soils; solutions contained both mercury(I) and mercury(II) as well as complex synthetic mixtures. The method has high precision and accuracy (s = +/-0.01 for 0.1 mg L(-1)). PMID:15913137

  11. Mercury and selenium levels, and selenium:mercury molar ratios of brain, muscle and other tissues in bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) from New Jersey, USA

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Jeitner, Christian; Donio, Mark; Pittfield, Taryn; Gochfeld, Michael

    2015-01-01

    A number of contaminants affect fish health, including mercury and selenium, and the selenium: mercury molar ratio. Recently the protective effects of selenium on methylmercury toxicity have been publicized, particularly for consumption of saltwater fish. Yet the relative ameliorating effects of selenium on toxicity within fish have not been examined, nor has the molar ratio in different tissues, (i.e. brain). We examined mercury and selenium levels in brain, kidney, liver, red and white muscle, and skin and scales in bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) from New Jersey to determine whether there were toxic levels of either metal, and we computed the selenium: mercury molar ratios by tissues. Total mercury averaged 0.32 ± 0.02 ppm wet weight in edible muscle and 0.09 ± 0.01 ppm in brain. Selenium concentration averaged 0.37 ± 0.03 in muscle and 0.36 ± 0.03 ppm in brain. There were significant differences in levels of mercury, selenium, and selenium: mercury molar ratios, among tissues. Mercury and selenium levels were correlated in kidney and skin/scales. Mercury levels were highest in kidney, intermediate in muscle and liver, and lowest in brain and skin/scales; selenium levels were also highest in kidney, intermediate in liver, and were an order of magnitude lower in the white muscle and brain. Mercury levels in muscle, kidney and skin/scales were positively correlated with fish size (length). Selenium levels in muscle, kidney and liver were positively correlated with fish length, but in brain; selenium levels were negatively correlated with fish length. The selenium: mercury molar ratio was negatively correlated with fish length for white muscle, liver, kidney, and brain, particularly for fish over 50 cm in length, suggesting that older fish experience less protective advantages of selenium against mercury toxicity than smaller fish, and that consumers of bluefish similarly receive less advantage from eating larger fish. PMID:23202378

  12. Mercury levels in Great Lakes herring gull eggs, 1972--1992

    SciTech Connect

    Weseloh, D.V.; Koster, M.D.; Ryckman, D.P.; Struger, J.

    1995-12-31

    Since 1971, the herring gull (Larus argentatus) has been used as a sentinel species for monitoring the levels of persistent contaminants in the Great Lakes ecosystem. In this study, 21 herring gull colonies in the Great Lakes and connecting channels were sampled for years 1972--1976, 1981--1983, 1985 and 1992. For each year, 10 eggs (usually) were collected from each colony site and analyzed for total mercury (ppm, wet weight). Results indicated that eggs from Lake Ontario displayed the highest mercury levels, mean = 0.28 (s.d. = 0.08) to 0.73 (0.23). Lake Erie typically displayed the lowest egg mercury levels, 0.18 (0.08) to 0.24 (0.11). Overall, mercury levels ranged from 0.12 (0.02) in 1985 to 0.88 (0.23) in 1982 for Channel-Shelter Island (Lake Huron) and Pigeon Island (Lake Ontario), respectively. Generally, all colony sites showed peak mercury levels in 1982. A significant decline in egg mercury levels was observed in six colony sites between 1972 and 1992 and in three colony sites between 1981 and 1992. The mean herring gull egg mercury levels observed in the early and mid 1970s and in 1982 for some colony sites were within the range found which potentially reduces hatchability in other fish-eating bird species.

  13. Unexpectedly high mercury level in pelleted commercial fish feed

    SciTech Connect

    Choi, M.H.; Cech, J.J. Jr.

    1998-10-01

    An unexpectedly high mercury (Hg) level was found in a pelleted commercial fish feed used to feed fish in laboratory and fish farm settings. Mean total Hg (T-Hg) concentration in the commercial fish pellets was 66 ppb. Mean total selenium (T-Se) concentration in the pellets was 1,120 ppb (ranging from 790 to 1,360 ppb). Total Hg and Se in the whole blood of Sacramento blackfish and in the fish feed were determined by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). During a 10-week sampling period T-Hg in blood fluctuated between 35 and 56 ppb. A highly significant, positive correlation was found between T-Hg in the fish blood and in the fish feed through the sampling period. On the other hand, no correlation was found between T-Se in the fish feed and T-Hg or T-Se blood level. Researchers working with fish in Hg studies need to know that fish pellets may contain Hg and to consider the influence of these pellets in their results.

  14. Mercury Release from Soils and Sediments in the Sacramento River Watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suess, E.; Aiken, G. R.; Ryan, J. N.; Gasper, J. D.

    2007-12-01

    Mercury released into water from soils and sediments contaminated by cinnabar (HgS) and gold mining is a major environmental concern in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, California. To better understand the conditions resulting in Hg solubilization from these contaminated materials, six soil and sediment samples from the Coastal Range and the Sierra Nevada were subject to batch leaching experiments under varying conditions. Sequential extraction analyses of the soils and sediments indicated that most of the mercury was present as (1) Hg as HgS in samples affected by HgS mining, which occurred in the Coastal Range, (2) Hg bound to metal oxides in a background serpentine soil from the Coastal Range, (3) Hg bound to sediment organic matter in lake sediments from Camp Far West Reservoir, and (4) elemental Hg in a sluice sediment from Starr Tunnel. The effects of pH, ionic strength, inorganic ions (chloride, calcium), simple organic ligands (mercaptoacetic acid, salicylic acid, EDTA), and dissolved organic matter (DOM) on the release of Hg were investigated. Leaching experiments confirmed that the water-soluble fraction was small (9 to 350 ng/L) compared to the amounts of Hg associated with the solid samples (1 to 36 μg/g total mercury); however, these concentrations would be sufficient to result in increased methylation by sulfate-reducing bacteria in wetland systems. An increase in mercury release was observed with (1) increasing pH due to solubilization of soil organic matter, (2) decreasing ionic strength due to colloid stabilization, and (3) increasing chloride concentration due to the formation of complexes with mercury. The presence of calcium strongly inhibited mercury release. Among the organic ligands, mercaptoacetic acid, which binds Hg very strongly, was the most effective at solubilizing Hg. DOM, in the form of organic matter isolates, was also very effective at solubilizing Hg for all samples except the lake sediment sample, with the most aromatic organic

  15. Fish consumption and hair mercury levels in women of childbearing age, Martin County, Florida.

    PubMed

    Nair, Anil; Jordan, Melissa; Watkins, Sharon; Washam, Robert; DuClos, Chris; Jones, Serena; Palcic, Jason; Pawlowicz, Marek; Blackmore, Carina

    2014-12-01

    The health effects of mercury in humans are mostly on the developing nervous system. Pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding must be targeted in order to decrease mercury exposure to the populations at highest risk-infants, unborn fetuses, and young children. This purpose of this study is to understand the demographics of fish-consumption patterns among women of childbearing age (including pregnant women) in Martin County, Florida, and to analyze the associations of mercury levels in participants' hair with socio-demographic variables in order to better design prevention messages and campaigns. Mercury concentrations in hair samples of 408 women ages 18-49 were assessed. Data on demographic factors, pregnancy status, fish consumption, and awareness of fish advisories were collected during personal interviews. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and multivariate logistic regression. The geometric and arithmetic means of hair mercury concentration were 0.371 and 0.676 µg/g of hair. One-fourth of the respondents had a concentration ≥1 µg/g of hair. Consuming a higher number of fish meals per month, consumption of commercially purchased or locally caught fish higher in mercury, White race and income ≥$75,000 were positively associated with the likelihood of having higher hair mercury levels. This study confirms the existence of a higher overall mean hair mercury level and a higher percentage of women with ≥1 µg/g hair mercury level than those reported at the national level and in other regional studies. This suggests the need for region-specific fish consumption advisories to minimize mercury exposure in humans. PMID:24807406

  16. Lead in soil: Recommended maximum permissible levels

    SciTech Connect

    Madhavan, S.; Rosenman, K.D.; Shehata, T.

    1989-06-01

    Lead in soil has been recognized as a public health problem, particularly among children. In recent years, attention has been directed to cumulative adverse effects of lead at low levels of intake. Lead-contaminated soil and dust have been identified as important contributors to blood lead levels. Based on available data on blood lead and lead in soil, an approach has been developed to suggest a permissible level of lead in soil, below which there will be reasonable certainty that adverse health effects will not occur. An acceptable level of 600 ppm of lead in soil suggested as a ''safe'' level would contribute no more than 5 micrograms/dl to total blood lead of children under 12 years of age. Maximum permissible levels of lead in soil have been recommended based on the dose-response relationship of lead in soil and blood lead in children.

  17. Field analytical techniques for mercury in soils technology evaluation. Topical report, November 1994--March 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Solc, J.; Harju, J.A.; Grisanti, A.A.

    1998-02-01

    This report presents the evaluation of the four field analytical techniques for mercury detection in soils, namely (1) an anodic stripping voltametry technique (ASV) developed and tested by General Electric Corporation; (2) a static headspace analysis (SHSA) technique developed and tested by Dr. Ralph Turner of Oak Ridge National Laboratory; (3) the BiMelyze{reg_sign} Mercury Immunoassay (Bio) developed and tested by BioNebraska, Inc.; and (4) a transportable x-ray fluorescence (XRF) instrument/technique developed and tested by Spectrace, Inc.

  18. Ultralow Level Mercury Treatment Using Chemical Reduction and Air Stripping

    SciTech Connect

    Looney, B.B.

    2001-02-23

    The overall objective of this work is to develop a reasonable and cost-effective approach to meet the emerging mercury standards, especially for high volume outfalls with concentrations below the drinking water standard.

  19. Mercury contamination study for flight system safety

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gorzynski, C. S., Jr.; Maycock, J. N.

    1972-01-01

    The effects and prevention of possible mercury pollution from the failure of solar electric propulsion spacecraft using mercury propellant were studied from tankage loading of post launch trajector injection. During preflight operations and initial flight mode there is little danger of mercury pollution if proper safety precautions are taken. Any spillage on the loading, mating, transportation, or launch pad areas is obvious and can be removed by vacuum cleaning soil and chemical fixing. Mercury spilled on Cape Kennedy ground soil will be chemically complexed and retained by the sandstone subsoil. A cover layer of sand or gravel on spilled mercury which has settled to the bottom of a water body adjacent to the system operation will control and eliminate the formation of toxic organic mercurials. Mercury released into the earth's atmosphere through leakage of a fireball will be diffused to low concentration levels. However, gas phase reactions of mercury with ozone could cause a local ozone depletion and result in serious ecological hazards.

  20. Comparative Analysis for Polluted Agricultural Soils with Arsenic, Lead, and Mercury in Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Yarto-Ramirez, Mario; Santos-Santos, Elvira; Gavilan-Garcia, Arturo; Castro-Diaz, Jose; Gavilan-Garcia, Irma Cruz; Rosiles, Rene; Suarez, Sara

    2004-03-31

    The use of mercury in Mexico has been associated with the mining industry of Zacatecas. This activity has polluted several areas currently used for agriculture. The main objective of this study was to investigate the heavy metal concentration (Hg, As and Pb) in soil of Guadalupe Zacatecas in order to justify a further environmental risk assessment in the site. A 2X3 km grid was used for the sampling process and 20 soil samples were taken. The analysis was developed using EPA SW 846: 3050B/6010B method for arsenic and metals and EPA SW 846: 7471A for total mercury. It was concluded that there are heavy metals in agricultural soils used for corn and bean farming. For this it is required to make an environmental risk assessment and a bioavailability study in order to determine if there's a risk for heavy metals bioaccumulation in animals or human beings or metal lixiviation to aquifers.

  1. Vertical profile measurements of soil air suggest immobilization of gaseous elemental mercury in mineral soil.

    PubMed

    Obrist, Daniel; Pokharel, Ashok K; Moore, Christopher

    2014-02-18

    Evasion of gaseous elemental Hg (Hg(0)g) from soil surfaces is an important source of atmospheric Hg, but the volatility and solid-gas phase partitioning of Hg(0) within soils is poorly understood. We developed a novel system to continuously measure Hg(0)g concentrations in soil pores at multiple depths and locations, and present a total of 297 days of measurements spanning 14 months in two forests in the Sierra Nevada mountains, California, U.S. Temporal patterns showed consistent pore Hg(0)g concentrations below levels measured in the atmosphere (termed Hg(0)g immobilization), ranging from 66 to 94% below atmospheric concentrations throughout multiple seasons. The lowest pore Hg(0)g concentrations were observed in the deepest soil layers (40 cm), but significant immobilization was already present in the top 7 cm. In the absence of sinks or sources, pore Hg(0)g levels would be in equilibrium with atmospheric concentrations due to the porous nature of the soil matrix and gas diffusion. Therefore, we explain decreases in pore Hg(0)g in mineral soils below atmospheric concentrations--or below levels found in upper soils as observed in previous studies--with the presence of an Hg(0)g sink in mineral soils possibly related to Hg(0)g oxidation or other processes such as sorption or dissolution in soil water. Surface chamber measurements showing daytime Hg(0)g emissions and nighttime Hg(0)g deposition indicate that near-surface layers likely dominate net atmospheric Hg(0)g exchange resulting in typical diurnal cycles due to photochemcial reduction at the surface and possibly Hg(0)g evasion from litter layers. In contrast, mineral soils seem to be decoupled from this surface exchange, showing consistent Hg(0)g uptake and downward redistribution--although our calculations indicate these fluxes to be minor compared to other mass fluxes. A major implication is that once Hg is incorporated into mineral soils, it may be unlikely subjected to renewed Hg(0)g re-emission from

  2. Mercury methylation in paddy soil: source and distribution of mercury species at a Hg mining area, Guizhou Province, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Lei; Anderson, Christopher W. N.; Qiu, Guangle; Meng, Bo; Wang, Dingyong; Feng, Xinbin

    2016-04-01

    Rice paddy plantation is the dominant agricultural land use throughout Asia. Rice paddy fields have been identified as important sites for methylmercury (MeHg) production in the terrestrial ecosystem and a primary pathway of MeHg exposure to humans in mercury (Hg) mining areas. We compared the source and distribution of Hg species in different compartments of the rice paddy during a complete rice-growing season at two different typical Hg-contaminated mining sites in Guizhou province, China: an abandoned site with a high Hg concentration in soil but a low concentration in the atmosphere and a current-day artisanal site with a low concentration in soil but a high concentration in the atmosphere. Our results showed that the flux of new Hg to the ecosystem from irrigation and atmospheric deposition was insignificant relative to the pool of old Hg in soil; the dominant source of MeHg to paddy soil is in situ methylation of inorganic Hg (IHg). Elevated MeHg concentrations and the high proportion of Hg as MeHg in paddy water and the surface soil layer at the artisanal site demonstrated active Hg methylation at this site only. We propose that the in situ production of MeHg in paddy water and surface soil is dependent on elevated Hg in the atmosphere and the consequential deposition of new Hg into a low-pH anoxic geochemical system. The absence of depth-dependent variability in the MeHg concentration in soil cores collected from the abandoned Hg mining site, consistent with the low concentration of Hg in the atmosphere and high pH of the paddy water and irrigation water, suggested that net production of MeHg at this site was limited. We propose that the concentration of Hg in ambient air is an indicator for the risk of MeHg accumulation in paddy rice.

  3. Increased Mercury Levels in Patients with Celiac Disease following a Gluten-Free Regimen

    PubMed Central

    Elli, Luca; Rossi, Valentina; Conte, Dario; Ronchi, Anna; Tomba, Carolina; Passoni, Manuela; Bardella, Maria Teresa; Roncoroni, Leda; Guzzi, Gianpaolo

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aim. Although mercury is involved in several immunological diseases, nothing is known about its implication in celiac disease. Our aim was to evaluate blood and urinary levels of mercury in celiac patients. Methods. We prospectively enrolled 30 celiac patients (20 treated with normal duodenal mucosa and 10 untreated with duodenal atrophy) and 20 healthy controls from the same geographic area. Blood and urinary mercury concentrations were measured by means of flow injection inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Enrolled patients underwent dental chart for amalgam fillings and completed a food-frequency questionnaire to evaluate diet and fish intake. Results. Mercury blood/urinary levels were 2.4 ± 2.3/1.0 ± 1.4, 10.2 ± 6.7/2.2 ± 3.0 and 3.7 ± 2.7/1.3 ± 1.2 in untreated CD, treated CD, and healthy controls, respectively. Resulting mercury levels were significantly higher in celiac patients following a gluten-free diet. No differences were found regarding fish intake and number of amalgam fillings. No demographic or clinical data were significantly associated with mercury levels in biologic samples. Conclusion. Data demonstrate a fourfold increase of mercury blood levels in celiac patients following a gluten-free diet. Further studies are needed to clarify its role in celiac mechanism. PMID:25802516

  4. Mercury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gault, D. E.; Burns, J. A.; Cassen, P.; Strom, R. G.

    1977-01-01

    Prior to the flight of the Mariner 10 spacecraft, Mercury was the least investigated and most poorly known terrestrial planet (Kuiper 1970, Devine 1972). Observational difficulties caused by its proximity to the Sun as viewed from Earth caused the planet to remain a small, vague disk exhibiting little surface contrast or details, an object for which only three major facts were known: 1. its bulk density is similar to that of Venus and Earth, much greater than that of Mars and the Moon; 2. its surface reflects electromagnetic radiation at all wavelengths in the same manner as the Moon (taking into account differences in their solar distances); and 3. its rotation period is in 2/3 resonance with its orbital period. Images obtained during the flyby by Mariner 10 on 29 March 1974 (and the two subsequent flybys on 21 September 1974 and 16 March 1975) revealed Mercury's surface in detail equivalent to that available for the Moon during the early 1960's from Earth-based telescopic views. Additionally, however, information was obtained on the planet's mass and size, atmospheric composition and density, charged-particle environment, and infrared thermal radiation from the surface, and most significantly of all, the existence of a planetary magnetic field that is probably intrinsic to Mercury was established. In the following, this new information is summarized together with results from theoretical studies and ground-based observations. In the quantum jumps of knowledge that have been characteristic of "space-age" exploration, the previously obscure body of Mercury has suddenly come into sharp focus. It is very likely a differentiated body, probably contains a large Earth-like iron-rich core, and displays a surface remarkably similar to that of the Moon, which suggests a similar evolutionary history.

  5. Decrease of soil fertility and release of mercury following deforestation in the Andean Amazon, Napo River Valley, Ecuador.

    PubMed

    Mainville, N; Webb, J; Lucotte, M; Davidson, R; Betancourt, O; Cueva, E; Mergler, D

    2006-09-01

    Soil erosion and degradation provoked by deforestation in the Amazon is a global concern, and recent studies propose a link between deforestation, soil erosion and the leaching of naturally occurring mercury (Hg). In the Ecuadorian Amazon, elevated deforestation rates and the proximity of volcanoes could play an important role in soil fertility and soil Hg levels. The goal of this study is to evaluate the impacts of deforestation on Andisol and Inceptisol fertility and Hg levels in the Napo River Valley, Ecuador. Results show a significant decrease in surface soil organic matter (-15% to -70% of C and N) and exchangeable cations (-25% to -60%) in deforested plots. Hg concentrations at the surface (0-5 cm), higher in Andisols (225 ng/g average) than in Inceptisols (95 ng/g average), show a decrease of up to 60% following deforestation. Soil erosion exposes the mineral horizon, a layer with a higher Hg burden, to the elements thus provoking and accelerating Hg leaching. These results suggest that deforestation and the associated Hg leaching could contribute to the fish Hg contamination measured in the Napo River watershed. PMID:16499953

  6. Gaseous mercury emissions from soil following forest loss and land use changes: Field experiments in the United States and Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpi, Anthony; Fostier, Anne H.; Orta, Olivia R.; dos Santos, Jose Carlos; Gittings, Michael

    2014-10-01

    Forest ecosystems are a sink of atmospheric mercury, trapping the metal in the canopy, and storing it in the forest floor after litter fall. Fire liberates a portion of this mercury; however, little is known about the long-term release of mercury post deforestation. We conducted two large-scale experiments to study this phenomenon. In upstate New York, gaseous mercury emissions from soil were monitored continually using a Teflon dynamic surface flux chamber for two-weeks before and after cutting of the canopy on the edge of a deciduous forest. In Brazil, gaseous mercury emissions from soil were monitored in an intact Ombrophilous Open forest and an adjacent field site both before and after the field site was cleared by burning. In the intact forest, gaseous mercury emissions from soil averaged -0.73 ± 1.84 ng m-2 h-1 (24-h monitoring) at the New York site, and 0.33 ± 0.09 ng m-2 h-1 (daytime-only) at the Brazil site. After deforestation, gaseous mercury emissions from soil averaged 9.13 ± 2.08 ng m-2 h-1 in New York and 21.2 ± 0.35 ng m-2 h-1 at the Brazil site prior to burning. Gaseous mercury emissions averaged 74.9 ± 0.73 ng m-2 h-1 after burning of the cut forest in Brazil. Extrapolating our data, measured over several weeks to months, to a full year period, deforested soil is estimated to release an additional 2.30 g ha-1 yr-1 of gaseous mercury to the atmosphere in the Brazilian experiment and 0.41 g ha-1 yr-1 in the New York experiment. In Brazil, this represents an additional 50% of the mercury load released during the fire itself.

  7. Transport mechanisms of soil-bound mercury in the erosion process during rainfall-runoff events.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Yi; Luo, Xiaolin; Zhang, Wei; Wu, Xin; Zhang, Juan; Han, Feng

    2016-08-01

    Soil contamination by mercury (Hg) is a global environmental issue. In watersheds with a significant soil Hg storage, soil erosion during rainfall-runoff events can result in nonpoint source (NPS) Hg pollution and therefore, can extend its environmental risk from soils to aquatic ecosystems. Nonetheless, transport mechanisms of soil-bound Hg in the erosion process have not been explored directly, and how different fractions of soil organic matter (SOM) impact transport is not fully understood. This study investigated transport mechanisms based on rainfall-runoff simulation experiments. The experiments simulated high-intensity and long-duration rainfall conditions, which can produce significant soil erosion and NPS pollution. The enrichment ratio (ER) of total mercury (THg) was the key variable in exploring the mechanisms. The main study findings include the following: First, the ER-sediment flux relationship for Hg depends on soil composition, and no uniform ER-sediment flux function exists for different soils. Second, depending on soil composition, significantly more Hg could be released from a less polluted soil in the early stage of large rainfall events. Third, the heavy fraction of SOM (i.e., the remnant organic matter coating on mineral particles) has a dominant influence on the enrichment behavior and transport mechanisms of Hg, while clay mineral content exhibits a significant, but indirect, influence. The study results imply that it is critical to quantify the SOM composition in addition to total organic carbon (TOC) for different soils in the watershed to adequately model the NPS pollution of Hg and spatially prioritize management actions in a heterogeneous watershed. PMID:27176760

  8. Temporal characterization of mercury accumulation at different trophic levels and implications for metal biomagnification along a coastal food web.

    PubMed

    Cardoso, P G; Pereira, E; Duarte, A C; Azeiteiro, U M

    2014-10-15

    The main goal of this study was to assess temporal mercury variations along an estuarine food web to evaluate the mercury contamination level of the system and the risks that humans are exposed to, due to mercury biomagnification. The highest mercury concentrations in the sediments and primary producers (macrophytes) were observed during winter sampling. Instead, the highest mercury concentrations in the water, suspended particulate matter as well as in the zooplanktonic and suprabenthic communities were observed during summer sampling. Evidences of mercury biomagnification along the food web were corroborated by the positive biomagnification factors, particularly for omnivorous macrobenthic species. Comparing the mercury levels at distinct components with several environmental quality criteria it suggests that sediments, water and edible species (e.g., bivalve Scrobicularia plana and the crustacean Carcinus maenas) presented higher mercury levels than the values accepted by legislation which represent a matter of concern for the environment and human health. PMID:25172612

  9. Mobility and contamination assessment of mercury in coal fly ash, atmospheric deposition, and soil collected from Tianjin, China.

    PubMed

    Wei, Zheng; Wu, Guanghong; Su, Ruixian; Li, Congwei; Liang, Peiyu

    2011-09-01

    Samples of class F coal fly ash (levels I, II, and III), slag, coal, atmospheric deposition, and soils collected from Tianjin, China, were analyzed using U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) Method 3052 and a sequential extraction procedure, to investigate the pollution status and mobility of Hg. The results showed that total mercury (HgT) concentrations were higher in level I fly ash (0.304 µg/g) than in level II and level III fly ash and slag (0.142, 0.147, and 0.052 µg/g, respectively). Total Hg in the atmospheric deposition was higher during the heating season (0.264 µg/g) than the nonheating season (0.135 µg/g). Total Hg contents were higher in suburban area soils than in rural and agricultural areas. High HgT concentrations in suburban area soils may be a result of the deposition of Hg associated with particles emitted from coal-fired power plants. Mercury in fly ash primarily existed as elemental Hg, which accounted for 90.1, 85.3, and 90.6% of HgT in levels I, II, and III fly ash, respectively. Mercury in the deposition existed primarily as sulfide Hg, which accounted for 73.8% (heating season) and 74.1% (nonheating season) of HgT. However, Hg in soils existed primarily as sulfide Hg, organo-chelated Hg and elemental Hg, which accounted for 37.8 to 50.0%, 31.7 to 41.8%, and 13.0 to 23.9% of HgT, respectively. The percentage of elemental Hg in HgT occurred in the order fly ash > atmospheric deposition > soils, whereas organo-chelated Hg and sulfide Hg occurred in the opposite order. The present approach can provide a window for understanding and tracing the source of Hg in the environment in Tianjin and the risk associated with Hg bioaccessibility. PMID:21713969

  10. MERCURY LEVELS IN HARVESTED FISHES FROM FLORIDA GULF COAST MX964229

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project supports the collection of fish tissue samples and associated biological and environmental data from coastal waters of Florida in the Gulf of Mexico to determine total mercury levels and relationship to species, size, age, sex and capture location.

  11. Low-Cost Options for Moderate Levels of Mercury Control

    SciTech Connect

    Sharon Sjostrom

    2006-03-31

    On March 15, 2005, EPA issued the Clean Air Mercury Rule, requiring phased-in reductions of mercury emissions from electric power generators. ADA-ES, Inc., with support from DOE/NETL and industry partners, is conducting evaluations of EPRI's TOXECON II{trademark} process and of high-temperature reagents and sorbents to determine the capabilities of sorbent/reagent injection, including activated carbon, for mercury control on different coals and air emissions control equipment configurations. DOE/NETL targets for total mercury removal are {ge}55% (lignite), {ge}65% (subbituminous), and {ge}80% (bituminous). Based on work done to date at various scales, meeting the removal targets appears feasible. However, work needs to progress to more thoroughly document and test these promising technologies at full scale. This is the final site report for tests conducted at MidAmerican's Louisa Station, one of three sites evaluated in this DOE/NETL program. The other two sites in the program are MidAmerican's Council Bluff Station and Entergy's Independence Station. MidAmerican's Louisa Station burns Powder River Basin (PRB) coal and employs hot-side electrostatic precipitators with flue gas conditioning for particulate control. This part of the testing program evaluated the effect of reagents used in the existing flue gas conditioning on mercury removal.

  12. Tissue levels of mercury in autopsy specimens of liver and kidney

    PubMed Central

    Magos, L.; Bakir, F.; Clarkson, T. W.; Al-Jawad, A. M.; Al-Soffi, M. H.

    1976-01-01

    Fifty-one autopsy specimens of liver were analysed for total mercury. Thirteen specimens contained less than 10 mg/kg of mercury, with a minimum value of 1.4 mg/kg, indicating that death in suspected cases was not always due to lethal exposure to methylmercury. The methylmercury concentration in 28 livers was 10-30 mg/kg. Limited additional estimations have shown that 71% of the liver mercury was organic and that the level of mercury in the liver of a 7-month-old fetus was only 25% of that in the liver of the mother. In a patient who died in hospital with a blood mercury level of 4.1 μg/ml, the liver contained 16.5 mg/kg of mercury. Differences between these results and those found in the outbreak of methylmercury poisoning in Japan are discussed. Any extrapolation of tissue mercury levels in relation to the toxic effects of methylmercury must take account of the intensity and duration of exposure. PMID:1086171

  13. Study on the reduction of atmospheric mercury emissions from mine waste enriched soils through native grass cover in the Mt. Amiata region of Italy.

    PubMed

    Fantozzi, L; Ferrara, R; Dini, F; Tamburello, L; Pirrone, N; Sprovieri, F

    2013-08-01

    Atmospheric mercury emissions from mine-waste enriched soils were measured in order to compare the mercury fluxes of bare soils with those from other soils covered by native grasses. Our research was conducted near Mt. Amiata in central Italy, an area that was one of the largest and most productive mining centers in Europe up into the 1980s. To determine in situ mercury emissions, we used a Plexiglas flux chamber connected to a portable mercury analyzer (Lumex RA-915+). This allowed us to detect, in real time, the mercury vapor in the air, and to correlate this with the meteorological parameters that we examined (solar radiation, soil temperature, and humidity). The highest mercury flux values (8000ngm(-2)h(-1)) were observed on bare soils during the hours of maximum insulation, while lower values (250ngm(-2)h(-1)) were observed on soils covered by native grasses. Our results indicate that two main environmental variables affect mercury emission: solar radiation intensity and soil temperature. The presence of native vegetation, which can shield soil surfaces from incident light, reduced mercury emissions, a result that we attribute to a drop in the efficiency of mercury photoreduction processes rather than to decreases in soil temperature. This finding is consistent with decreases in mercury flux values down to 3500ngm(-2)h(-1), which occurred under cloudy conditions despite high soil temperatures. Moreover, when the soil temperature was 28°C and the vegetation was removed from the experimental site, mercury emissions increased almost four-fold. This increase occurred almost immediately after the grasses were cut, and was approximately eight-fold after 20h. Thus, this study demonstrates that enhancing wild vegetation cover could be an inexpensive and effective approach in fostering a natural, self-renewing reduction of mercury emissions from mercury-contaminated soils. PMID:23477569

  14. Mercury concentrations and distribution in soil, water, mine waste leachates, and air in and around mercury mines in the Big Bend region, Texas, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gray, John E.; Theodorakos, Peter M.; Fey, David L.; Krabbenhoft, David P.

    2015-01-01

    Samples of soil, water, mine waste leachates, soil gas, and air were collected from areas mined for mercury (Hg) and baseline sites in the Big Bend area, Texas, to evaluate potential Hg contamination in the region. Soil samples collected within 300 m of an inactive Hg mine contained elevated Hg concentrations (3.8–11 µg/g), which were considerably higher than Hg in soil collected from baseline sites (0.03–0.05 µg/g) distal (as much as 24 km) from mines. Only three soil samples collected within 300 m of the mine exceeded the probable effect concentration for Hg of 1.06 µg/g, above which harmful effects are likely to be observed in sediment-dwelling organisms. Concentrations of Hg in mine water runoff (7.9–14 ng/L) were generally higher than those found in springs and wells (0.05–3.1 ng/L), baseline streams (1.1–9.7 ng/L), and sources of drinking water (0.63–9.1 ng/L) collected in the Big Bend region. Concentrations of Hg in all water samples collected in this study were considerably below the 2,000 ng/L drinking water Hg guideline and the 770 ng/L guideline recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to protect aquatic wildlife from chronic effects of Hg. Concentrations of Hg in water leachates obtained from leaching of mine wastes varied widely from <0.001 to 760 µg of Hg in leachate/g of sample leached, but only one leachate exceeded the USEPA Hg industrial soil screening level of 31 µg/g. Concentrations of Hg in soil gas collected at mined sites (690–82,000 ng/m3) were highly elevated compared to soil gas collected from baseline sites (1.2–77 ng/m3). However, air collected from mined areas at a height of 2 m above the ground surface contained concentrations of Hg (4.9–64 ng/m3) that were considerably lower than Hg in soil gas from the mined areas. Although concentrations of Hg emitted from mine-contaminated soils and mine wastes were elevated, persistent wind in southwest Texas disperses Hg in the air

  15. Mercury concentrations and distribution in soil, water, mine waste leachates, and air in and around mercury mines in the Big Bend region, Texas, USA.

    PubMed

    Gray, John E; Theodorakos, Peter M; Fey, David L; Krabbenhoft, David P

    2015-02-01

    Samples of soil, water, mine waste leachates, soil gas, and air were collected from areas mined for mercury (Hg) and baseline sites in the Big Bend area, Texas, to evaluate potential Hg contamination in the region. Soil samples collected within 300 m of an inactive Hg mine contained elevated Hg concentrations (3.8-11 µg/g), which were considerably higher than Hg in soil collected from baseline sites (0.03-0.05 µg/g) distal (as much as 24 km) from mines. Only three soil samples collected within 300 m of the mine exceeded the probable effect concentration for Hg of 1.06 µg/g, above which harmful effects are likely to be observed in sediment-dwelling organisms. Concentrations of Hg in mine water runoff (7.9-14 ng/L) were generally higher than those found in springs and wells (0.05-3.1 ng/L), baseline streams (1.1-9.7 ng/L), and sources of drinking water (0.63-9.1 ng/L) collected in the Big Bend region. Concentrations of Hg in all water samples collected in this study were considerably below the 2,000 ng/L drinking water Hg guideline and the 770 ng/L guideline recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to protect aquatic wildlife from chronic effects of Hg. Concentrations of Hg in water leachates obtained from leaching of mine wastes varied widely from <0.001 to 760 µg of Hg in leachate/g of sample leached, but only one leachate exceeded the USEPA Hg industrial soil screening level of 31 µg/g. Concentrations of Hg in soil gas collected at mined sites (690-82,000 ng/m(3)) were highly elevated compared to soil gas collected from baseline sites (1.2-77 ng/m(3)). However, air collected from mined areas at a height of 2 m above the ground surface contained concentrations of Hg (4.9-64 ng/m(3)) that were considerably lower than Hg in soil gas from the mined areas. Although concentrations of Hg emitted from mine-contaminated soils and mine wastes were elevated, persistent wind in southwest Texas disperses Hg in the air within a few meters of the

  16. Total mercury in mushrooms and underlying soil substrate from the Borecka Forest, Northeastern Poland.

    PubMed

    Falandysz, J; Gucia, M; Skwarzec, B; Frankowska, A; Klawikowska, K

    2002-02-01

    Total mercury concentrations were determined by cold-vapor atomic absorption spectroscopy in 240 composite samples of the caps, 240 of the stalks, and 16 of the whole fruiting bodies of 13 species of wild mushrooms and in 256 samples of underlying soil substrate collected from the Borecka Forest and the adjacent area in 1998. The area of the study is a background site with no known local sources of mercury emission. The mercury concentrations of the fruiting bodies varied largely (range between 14 and 14,000 ng/g dry weight) depending on the site and mushroom species investigated, but were less varied in soil samples (between 5 and 86 ng/g dry weight). The fruiting bodies of king bolete (Boletus edulis) showed greatest content of mercury. King bolete and yellow-cracking bolete (Xerocomus subtomentosus) collected from the Borecka Forest both contained in the caps around threefold greater concentrations of mercury than were noted for the same species collected from the surrounding area with 9,900 +/- 2,700 and 3,600 +/- 1,400, and 480 +/- 190 and 160 +/- 70 ng/g dry weight, respectively. Apart from the king bolete, relatively elevated concentrations of mercury were quantified also in a whole fruiting bodies of common puffball (Lycoperdon perlatum) with 3,400 +/- 1,300 ng/g as well as in the caps and stalks of common scaber stalk (Leccinum scabrum) with 1,200 +/- 740 and 1,100 +/- 380 ng/g dry weight. In other species investigated, the mercury concentrations were below 1,000 ng/g dry weight, and the smallest values were noted for crab-scended brittle gills (Russula xerampelina) with 60 +/- 20 in the caps and 40 +/- 20 ng/g dry weight in the stalks. For the species such as larch bolete, bay bolete (Xerocomus badius), yellow-cracking bolete, king bolete, common scaber stalk, fly agaric (Amanita muscaria), crab-scented brittle gills, honey mushroom (Amariella mellea) and safron milk cap (Lactarius deliciosus) a positive correlation (0.01 < p < 0.05) between the mercury

  17. Preconceptional monitoring of mercury levels in hair and blood as a tool for minimizing associated reproductive risks.

    PubMed

    Neuman, Gal; Gareri, Joey; Koren, Gideon

    2014-12-01

    We describe the case of a 41-year-old woman, planning a pregnancy, who had a spontaneous abortion and subsequently was found to have high blood mercury levels. The source of high mercury was in her diet that contained fish as her main source of protein. Serial measurements of mercury in hair and blood allowed the team to determine the exact time when safe levels of mercury were reached, to eliminate elevated mercury levels as a potential cause of spontaneous abortion and to use preconception counseling to minimize the risk for adverse pregnancy outcome. PMID:24831651

  18. Importance of Forest Composition on Mercury Deposition through Litterfall and Accumulation in Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juillerat, J. I.; Ross, D. S.

    2010-12-01

    Upland forests receive greater atmospheric deposition of mercury (Hg) than non-forested areas. In addition to wet deposition of Hg, forests are subjected to Hg deposition in throughfall and litterfall: dry deposition to leaves may be subsequently leached in throughfall; elemental Hg may enter leaves and be later deposited in the leaf litter (litterfall). This research evaluated the importance of forest type on the Total Hg (THg) flux in litterfall and on THg accumulation in organic soil horizons. Eighteen research sites were sampled throughout Vermont, USA. Mercury concentration was measured in senescing leaves of dominant tree species (16 species in total) in three forest types (low-elevation coniferous, mixed, and deciduous/Northern Hardwood forest). Leaf traps were used to measure the litterfall flux. Upper soil horizons were sampled and analyzed for mercury and carbon. Mercury concentration in senescing leaves varied significantly between tree species. Some hardwood species had higher THg concentration in leaves than coniferous species. Striped maple (Acer pensylvanicum) had significantly higher THg concentration than any other species. Total Hg concentration was negatively correlated with leaf height on the tree. Leaf surface-to-weight ratio was positively correlated with THg. The calculated THg flux in litterfall varied from 12 to 28 ug/m2/yr; there was no significant difference between forest types. Results showed an unexpectedly high THg concentration in understory trees. The assumption that needles have greater THg concentration than leaves needs to be revisited; forest structure needs to be taken into account. Total Hg concentration and THg to carbon ratio were consistent within soil horizons but differed among horizons. Similar to other studies, THg concentration was lower in the Oi horizon (litter layer) and peaked in the Oe horizon (fermentation layer) before declining in the humified Oa and/or A horizons. Mineral soil (A horizons) tended to have

  19. An Exploration of Mercury Soils Treatment Technologies for the Y-12 Plant - 13217

    SciTech Connect

    Wrapp, John; Julius, Jonathon; Browning, Debbie; Kane, Michael; Whaley, Katherine; Estes, Chuck; Witzeman, John

    2013-07-01

    There are a number of areas at the Y-12 National Security Complex (Y-12) that have been contaminated with mercury due to historical mercury use and storage. Remediation of these areas is expected to generate large volumes of waste that are Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) characteristically hazardous. These soils will require treatment to meet RCRA Land Disposal Restrictions (LDR) prior to disposal. URS - CH2M Oak Ridge LLC (UCOR) performed a feasibility assessment to evaluate on-site and off-site options for the treatment and disposal of mercury-contaminated soil from the Y-12 Site. The focus of the feasibility assessment was on treatment for disposal at the Environmental Management Waste Management Facility (EMWMF) located on the Oak Ridge Reservation. A two-phase approach was used in the evaluation process of treatment technologies. Phase 1 involved the selection of three vendors to perform treatability studies using their stabilization treatment technology on actual Y-12 soil. Phase II involved a team of waste management specialists performing an in-depth literature review of all available treatment technologies for treating mercury contaminated soil using the following evaluation criteria: effectiveness, feasibility of implementation, and cost. The result of the treatability study and the literature review revealed several viable on-site and off-site treatment options. This paper presents the methodology used by the team in the evaluation of technologies especially as related to EMWMF waste acceptance criteria, the results of the physical treatability studies, and a regulatory analysis for obtaining regulator approval for the treatment/disposal at the EMWMF. (authors)

  20. Increased mercury in forest soils under elevated carbon dioxide

    SciTech Connect

    Natali, Susan M.; Sa_udo-Wilhelmy, Sergio A.; Norby, Richard J; Finzi, Adrien C; Lerdau, Manuel T.

    2008-01-01

    Fossil fuel combustion is the primary anthropogenic source of both CO2 and Hg to the atmosphere. On a global scale, most Hg that enters ecosystems is derived from atmospheric Hg that deposits onto the land surface. Increasing concentrations of atmospheric CO2 may affect Hg deposition to terrestrial systems and storage in soils through CO2-mediated changes in plant and soil properties. We show, using free-air CO2 enrichment (FACE) experiments, that soil Hg concentrations are almost 30% greater under elevated atmospheric CO2 in two temperate forests. There were no direct CO2 effects, however, on litterfall, throughfall or stemflow Hg inputs. Soil Hg was positively correlated with percent soil organic matter (SOM), suggesting that CO2-mediated changes in SOM have influenced soil Hg concentrations. Through its impacts on SOM, elevated atmospheric CO2 may increase the Hg storage capacity of soils and modulate the movement of Hg through the biosphere. Such effects of rising CO2, ones that transcend the typically studied effects on C and nutrient cycling, are an important next phase for research on global environmental change.

  1. LEVEL AND EXTENT OF MERCURY CONTAMINATION IN OREGON LOTIC FISH

    EPA Science Inventory

    As part of the U.S. EPA's EMAP Oregon Pilot project, we conducted a probability survey of 154 Oregon streams and rivers to assess the spatial extent of mercury (Hg) contamination in fish tissue across the state. Samples consisted of whole fish analyses of both small (< 120 mm) a...

  2. Mercury transfer from soil to olive trees. A comparison of three different contaminated sites.

    PubMed

    Higueras, Pablo L; Amorós, José Á; Esbrí, José Maria; Pérez-de-los-Reyes, Caridad; López-Berdonces, Miguel A; García-Navarro, Francisco J

    2016-04-01

    Mercury contents in soil and olive tree leaves have been studied in 69 plots around three different source areas of this element in Spain: Almadén (Ciudad Real), Flix (Tarragona) and Jódar (Jaén). Almadén was the world's largest cinnabar (HgS) mining district and was active until 2003, Flix is the oldest Spanish chlor-alkali plant (CAP) and has been active from 1898 to the present day and Jódar is a decommissioned CAP that was active for 14 years (1977-1991). Total mercury contents have been measured by high-frequency modulation atomic absorption spectrometry with Zeeman effect (ZAAS-HFM) in the soils and olive tree leaves from the three studied areas. The average soil contents range from 182 μg kg(-1) in Flix to 23,488 μg kg(-1) in Almadén, while the average leaf content ranges from 161 μg kg(-1) in Jódar to 1213 μg kg(-1) in Almadén. Despite the wide range of data, a relationship between soil-leaf contents has been identified: in Almadén and Jódar, multiplicative (bilogarithmic) models show significant correlations (R = 0.769 and R = 0.484, respectively). Significant correlations were not identified between soil and leaf contents in Flix. The continuous activity of the Flix CAP, which remains open today, can explain the different uptake patterns for mercury, which is mainly atmospheric in origin, in comparison to the other two sites, where activity ceased more than 10 years ago and only soil uptake patterns based on the Michaelis-Menten enzymatic model curve are observed. PMID:25801370

  3. Simultaneous removal of PCDD/Fs, pentachlorophenol and mercury from contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Hung, Pao-Chen; Chang, Shu-Hao; Ou-Yang, Chia-Chien; Chang, Moo-Been

    2016-02-01

    Pentachlorophenol (PCP), polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), and mercury were simultaneously removed from heavily contaminated soil using a continuous pilot-scale thermal system (CPTS). Operating the system at 700 °C with 22 min of retention time ensured that the residual contaminants in remediated soil are lower in concentration than the soil standards of Taiwan EPA require. Both PCP and PCDD/Fs are effectively destroyed during the treatment at high temperatures in the CPTS, but significant dechlorination of PCDD/Fs is also found, resulting in lower net destruction efficiencies of TCDD/F and PeCDD/F-congeners, compared with those of highly chlorinated Hx-, Hp- and OCDD/F congeners. Moreover, 2,3,7,8-TetraCDD is significantly formed if the retention time is not long enough for total destruction. Inadequate reaction time (or retention time) even may lead to a rise in TEQ-value due to incomplete dechlorination. Mercury is significantly desorbed from contaminated soil and discharged through the exhaust. For PCP and PCDD/Fs, the exhaust discharge percentages including both the remediated soil and the exhaust are <0.03% and 1.14% of the input, respectively, achieved with 700 °C and 33 min retention time. In contrast, some 97.8% of input mercury rate is desorbed and discharged via the exhaust, so that the latter should be carefully cleaned via efficient air pollution control devices, whereas this contribution focuses on the conditions required for reaching adequate soil cleaning. PMID:26347926

  4. A reactive transport model for mercury fate in soil--application to different anthropogenic pollution sources.

    PubMed

    Leterme, Bertrand; Blanc, Philippe; Jacques, Diederik

    2014-11-01

    Soil systems are a common receptor of anthropogenic mercury (Hg) contamination. Soils play an important role in the containment or dispersion of pollution to surface water, groundwater or the atmosphere. A one-dimensional model for simulating Hg fate and transport for variably saturated and transient flow conditions is presented. The model is developed using the HP1 code, which couples HYDRUS-1D for the water flow and solute transport to PHREEQC for geochemical reactions. The main processes included are Hg aqueous speciation and complexation, sorption to soil organic matter, dissolution of cinnabar and liquid Hg, and Hg reduction and volatilization. Processes such as atmospheric wet and dry deposition, vegetation litter fall and uptake are neglected because they are less relevant in the case of high Hg concentrations resulting from anthropogenic activities. A test case is presented, assuming a hypothetical sandy soil profile and a simulation time frame of 50 years of daily atmospheric inputs. Mercury fate and transport are simulated for three different sources of Hg (cinnabar, residual liquid mercury or aqueous mercuric chloride), as well as for combinations of these sources. Results are presented and discussed with focus on Hg volatilization to the atmosphere, Hg leaching at the bottom of the soil profile and the remaining Hg in or below the initially contaminated soil layer. In the test case, Hg volatilization was negligible because the reduction of Hg(2+) to Hg(0) was inhibited by the low concentration of dissolved Hg. Hg leaching was mainly caused by complexation of Hg(2+) with thiol groups of dissolved organic matter, because in the geochemical model used, this reaction only had a higher equilibrium constant than the sorption reactions. Immobilization of Hg in the initially polluted horizon was enhanced by Hg(2+) sorption onto humic and fulvic acids (which are more abundant than thiols). Potential benefits of the model for risk management and remediation of

  5. Study on the reduction of atmospheric mercury emissions from mine waste enriched soils through native grass cover in the Mt. Amiata region of Italy

    SciTech Connect

    Fantozzi, L.; Dini, F.; Tamburello, L.; Pirrone, N.; Sprovieri, F.

    2013-08-15

    Atmospheric mercury emissions from mine-waste enriched soils were measured in order to compare the mercury fluxes of bare soils with those from other soils covered by native grasses. Our research was conducted near Mt. Amiata in central Italy, an area that was one of the largest and most productive mining centers in Europe up into the 1980s. To determine in situ mercury emissions, we used a Plexiglas flux chamber connected to a portable mercury analyzer (Lumex RA-915+). This allowed us to detect, in real time, the mercury vapor in the air, and to correlate this with the meteorological parameters that we examined (solar radiation, soil temperature, and humidity). The highest mercury flux values (8000 ng m{sup −2} h{sup −1}) were observed on bare soils during the hours of maximum insulation, while lower values (250 ng m{sup −2} h{sup −1}) were observed on soils covered by native grasses. Our results indicate that two main environmental variables affect mercury emission: solar radiation intensity and soil temperature. The presence of native vegetation, which can shield soil surfaces from incident light, reduced mercury emissions, a result that we attribute to a drop in the efficiency of mercury photoreduction processes rather than to decreases in soil temperature. This finding is consistent with decreases in mercury flux values down to 3500 ng m{sup −2} h{sup −1}, which occurred under cloudy conditions despite high soil temperatures. Moreover, when the soil temperature was 28 °C and the vegetation was removed from the experimental site, mercury emissions increased almost four-fold. This increase occurred almost immediately after the grasses were cut, and was approximately eight-fold after 20 h. Thus, this study demonstrates that enhancing wild vegetation cover could be an inexpensive and effective approach in fostering a natural, self-renewing reduction of mercury emissions from mercury-contaminated soils. -- Highlights: ► Mercury air/surface exchange

  6. Consumption of tomato products is associated with lower blood mercury levels in Inuit preschool children.

    PubMed

    Gagné, Doris; Lauzière, Julie; Blanchet, Rosanne; Vézina, Carole; Vaissière, Emilie; Ayotte, Pierre; Turgeon O'Brien, Huguette

    2013-01-01

    Some evidence suggests that various diet components and nutrients, including vegetables, fruit and food-derived antioxidants, could mitigate contaminant exposure and/or adverse health effects of contaminants. To examine the effect of the consumption of tomato products on blood mercury levels in Inuit preschool children, 155 Inuit children (25.0±9.1months) were recruited from 2006-2008 in Nunavik childcare centers (northern Québec, Canada). Food frequency questionnaires were completed at home and at the childcare center, and total blood mercury concentration was measured by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Multivariate regression analysis was performed after multiple imputation. The median blood concentration of mercury was 9.5nmol/L. Age, duration of breastfeeding, annual consumption frequency of seal meat, and monthly consumption frequency of tomato products were significant predictors of blood mercury levels, whereas annual consumption frequencies of beluga muktuk, walrus, Arctic char, and caribou meat were not. Each time a participant consumed tomato products during the month before the interview was associated with a 4.6% lower blood mercury level (p=0.0005). All other significant predictors in the model were positively associated with blood mercury levels. Further studies should explore interactions between consumption of healthy store-bought foods available in Arctic regions and contaminant exposure. PMID:23127601

  7. Long-term mercury dynamics in UK soils.

    PubMed

    Tipping, E; Wadsworth, R A; Norris, D A; Hall, J R; Ilyin, I

    2011-12-01

    A model assuming first-order losses by evasion and leaching was used to evaluate Hg dynamics in UK soils since 1850. Temporal deposition patterns of Hg were constructed from literature information. Inverse modelling indicated that 30% of 898 rural sites receive Hg only from the global circulation, while in 51% of cases local deposition exceeds global. Average estimated deposition is 16 μg Hg m(-2) a(-1) to rural soils, 19 μg Hg m(-2) a(-1) to rural and non-rural soils combined. UK soils currently hold 2490 tonnes of reactive Hg, of which 2140 tonnes are due to anthropogenic deposition, mostly local in origin. Topsoil currently releases 5.1 tonnes of Hg(0) per annum to the atmosphere, about 50% more than the anthropogenic flux. Sorptive retention of Hg in the lower soil exerts a strong control on surface water Hg concentrations. Following decreases in inputs, soil Hg concentrations are predicted to decline over hundreds of years. PMID:21889245

  8. Low-Cost Options for Moderate Levels of Mercury Control

    SciTech Connect

    Sharon Sjostrom

    2008-02-09

    This is the final technical report for a three-site project that is part of an overall program funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE/NETL) and industry partners to obtain the necessary information to assess the feasibility and costs of controlling mercury from coal-fired utility plants. This report summarizes results from tests conducted at MidAmerican's Louisa Generating Station and Entergy's Independence Steam Electric Station (ISES) and sorbent screening at MidAmerican's Council Bluffs Energy Center (CBEC) (subsequently renamed Walter Scott Energy Center (WSEC)). Detailed results for Independence and Louisa are presented in the respective Topical Reports. As no full-scale testing was conducted at CBEC, screening updates were provided in the quarterly updates to DOE. ADA-ES, Inc., with support from DOE/NETL, EPRI, and other industry partners, has conducted evaluations of EPRI's TOXECON II{trademark} process and of high-temperature reagents and sorbents to determine the capabilities of sorbent/reagent injection, including activated carbon, for mercury control on different coals and air emissions control equipment configurations. An overview of each plant configuration is presented: (1) MidAmerican's Louisa Generating Station burns Powder River Basin (PRB) coal in its 700-MW Unit 1 and employs hot-side electrostatic precipitators (ESPs) with flue gas conditioning for particulate control. This part of the testing program evaluated the effect of reagents used in the existing flue gas conditioning on mercury removal. (2) MidAmerican's Council Bluffs Energy Center typically burns PRB coal in its 88-MW Unit 2. It employs a hot-side ESP for particulate control. Solid sorbents were screened for hot-side injection. (3) Entergy's Independence Steam Electric Station typically burns PRB coal in its 880-MW Unit 2. Various sorbent injection tests were conducted on 1/8 to 1/32 of the flue gas stream either within or in front of one

  9. ECOLOGICAL SOIL SCREENING LEVELS FOR SOIL INVERTEBRATES AND PLANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological Soil Screening Levels (Eco-SSLs) are being developed for 24 inorganic and inorganic chemicals for soil invertebrates and plants using procedures developed by a Task Group of the USEPA Eco-SSL Work Group. The Eco-SSL Work Group is a collaboration among USEPA, DoD, DOE, ...

  10. The Effect of Wildfire on Soil Mercury Concentrations in Southern California Watersheds

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Marcia; Mendez, Carolina B.; Navarro, Bridget; Lopez, Sonya; Jay, Jennifer A.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) stored in vegetation and soils is known to be released to the atmosphere during wildfires, increasing atmospheric stores and altering terrestrial budgets. Increased erosion and transport of sediments is well-documented in burned watersheds, both immediately post-fire and as the watershed recovers; however, understanding post-fire mobilization of soil Hg within burned watersheds remains elusive. The goal of the current study is to better understand the impact of wildfire on soil-bound Hg during the immediate post-fire period as well as during recovery, in order to assess the potential for sediment-driven transport to and within surface waters in burned watersheds. Soils were collected from three southern California watersheds of similar vegetation and soil characteristics that experienced wildfire. Sampling in one of these watersheds was extended for several seasons (1.5 years) in order to investigate temporal changes in soil Hg concentrations. Laboratory analysis included bulk soil total Hg concentrations and total organic carbon of burned and unburned samples. Soils were also fractionated into a subset of grain sizes with analysis of Hg on each fraction. Low Hg concentrations were observed in surface soils immediately post-fire. Accumulation of Hg coincident with moderate vegetative recovery was observed in the burned surface soils 1 year following the fire, and mobilization was also noted during the second winter (rainy) season. Hg concentrations were highest in the fine-grained fraction of unburned soils; however, in the burned soils, the distribution of soil-bound Hg was less influenced by grain size. The accelerated accumulation of Hg observed in the burned soils, along with the elevated risk of erosion, could result in increased delivery of organic- or particulate-bound Hg to surface waters in post-fire systems. PMID:20936165

  11. Mysterious diel cycles of mercury emission from soils held in the dark at constant temperature

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Hong; Kuiken, Todd; Lindberg, Steven Eric

    2008-01-01

    It is well known that mercury (Hg) emission from soils is largely controlled by solar radiation and soil temperature, exhibiting diel cycles that closely follow diel variations of solar radiation. To study soil Hg emission processes, we conducted experiments by measuring soil Hg emission fluxes under controlled conditions in the laboratory with a dynamic flux chamber using outside ambient air as flushing air. Unexpectedly, we observed consistent, recurring diel cycles of Hg emissions from dry soils held at constant temperature in the dark in our laboratory. The peaks of the emissions also seemed subject to some seasonal variation and to respond to local weather conditions with lower flux peaks in wintertime and on cloudy or rainy days. Finally, much lower soil Hg emission fluxes were observed in the presence of Hg-free zero air than in the presence of outside ambient air. It is hypothesized that some unidentified air-borne substance(s) in the ambient air might be responsible for the observed diel cycles of soil Hg emission. Further elaborate mechanistic investigations are clearly needed to test the initial working hypotheses and uncover the cause for this interesting, mysterious phenomenon. The present work and recent finding of enhancement of Hg emissions from soil and mineral particles by O3 seem to point to a research need to probe the possible role of near-ground atmospheric chemistry in Hg air/soil exchange.

  12. Solubility and changes of mercury binding forms in contaminated soils after immobilization treatment

    SciTech Connect

    Biester, H.; Zimmer, H.

    1998-09-15

    Mobility at different pH and binding forms of mercury (Hg) have been investigated in three Hg-contaminated soils after immobilization treatment with alkali-polysulfide (APS) and trimercapto-s-triazine trisodium salt solution (TMT). Changes of solid-phase Hg binding forms after immobilization were determined by Hg pyrolysis. Hg concentrations in the water extracts of all samples increased after treatments due to the formation of soluble mercury sulfides (APS treatment), and the mobilization of humic acid bound Hg at the high pH of the reagents. In contrast, Hg concentrations decreased sharply at low pH due to decomposition of soluble mercury sulfides and precipitation of humic acid-bound Hg. Inorganic Hg compounds such as Hg{sup 0} or HgCl{sub 2} are effectively transformed to mercury sulfides by APS treatment, whereas TMT could transform HgCl{sub 2} but not Hg{sup 0}. Both reagents were found to affect humic acid bound Hg by way of increasing Hg desorption temperatures, although APS was found not to desorb Hg completely from humic acids and TMT-Hg complexes are actually incorporated into humic acids.

  13. Use of implantable pellets to administer low levels of methyl mercury to fish

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arnold, B.S.; Jagoe, C.H.; Gross, T.S.

    1999-01-01

    Implantable pellets of methyl mercury chloride were tested in Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) to appraise the effectiveness of the method for chronic studies of mercury. Two dosing regimes of 15 and 1.5 grams/CH3HgCl pellet (test 1) and 1 and 0.1 grams/pellet (test 2-3) of methyl mercury chloride were used in three tests. Additional pellets containing only matrix were used as controls. The pellets were inserted into the peritoneal cavity along with a microchip for identification. Three methods of incision closure: sutures and two types of surgical glue, were tested. Pellets used in test one released the dose too fast, resulting in premature death of the fish. Results from test 2 and 3 show blood mercury concentrations over time and tissue levels at necropsy consistent with dose suggesting that this is a viable method of dosing fish.

  14. Continuous atomic spectrometric measurement of ambient levels of sulfur dioxide in air by mercury displacement detection

    SciTech Connect

    Marshall, G.; Midgley, D.

    1982-08-01

    The analytical atomic spectrometric technique of mercury displacement detection has been adapted so that sulfur dioxide can be determined at natural background levels in ambient air on a continuous basis with a 90% response time of 1-2 min. Sample air is drawn into the reaction vessel containing mercury (I) ion reagent and any sulfur dioxide present reacts to form elemental mercury which is measured, after being swept out of the solution by the same flow of sample air, by a mercury vapor detector. Reagent is continuously pumped through the analyzer and the instrument is calibrated with a permeation tube calibrator. The apparatus has a linear concentration range up to 100 ppB sulfur dioxide; this is much lower than can be obtained with existing commerical instruments. The apparatus is very precise and 6, 11, and 20 ppB sulfur dioxide can be measured with coefficients of variation of 1-2%.

  15. Mercury speciation in floodplain soils and sediments along a contaminated river transect

    SciTech Connect

    Wallschlaeger, D.; Desai, M.V.M.; Spengler, M.; Wilken, R.D.

    1998-09-01

    A novel mercury-specific sequential extraction procedure (SEP) for the assessment of mercury (Hg) speciation in soils and sediments, with emphasis on studying the interaction between Hg and organic matter (OM), was developed and tested. It was applied to determine Hg speciation in floodplain topsoils and surface sediments along the Hg-contaminated part of the river Elbe, and to simultaneously derive some information on the (re)mobilization potentials for Hg from these matrices. The majority of the total Hg in the ecosystem today is bound in the floodplains, which also still geographically reflect the historic emission record. Most of the Hg in both matrices is bound strongly to OM, suggesting low availability. However, distinct differences between Hg speciation in the floodplain soils and sediments were also discovered. Mercury deposited in the floodplains shows speciation patterns that indicate stronger fixation compared with Hg in the sediments. This difference is attributed to the association of Hg with larger quantities of OM, which presumably also has higher molecular weight (MW). By comparison, Hg in the sediments was distributed among weaker binding forms, which are more likely to liberate Hg. Particularly, sediments showed a total lack of sulfidic binding forms for Hg. Pronounced geographical trends were detected in the Hg speciation along the river transect, with a general downstream shift from weaker to stronger binding forms, probably due to increased association with OM. These studies indicate that Hg speciation in riverine ecosystems is dynamic and reflects the chemical mechanisms underlying (bio) geochemical processes like distribution and transport.

  16. Seasonal variability of mercury concentration in soils, buds and leaves of Acer platanoides and Tilia platyphyllos in central Poland.

    PubMed

    Kowalski, Artur; Frankowski, Marcin

    2016-05-01

    In this paper, we present the results of mercury concentration in soils, buds and leaves of maple (Acer platanoides-Ap) and linden (Tilia platyphyllos-Tp) collected in four periods of the growing season of trees, i.e. in April (IV), June (VI), August (VIII) and November (IX) in 2013, from the area of Poznań city (Poland). The highest average concentration of mercury for 88 samples was determined in soils and it equaled 65.8 ± 41.7 ng g(-1) (range 14.5-238.9 ng g(-1)); lower average concentration was found in Ap samples (n = 66): 55.4 ± 18.1 ng g(-1) (range 26.5-106.9 ng g(-1)); in Tp samples 50.4 ± 15.8 ng g(-1) (range 23.1-88.7 ng g(-1)) and in 22 samples of Tp buds 40.8 ± 22.7 ng g(-1) (range 12.4-98.7 ng g(-1)) and Ap buds 28.2 ± 13.6 ng g(-1) (range 8.0-59.5 ng g(-1)). Based on the obtained results, it was observed that the highest concentration of mercury in soils occurred in the centre of Poznań city (95.5 ± 39.1 ng g(-1)), and it was two times higher than the concentration of mercury in other parts of the city. Similar dependencies were not observed for the leaf samples of Ap and Tp. It was found that mercury concentrations in the soil and leaves of maple and linden were different depending on the period of the growing season (April to November). Mercury content in the examined samples was higher in the first two research periods (April IV, June VI), and then, in the following periods, the accumulation of mercury decreased both in soil and leaf samples of the two tree species. There was no correlation found between mercury concentration in leaves and mercury concentration in soils during the four research periods (April-November). When considering the transfer coefficient, it was observed that the main source of mercury in leaves is the mercury coming from the atmosphere. PMID:26846237

  17. Distribution of mercury in chemical fractions of contaminated urban soils of Middle Amur, Russia.

    PubMed

    Kot, Fyodor S; Matyushkina, Lira A

    2002-10-01

    The distribution of mercury (Hg) in fractions of urban soils from two industrial cities in the Russian Far East which are subject to varying degrees of Hg contamination was examined. The speciation scheme applied was based on routine chemical extraction methods used in soil investigations. Such an approach enables the Hg data to be brought into correlation with soil basic fractions and the fate of Hg bound to different soil components to be followed. Humic acids and a non-hydrolysable residue (humin), i.e. the soil fractions most refractory to microbiotic and chemical attack, were found to be principal Hg repositories in the soils studied. This pattern was equally observed for slightly, moderately and heavily contaminated soils. Hymatomelanic acids do not appear to be an efficient Hg concentrator. In heavily contaminated soils, Hg concentrations were evident in mobile fractions of fulvic acids as well as in those fractions extracted by H2O and 0.05 M Na2-EDTA pH 3. A portion of Hg extracted by 1 M HCl increased in lower horizons, reflecting relatively weakly bound Hg. PMID:12400936

  18. The development and testing of technologies for the remediation of mercury-contaminated soils, Task 7.52. Topical report, December 1992--December 1993

    SciTech Connect

    Stepan, D.J.; Fraley, R.H.; Charlton, D.S.

    1994-02-01

    The release of elemental mercury into the environment from manometers that are used in the measurement of natural gas flow through pipelines has created a potentially serious problem for the gas industry. Regulations, particularly the Land Disposal Restrictions (LDR), have had a major impact on gas companies dealing with mercury-contaminated soils. After the May 8, 1993, LDR deadline extension, gas companies were required to treat mercury-contaminated soils by designated methods to specified levels prior to disposal in landfills. In addition, gas companies must comply with various state regulations that are often more stringent than the LDR. The gas industry is concerned that the LDRs do not allow enough viable options for dealing with their mercury-related problems. The US Environmental Protection Agency has specified the Best Demonstrated Available Technology (BDAT) as thermal roasting or retorting. However, the Agency recognizes that treatment of certain wastes to the LDR standards may not always be achievable and that the BDAT used to set the standard may be inappropriate. Therefore, a Treatability Variance Process for remedial actions was established (40 Code of Federal Regulations 268.44) for the evaluation of alternative remedial technologies. This report presents evaluations of demonstrations for three different remedial technologies: a pilot-scale portable thermal treatment process, a pilot-scale physical separation process in conjunction with chemical leaching, and a bench-scale chemical leaching process.

  19. Water and soil biotic relations in Mercury distribution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siegel, S. M.; Siegel, B. Z.; Puerner, N.; Speitel, T.; Thorarinsson, F.

    1975-01-01

    The distribution of Hg is considered both in terms of its availability in soil fractions and the relationship between Hg in plant samples and Hg in ambient soils or other supportive media. The plants were grouped by habitat into epipedic-epiphytic (mosses, lichens) and endopedic-aquatic-marine (Basidiomycetes and algae) samples; nonvascular and vascular forms were also distinguished. Sources included Alaska, Hawaii, New England and Iceland. Brief consideration was also given to Hg distribution in a plant-animal-soil community. Data were expressed in terms of plant Hg content and plant substratum concentration ratio. Average Hg contents and concentration ratios, and modal ranges for the ratios were determined. The results showed similar average Hg contents in all groups (126 to 199 ppb) but a low value (84 ppb) in the lichens; terrestrial forms had ratios of 3.5 to 7.6 whereas the marine algae yielded a figure of 78.7. A secondary mode in the range 0 to 0.1 appeared only in the Alaska-New England Group, over 500 km distant from active thermal sites. Evidence for both exclusion and concentration behavior was obtained.

  20. Chronic effects of low-level mercury and cadmium to goldfish (Carassius Auratus)

    SciTech Connect

    Westerman, A.G.

    1984-01-01

    During this five and one half year investigation, experiments were performed to determine the effects of nanogram levels of cadmium and mercury on reproductive performance, growth, and tissue residues of goldfish. In addition, embryo-larval bioassays were conducted on these metals to compare the effects of a short-term exposure to a sensitive life-cycle stage (i.e., eggs and larvae) with a sustained exposure to a relatively insensitive life-cycle period (i.e., adult). Reproduction was blocked by the long-term exposure to 0.25 ..mu..g/l mercury and 0.27 ..mu..g/l cadmium. Over the 1972 days, the control fish spawned on eleven occasions, but the experimentals failed to spawn. The metal-induced reproductive impairment continued in the experimentals even after six months in clean water. Growth of the populations exposed to mercury and cadmium was significantly less than that of the control population (P < 0.001). The mercury, cadmium and control populations grew by 229%, 232% and 353%, respectively. Mercury and cadmium continuously accumulated in fish tissues over the entire 1789 days of whole body exposure. Despite exposure to mercury as inorganic metal, organomercury also accumula

  1. Achieving very low mercury levels in refinery wastewater by membrane filtration.

    SciTech Connect

    Urgun Demirtas, M.; Benda, P.; Gillenwater, P. S.; Negri, M. C.; Xiong, H.; Snyder, S. W.

    2012-05-15

    Microfiltration (MF), ultrafiltration (UF), nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) membranes were evaluated for their ability to achieve the world's most stringent Hg discharge criterion (<1.3 ng/L) in an oil refinery's wastewater. The membrane processes were operated at three different pressures to demonstrate the potential for each membrane technology to achieve the targeted effluent mercury concentrations. The presence of mercury in the particulate form in the refinery wastewater makes the use of MF and UF membrane technologies more attractive in achieving very low mercury levels in the treated wastewater. Both NF and RO were also able to meet the target mercury concentration at lower operating pressures (20.7 bar). However, higher operating pressures ({ge}34.5 bar) had a significant effect on NF and RO flux and fouling rates, as well as on permeate quality. SEM images of the membranes showed that pore blockage and narrowing were the dominant fouling mechanisms for the MF membrane while surface coverage was the dominant fouling mechanism for the other membranes. The correlation between mercury concentration and particle size distribution was also investigated to understand mercury removal mechanisms by membrane filtration. The mean particle diameter decreased with filtration from 1.1 {+-} 0.0 {micro}m to 0.74 {+-} 0.2 {micro}m after UF.

  2. Comparative observations on levels of mercury in scalp hair of humans from different Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Renzoni, Aristeo

    1992-09-01

    Following the Minamata events, an extraordinary number of studies concerning mercury toxicity and human health have been undertaken. Particular attention has been given to the evaluation of the dose-response relationship, i.e., the body burden at which (evaluated through the mercury analyses in blood or hair) the risk of poisoning begins. The results of a comparative study concerning levels of mercury in the hair of fishermen living in small islands who eat seafood more than four times per week show that in two areas only, and only in a few cases in these areas, the mercury in the hair exceeds the limit at which a possible risk could exist. In fact, the limit of 50 mg/g of total mercury in the hair (indicated as the lower limit above which a possible risk could occur) is surpassed by nine fishermen out of a total of 39 at station 1 and by four fishermen out of a total of 26 at station 3. The average value at station 1 is 36.38 mg/g and that at station 3 is 30.31 mg. Many countries have set legal limits of mercury for seafood, but evidently the system does not offer a true protection for man. Only the provisional tolerable weekly intake (PTWI), as repeatedly suggested by WHO, should be considered the best guideline to prevent possibly harmful consequences.

  3. Brain and tissue levels of mercury after chronic methylmercury exposure in the monkey

    SciTech Connect

    Rice, D.C.

    1989-01-01

    Estimated half-lives of mercury following methylmercury exposure in humans are 52-93 d for whole body and 49-164 d for blood. In its most recent 1980 review, the World Health Organization concluded that there was no evidence to suggest that brain half-life differed from whole-body half-life. In the present study, female monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) were dosed for at least 1.7 yr with 10, 25, or 50 micrograms/kg.d of mercury as methylmercuric chloride. Dosing was discontinued, and blood half-life was determined to be about 14 d. Approximately 230 d after cessation of dosing, monkeys were sacrificed and organ and regional brain total mercury levels determined. One monkey that died while still being dosed had brain mercury levels three times higher than levels in blood. Theoretical calculations were performed assuming steady-state brain:blood ratios of 3, 5, or 10. Brain mercury levels were at least three orders of magnitude higher than those predicted by assuming the half-life in brain to be the same as that in blood. Estimated half-lives in brain were between 56 (brain:blood ratio of 3) and 38 (brain:blood ratio of 10) d. In addition, there was a dose-dependent difference in half-lives for some brain regions. These data clearly indicate that brain half-life is considerably longer than blood half-life in the monkey under conditions of chronic dosing.

  4. Electronic Characterization of Defects in Narrow Gap Semiconductors-Comparison of Electronic Energy Levels and Formation Energies in Mercury Cadmium Telluride, Mercury Zinc Telluride, and Mercury Zinc Selenide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patterson, James D.

    1996-01-01

    We have used a Green's function technique to calculate the energy levels and formation energy of deep defects in the narrow gap semiconductors mercury cadmium telluride (MCT), mercury zinc telluride (MZT) and mercury zinc selenide (MZS). The formation energy is calculated from the difference between the total energy with an impurity cluster and the total energy for the perfect crystal. Substitutional (including antisite), interstitial (self and foreign), and vacancy deep defects are considered. Relaxation effects are calculated (with molecular dynamics). By use of a pseudopotential, we generalize the ideal vacancy model so as to be able to consider relaxation for vacancies. Different charge states are considered and the charged state energy shift (as computed by a modified Haldane-Anderson model) can be twice that due to relaxation. Different charged states for vacancies were not calculated to have much effect on the formation energy. For all cases we find deep defects in the energy gap only for cation site s-like orbitals or anion site p-like orbitals, and for the substitutional case only the latter are appreciably effected by relaxation. For most cases for MCT, MZT, MZS, we consider x (the concentration of Cd or Zn) in the range appropriate for a band gap of 0.1 eV. For defect energy levels, the absolute accuracy of our results is limited, but the precision is good, and hence chemical trends are accurately predicted. For the same reason, defect formation energies are more accurately predicted than energy level position. We attempt, in Appendix B, to calculate vacancy formation energies using relatively simple chemical bonding ideas due to Harrison. However, these results are only marginally accurate for estimating vacancy binding energies. Appendix C lists all written reports and publications produced for the grant. We include abstracts and a complete paper that summarizes our work which is not yet available.

  5. Mobility of Four Common Mercury Species in Model and Natural Unsaturated Soils.

    PubMed

    Gai, Ke; Hoelen, Thomas P; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Lowry, Gregory V

    2016-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) occurs as a myriad of species in environmental media, each with different physicochemical properties. The influence of Hg speciation on its transport in unsaturated soils is not well studied. Transport of four Hg species (dissolved inorganic Hg (II) species, a prepared Hg(II) and dissolved organic matter (DOM) complex, Hg(0), and HgS nanoparticles) was measured in sand and soil packed columns with partial water saturation under simulated rainfall (low ionic strength solution without DOM) and landfill leachate (high DOM content and high ionic strength) influent conditions. The Hg(II)-DOM species had the highest mobility among the four Hg species evaluated, and HgS particles (∼230 nm hydrodynamic diameter) had the poorest mobility, for all soil and influent conditions tested. The addition of 2 wt % clay particles to sand greatly retarded the transport of all Hg species, especially under simulated rainfall. DOM in the column influent facilitated the transport of all four Hg species in model and natural soils. For simulated rainfall, the transport trends observed in model sands were consistent with those measured in a sandy soil, except that the mobility of dissolved inorganic Hg(II) species was significantly lower in natural soils. For simulated rainfall, Hg transport was negligible in a high organic content (∼3.72 wt %) soil for all species except Hg-DOM. This work suggests that the Hg-DOM species presents the greatest potential for vertical migration to groundwater, especially with DOM in the influent solution. PMID:26949999

  6. Mercury deposition and re-emission pathways in boreal forest soils investigated with Hg isotope signatures.

    PubMed

    Jiskra, Martin; Wiederhold, Jan G; Skyllberg, Ulf; Kronberg, Rose-Marie; Hajdas, Irka; Kretzschmar, Ruben

    2015-06-16

    Soils comprise the largest terrestrial mercury (Hg) pool in exchange with the atmosphere. To predict how anthropogenic emissions affect global Hg cycling and eventually human Hg exposure, it is crucial to understand Hg deposition and re-emission of legacy Hg from soils. However, assessing Hg deposition and re-emission pathways remains difficult because of an insufficient understanding of the governing processes. We measured Hg stable isotope signatures of radiocarbon-dated boreal forest soils and modeled atmospheric Hg deposition and re-emission pathways and fluxes using a combined source and process tracing approach. Our results suggest that Hg in the soils was dominantly derived from deposition of litter (∼90% on average). The remaining fraction was attributed to precipitation-derived Hg, which showed increasing contributions in older, deeper soil horizons (up to 27%) indicative of an accumulation over decades. We provide evidence for significant Hg re-emission from organic soil horizons most likely caused by nonphotochemical abiotic reduction by natural organic matter, a process previously not observed unambiguously in nature. Our data suggest that Histosols (peat soils), which exhibit at least seasonally water-saturated conditions, have re-emitted up to one-third of previously deposited Hg back to the atmosphere. Re-emission of legacy Hg following reduction by natural organic matter may therefore be an important pathway to be considered in global models, further supporting the need for a process-based assessment of land/atmosphere Hg exchange. PMID:25946594

  7. Soil as an archive of coal-fired power plant mercury deposition.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez Martín, José Antonio; Nanos, Nikos

    2016-05-01

    Mercury pollution is a global environmental problem that has serious implications for human health. One of the most important sources of anthropogenic mercury emissions are coal-burning power plants. Hg accumulations in soil are associated with their atmospheric deposition. Our study provides the first assessment of soil Hg on the entire Spanish surface obtained from one sampling protocol. Hg spatial distribution was analysed with topsoil samples taken from 4000 locations in a regular sampling grid. The other aim was to use geostatistical techniques to verify the extent of soil contamination by Hg and to evaluate presumed Hg enrichment near the seven Spanish power plants with installed capacity above 1000 MW. The Hg concentration in Spanish soil fell within the range of 1-7564 μg kg(-1) (mean 67.2) and 50% of the samples had a concentration below 37 μg kg(-1). Evidence for human activity was found near all the coal-fired power plants, which reflects that metals have accumulated in the basin over many years. Values over 1000 μg kg(-1) have been found in soils in the vicinity of the Aboño, Soto de Ribera and Castellon power plants. However, soil Hg enrichment was detectable only close to the emission source, within an approximate range of only 15 km from the power plants. We associated this effect with airborne emissions and subsequent depositions as the potential distance through fly ash deposition. Hg associated with particles of ash tends to be deposited near coal combustion sources. PMID:26808251

  8. Pituitary gland levels of mercury, selenium, iron, and zinc in an Alzheimer`s disease study

    SciTech Connect

    Cornett, C.R.; Markesbery, W.R.; Wekstein, D.R.; Ehmann, W.D.

    1996-12-31

    Mercury, iron, selenium, and zinc imbalances have been observed in comparisons between Alzheimer`s disease (AD) and control subject brains. Analyses of the pituitary gland have demonstrated that this organ retains relatively high concentrations of trace elements, including mercury, iron, and zinc. Our previous work has shown that the pituitary glands of AD and control subjects are typically higher in these trace elements than brain samples from the same subject. Instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) was used to compare the pituitary trace element levels of AD and control subjects. This study also describes the intrasubject relationships of brain trace element levels to those in the pituitary gland of AD and control subjects.

  9. Fish faddism causing low-level mercury poisoning in the Caribbean: two case reports

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Two otherwise healthy middle-aged males presented with persistent abdominal and lower- back pain, progressive weakness, paraesthesias, fatigue and weight loss over 8-12 months. Extensive work-up failed to localize organ pathology. Both men, strongly aware of the nutritional benefits of fish had a diet dedicated of canned and fresh fish. Raised blood mercury levels confirmed clinical suspicion and serial levels declined with symptom resolution after excluding dietary fish. To gain reported health benefits of fish as a healthy food modest consumption is encouraged. Efforts to monitor fish consumption and mercury residues in fish are recommended in Trinidad and Tobago. PMID:20126317

  10. Determining mercury levels in anchovy and in individuals with different fish consumption habits, together with their neurological effects.

    PubMed

    Çamur, Derya; Güler, Çağatay; Vaizoğlu, Songül Acar; Özdilek, Betül

    2016-07-01

    An increase in enviromental pollution may lead to mercury toxicity of fish origin due to the accumulative nature of methylmercury in fish. The main sources of human exposure to organic mercury compounds are contaminated fish and other seafoods. This descriptive study was planned to determine mercury levels in anchovy and in hair samples from individuals with different fish consumption habits, and to evaluate those individuals in terms of toxic effects. For that purpose, we analyzed 100 anchovies from the Black Sea and 100 anchovies from the Sea of Marmara, and assessed 25 wholesale workers in fish markets and 25 cleaning firm employees from both Ankara and Istanbul. Mercury levels in samples were measured using a cold vapor atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Participants were examined neurologically and mini mental state examination was applied to evaluate their cognitive functions. Mercury levels in fish were found to be below the national and international permitted levels. There was no statistically significant relation between mercury levels and the sea from which fish were caught. Hair mercury levels for all participants were within permitted ranges. However, hair mercury levels in both cities increased significantly with amount and frequency of fish consumption. A significant correlation was determined at correlation analysis between levels of fish consumption and hair mercury levels in the fishmongers and in the entire group (r = 0.32, p = 0.025; r = 0.23, p = 0.023, respectively). Neurological examination results were normal, except for a decrease in deep tendon reflexes in some participants in both cities. There was no correlation between Standardized Mini Mental State Examination results and hair mercury levels. We conclude that establishing a monitoring system for mercury levels in fish and humans will be useful in terms of evaluating potential neurotoxic effects. PMID:27353298

  11. Characterization of soils from an industrial complex contaminated with elemental mercury

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Carrie L. Watson, David B.; Lester, Brian P.; Lowe, Kenneth A.; Pierce, Eric M.; Liang, Liyuan

    2013-08-15

    Historical use of liquid elemental mercury (Hg(0){sub l}) at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, TN, USA, resulted in large deposits of Hg(0){sub l} in the soils. The fate and distribution of the spilled Hg(0) are not well characterized. In this study we evaluated analytical tools for characterizing the speciation of Hg in the contaminated soils and then used the analytical techniques to examine the speciation of Hg in two soil cores collected at the site. These include x-ray fluorescence (XRF), soil Hg(0) headspace analysis, and total Hg determination by acid digestion coupled with cold vapor atomic absorption (HgT). XRF was not found to be suitable for evaluating Hg concentrations in heterogeneous soils containing low concentration of Hg or Hg(0) because Hg concentrations determined using this method were lower than those determined by HgT analysis and the XRF detection limit is 20 mg/kg. Hg(0){sub g} headspace analysis coupled with HgT measurements yielded good results for examining the presence of Hg(0){sub l} in soils and the speciation of Hg. The two soil cores are highly heterogeneous in both the depth and extent of Hg contamination, with Hg concentrations ranging from 0.05 to 8400 mg/kg. In the first core, Hg(0){sub l} was distributed throughout the 3.2 m depth, whereas the second core, from a location 12 m away, contained Hg(0){sub l} in a 0.3 m zone only. Sequential extractions showed organically associated Hg dominant at depths with low Hg concentration. Soil from the zone of groundwater saturation showed reducing conditions and the Hg is likely present as Hg-sulfide species. At this depth, lateral Hg transport in the groundwater may be a source of Hg detected in the soil at the deeper soil depths. Overall, characterization of soils containing Hg(0){sub l} is difficult because of the heterogeneous distribution of Hg within the soils. This is exacerbated in industrial facilities where fill materials make up much of the soils and historical

  12. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart IIIii of... - Required Elements of Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans 5 Table 5 to Subpart IIIII of Part 63 Protection... Hazardous Air Pollutants: Mercury Emissions From Mercury Cell Chlor-Alkali Plants Pt. 63, Subpt. IIIII... and Cell Room Monitoring Plans Your Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement Plan required by §...

  13. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart IIIii of... - Required Elements of Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans 5 Table 5 to Subpart IIIII of Part 63 Protection... Hazardous Air Pollutants: Mercury Emissions From Mercury Cell Chlor-Alkali Plants Pt. 63, Subpt. IIIII... and Cell Room Monitoring Plans Your Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement Plan required by §...

  14. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart IIIii of... - Required Elements of Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans 5 Table 5 to Subpart IIIII of Part 63 Protection... Hazardous Air Pollutants: Mercury Emissions From Mercury Cell Chlor-Alkali Plants Pt. 63, Subpt. IIIII... and Cell Room Monitoring Plans Your Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement Plan required by §...

  15. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart IIIii of... - Required Elements of Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans 5 Table 5 to Subpart IIIII of Part 63 Protection... Hazardous Air Pollutants: Mercury Emissions From Mercury Cell Chlor-Alkali Plants Pt. 63, Subpt. IIIII... and Cell Room Monitoring Plans Your Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement Plan required by §...

  16. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart IIIii of... - Required Elements of Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Mercury Vapor Measurement and Cell Room Monitoring Plans 5 Table 5 to Subpart IIIII of Part 63 Protection... Hazardous Air Pollutants: Mercury Emissions From Mercury Cell Chlor-Alkali Plants Pt. 63, Subpt. IIIII... and Cell Room Monitoring Plans Your Floor-Level Mercury Vapor Measurement Plan required by §...

  17. [Spatial distribution and ecological significance of heavy metals in soils from Chatian mercury mining deposit, western Hunan province].

    PubMed

    Sun, Hong-Fei; Li, Yong-Hu; Ji, Yan-Fang; Yang, Lin-Sheng; Wang, Wu-Yi

    2009-04-15

    Ores, waste tailings and slag, together with three typical soil profiles (natural soil profiles far from mine entrance and near mine entrance, soil profile under slag) in Chatian mercury mining deposit (CMD), western Hunan province were sampled and their concentrations of mercury (Hg), arsenic (As), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), zinc (Zn) were determined by HG-ICP-AES and ICP-MS. Enrichment factor and correlation analysis were taken to investigate the origins, distribution and migration of Hg, as well as other heavy metals in the CMD. The results show that Hg is enriched in the bottom of the soil profile far from mine entrance but accumulated in the surface of soil profiles near mine entrance and under slag. The soil profiles near mine entrance and under slag are both contaminated by Hg, while the latter is contaminated more heavily. In the soil profile under slag, Hg concentration in the surface soil, Hg average concentration in the total profile, and the leaching depth of soil Hg are 640 microg x g(-1), (76.74 +/- 171.71) microg x g(-1), and more than 100 cm, respectively; while 6.5 microg x g(-1), (2.74 +/- 1.90) microg x g(-1), and 40 cm, respectively, are found in the soil profile near mine entrance. Soil in the mercury mine area is also polluted by Cd, As, Pb, Zn besides metallogenic element Hg, among which Cd pollution is relatively heavier than others. The mobility of the studied heavy metals in soil follows the order as Hg > Cd > As > Zn approximately equal to Pb. The leaching depth of the heavy metals is influenced by total concentration in the surface soil and soil physico-chemical parameters. The origins, distribution and migration of heavy metals in soil profile in the mining area are related to primary geological environment, and strongly influenced by human mining activities. PMID:19545023

  18. Effects of infiltration chemistry on the mobilization potential of mercury (Hg) in soils from the New Jersey Coastal Plain

    SciTech Connect

    MacLeod, C.; Taylor, E. . Dept. of Geological and Geophysical Sciences)

    1992-01-01

    Mercury concentrations in ground water exceeding the USEPA maximum contaminant level of 2 [mu]g/l have been found in wells 60 to 100 feet deep in the Kirkwood-Cohansey Aquifer System of the New Jersey Coastal Plain. The aquifer is a sand and gravel aquifer consisting primarily of quartz with minor amounts of biotite, plagioclase feldspars and ilmenite. This is the shallowest aquifer system in the NJ Coastal Plain and is unconfined over much of central and southern NJ. Soils on these aquifer sediments are quartz-rich with poorly developed A[sub 0] and B horizons. These are weakly-buffered acid soils with a pH ranging from 4.0 to 5.5, and little or no capacity for metal retention. Mercury contaminated soils from Gloucester County, NJ were used to determine the mobilization potential of Hg by run-off solutions containing 0.02M NaCl and 0.02M CaCl[sub 2] salt solutions that approximate diluted highway de-icing salts; and by a simulated acid rain solution of pH 4.0. These experimental data are in agreement with previous studies suggesting that chlorides from de-icing salts are capable of mobilizing Hg. However, the mobilization potential of Hg in coastal plain soils attributable to acid rain is much greater (approx. 1 to 2 orders of magnitude) than that estimated for de-icing salts. These data also indicate that in NJ Coastal Plain soils Hg mobilization may be controlled by colloidal movement during an infiltration event. Mobilization of Hg by the simulated acid rain solution was found to coincide with the resuspension of Fe and Al colloids, while no colloidal movement was found with either of the salt solutions. Thus Hg sorbed to Fe and Al colloids in NJ Coastal Plain soils is more likely to be mobilized by infiltration of acidic rain water or fluctuating acidic ground water than by highway de-icing salts.

  19. Children's exposure to mercury-contaminated soils: exposure assessment and risk characterization.

    PubMed

    Guney, Mert; Welfringer, Bruno; de Repentigny, Carl; Zagury, Gerald J

    2013-08-01

    Exposure to mercury (Hg)-contaminated soils may pose a health risk to children by way of oral, dermal, and inhalatory pathways. However, risk characterization studies, including contaminant bioaccessibility with child-specific exposure parameters and scenarios, are lacking. The objectives of this study were (1) to assess children's Hg exposure using characterization and oral bioaccessibility data from Hg-contaminated soils characterized in previous studies (n = 8); and (2) to characterize probabilistic risk in terms of hazard index (HI) considering ingestion, dermal, and inhalation pathways. Total Hg concentrations in soils ranged from 2.61 to 1.15 × 10(4) mg kg(-1). For moderately contaminated soils (S1-S5: Hg ≤ 12.15 mg kg(-1)), low oral bioaccessibility values (1.5-7.5 %) lead to HI < 1 in all scenarios. However, exposure to highly contaminated soils (S6-S8) may pose serious risks to children under normal exposure (HI 0.89-66.5) and soil-pica behaviour scenarios (HI up to 131). All three pathways significantly contributed to the risk. Using total Hg concentrations in calculations (assuming 100 % bioavailability) instead of considering Hg bioavailability leads to risk overestimation. Further research on oral, inhalatory, and dermal bioavailability of Hg, as well as child play behaviour, is recommended to obtain more accurate risk estimates. PMID:23546335

  20. Characterization of soils from an industrial complex contaminated with elemental mercury

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Carrie L; Watson, David B; Liang, Liyuan; Lester, Brian P; Lowe, Kenneth Alan; Pierce, Eric M

    2013-01-01

    Historic use of liquid elemental mercury (Hg(0)l) at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, TN, USA resulted in large deposits of Hg(0)l in the soils. An evaluation of analytical tools for characterizing the speciation of Hg in the soils at the Y-12 facility was conducted and these tequniques were used to examine the speciation of Hg in two soil cores collect at the site. These include X-ray fluorescence (XRF), soil Hg(0) headspace analysis, and total Hg determination by acid digestion coupled with cold vapor atomic absorption. Hg concentrations determined using XRF, a tool that has been suggestions for quick onsite characterization of soils, were lower than concentrations determined by HgT analysis and as a result this technique is not suitable for the evaluation of Hg concentrations in heterogeneous soils containing Hg(0)l. Hg(0)g headspace analysis can be used to examine the presence of Hg(0)l in soils and when coupled with HgT analysis an understanding of the speciation of Hg in soils can be obtained. Two soil cores collected within the Y-12 complex highlight the heterogeneity in the depth and extent of Hg contamination, with Hg concentrations ranging from 0.05 to 8400 mg/kg. At one location Hg(0)l was distributed throughout 3.2 meters of core whereas the core from a location only 12 meters away only contained Hg(0)l in 0.3 m zone of the core. Sequential extractions, used to examine the forms of Hg in the soils, indicated that at depths within the core that have low Hg concentrations organically associated Hg is dominant. Soil from the zone of groundwater inundation showed reduced characteristics and the Hg is likely present as Hg-sulfide species. At this location it appears that Hg transported within the groundwater is a source of Hg to the soil. Overall the characterization of Hg in soils containing Hg(0) l is difficult due to the heterogeneous distribution within the soils and this challenge is enhanced in industrial facilities in which fill

  1. Mercury in the Soil of Two Contrasting Watersheds in the Eastern United States

    PubMed Central

    Burns, Douglas A.; Woodruff, Laurel G.; Bradley, Paul M.; Cannon, William F.

    2014-01-01

    Soil represents the largest store of mercury (Hg) in terrestrial ecosystems, and further study of the factors associated with soil Hg storage is needed to address concerns about the magnitude and persistence of global environmental Hg bioaccumulation. To address this need, we compared total Hg and methyl Hg concentrations and stores in the soil of different landscapes in two watersheds in different geographic settings with similar and relatively high methyl Hg concentrations in surface waters and biota, Fishing Brook, Adirondack Mountains, New York, and McTier Creek, Coastal Plain, South Carolina. Median total Hg concentrations and stores in organic and mineral soil samples were three-fold greater at Fishing Brook than at McTier Creek. Similarly, median methyl Hg concentrations were about two-fold greater in Fishing Brook soil than in McTier Creek soil, but this difference was significant only for mineral soil samples, and methyl Hg stores were not significantly different among these watersheds. In contrast, the methyl Hg/total Hg ratio was significantly greater at McTier Creek suggesting greater climate-driven methylation efficiency in the Coastal Plain soil than that of the Adirondack Mountains. The Adirondack soil had eight-fold greater soil organic matter than that of the Coastal Plain, consistent with greater total Hg stores in the northern soil, but soil organic matter – total Hg relations differed among the sites. A strong linear relation was evident at McTier Creek (r2 = 0.68; p<0.001), but a linear relation at Fishing Brook was weak (r2 = 0.13; p<0.001) and highly variable across the soil organic matter content range, suggesting excess Hg binding capacity in the Adirondack soil. These results suggest greater total Hg turnover time in Adirondack soil than that of the Coastal Plain, and that future declines in stream water Hg concentrations driven by declines in atmospheric Hg deposition will be more gradual and prolonged in the Adirondacks. PMID

  2. Mercury in the soil of two contrasting watersheds in the eastern United States.

    PubMed

    Burns, Douglas A; Woodruff, Laurel G; Bradley, Paul M; Cannon, William F

    2014-01-01

    Soil represents the largest store of mercury (Hg) in terrestrial ecosystems, and further study of the factors associated with soil Hg storage is needed to address concerns about the magnitude and persistence of global environmental Hg bioaccumulation. To address this need, we compared total Hg and methyl Hg concentrations and stores in the soil of different landscapes in two watersheds in different geographic settings with similar and relatively high methyl Hg concentrations in surface waters and biota, Fishing Brook, Adirondack Mountains, New York, and McTier Creek, Coastal Plain, South Carolina. Median total Hg concentrations and stores in organic and mineral soil samples were three-fold greater at Fishing Brook than at McTier Creek. Similarly, median methyl Hg concentrations were about two-fold greater in Fishing Brook soil than in McTier Creek soil, but this difference was significant only for mineral soil samples, and methyl Hg stores were not significantly different among these watersheds. In contrast, the methyl Hg/total Hg ratio was significantly greater at McTier Creek suggesting greater climate-driven methylation efficiency in the Coastal Plain soil than that of the Adirondack Mountains. The Adirondack soil had eight-fold greater soil organic matter than that of the Coastal Plain, consistent with greater total Hg stores in the northern soil, but soil organic matter - total Hg relations differed among the sites. A strong linear relation was evident at McTier Creek (r(2) = 0.68; p<0.001), but a linear relation at Fishing Brook was weak (r(2) = 0.13; p<0.001) and highly variable across the soil organic matter content range, suggesting excess Hg binding capacity in the Adirondack soil. These results suggest greater total Hg turnover time in Adirondack soil than that of the Coastal Plain, and that future declines in stream water Hg concentrations driven by declines in atmospheric Hg deposition will be more gradual and prolonged in the Adirondacks. PMID

  3. Assessment of Mercury in Soils, Crops, Earthworms, and Water when Soil is Treated with Gypsum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Flue gas desulfurization (FGD) gypsum from fossil fuel combustion has many potential uses in agriculture, but there is concern about the potential environmental effects of its elevated mercury (Hg) concentration. The wet limestone scrubbing process that removes sulfur from flue gas (and produces gyp...

  4. Geochemical background of zinc, cadmium and mercury in anthropically influenced soils in a semi-arid zone (SE, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Lorenzo, M. L.; Pérez-Sirvent, C.; Martínez-Sánchez, M. J.; Molina, J.; Tudela, M. L.; Hernández-Córdoba, M.

    2009-04-01

    This work seeks to establish the geochemical background for three potentially toxic trace elements (Zn, Cd and Hg) in a pilot zone included in the DesertNet project in the province of Murcia. The studied area, known as Campo de Cartagena, Murcia (SE Spain) is an area of intensive agriculture and has been much affected over the years by anthropic activity. The zone can be considered an experimental pilot zone for establishing background levels in agricultural soils. Sixty four samples were collected and corresponded to areas subjected to high and similar agricultural activity or soils with natural vegetation, which correspond to abandoned agricultural areas. The Zn content was determined by flame atomic absorption spectrometry. The Cd content was determined by electrothermal atomization atomic absorption spectrometry and mercury content was determined by atomic fluorescence spectrometry. Geostatistical analysis consisting of kriging and mapping was performed using the geostatistical analyst extension of ArcGIS 8.3. Zinc values ranged from 10 mg kg-1 to 151 mg kg-1, with an average value of 45 mg kg-1. Cadmium values ranged between 0.1 mg kg-1 and 0.9mg kg-1, with a mean value of 0.3 mg kg-1 and mercury values ranged from 0.1 mg kg-1 to 2.3 mg kg-1, with a mean value of 0.5 mg kg-1. At a national level, the Spanish Royal Decree 9/2005 proposes toxicological and statistical approaches to establish background values. According to the statistical approach, background values consist of the median value for the selected element. The background values for Zn, Cd and Hg in the studied area were 40 mg kg-1 for Zn, 0.3 mg kg-1 for Cd and 0.4 mg kg-1 for Hg.

  5. Long-term gain changes in mercury-level tiltmeters of the Stacey type

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, J. S.; Jones, F. W.; Rouleau, P.

    1987-09-01

    A uniaxial mercury-level short baselength tilt transducer constructed at the University of Alberta is described. The design closely follows the differential capacitance tiltmeter of Stacey et al. (1969), but differs in that aluminum is used for the beam, and how the mercury cups are supported beneath the beam. It also allows gain verification by comparison of the direct capacitances with a known capacitance. It has been found that the gain factor for the instrument changes with time, because of the relaxation of the mercury surfaces. This has been monitored for several years for four instruments at two sites. The gains change rapidly for several months after installation, but more slowly as time progresses. The magnitudes of such changes in instruments of this type may be as large as 3 percent.

  6. Mercury in mushrooms and soil from the Wieluńska Upland in south-central Poland.

    PubMed

    Falandysz, Jerzy; Bielawski, Leszek; Kawano, Masabide; Brzostowski, Andrzej; Chudzyński, Krzysztof

    2002-09-01

    Concentrations of mercury were determined in the fruiting bodies of 15 species of higher mushrooms and underlying soil substrate collected from Wieluńska Upland in northern part of Sandomierska Valley in south-central Poland in 1995. A total of 197 samples of caps, 197 stalks, 30 whole fruiting bodies and 227 soil (0-10 cm layer) were analyzed. Mean mercury concentrations in soil substrate corresponding to 15 mushroom species were between 28 +/- 17 and 85 +/- 62 ng/g dry matter (total range between 3.0-190 ng/g). The average cap to stalk concentration quotients of Hg were around 2 (range between 1.1 +/- 1.1 and 2.8 +/- 1.4). However, this quotient in Larch bolete (Suillus grevillei) was 4.4 +/- 6.3. Concentrations of Hg varied depending on the mushroom species. Parasol Mushroom (Macrolepiota procera) and Horse mushroom (Agaricus arvensis) contained the greatest mean mercury concentrations both in caps (between 4500 +/- 1700 and 4400 +/- 2400 ng/g dry matter) and stalks (between 2800 +/- 1300 and 3000 +/- 2000 ng/g dry matter). Both the Parasol Mushroom and Horse mushroom were characterised also by a greater potential to bioconcentrate mercury from soils as evidenced by great bioconcentration factors (BCFs), which were between 170 +/- 160 and 130 +/- 120 for caps, and 110 +/- 97 and 89 +/- 92 for stalks. Mercury concentrations in caps and stalks of False death cap (Amanita citrina) increased (p < 0.05) with increasing soil mercury contents. An opposite trend was observed for Quéleta brittle gills (Russula queleti), Grat knight-cap (Tricholoma terreum), Fly agaric (Amanita muscaria), Common scaber stalk (Leccinum scabrum) and Slippery jack (Suillus luteus). PMID:12369635

  7. Barium Levels in Soils and Centella asiatica

    PubMed Central

    Ong, Ghim Hock; Yap, Chee Kong; Mahmood, Maziah; Tan, Soon Guan; Hamzah, Suhaimi

    2013-01-01

    In this study, Centella asiatica and surface soils were collected from 12 sampling sites in Peninsular Malaysia, and the barium (Ba) concentrations were determined. The Ba concentration [μg/g dry weight (dw)] was 63.72 to 382.01 μg/g in soils while in C. asiatica, Ba concentrations ranged from 5.05 to 21.88 μg/g for roots, 3.31 to 11.22 μg/g for leaves and 2.37 to 6.14 μg/g for stems. In C. asiatica, Ba accumulation was found to be the highest in roots followed by leaves and stems. The correlation coefficients (r) of Ba between plants and soils were found to be significantly positively correlated, with the highest correlation being between roots-soils (r=0.922, p<005), followed by leaves-soils (r=0.890, p<005) and stems-soils (r=0.848, p<005). This indicates that these three parts of C. asiatica are good biomonitors of Ba pollution. For the transplantation study, four sites were selected as unpolluted [(Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM)], semi-polluted (Seri Kembangan and Balakong) and polluted sites (Juru). Based on the transplantation study under experimental field and laboratory conditions, Ba concentrations in C. asiatica were significantly (p<0.05) higher after three weeks of exposure at Seri Kembangan, Balakong and Juru. Thus, these experimental findings confirm that the leaves, stems and roots of C. asiatica can reflect the Ba levels in the soils where this plant is found. Three weeks after back transplantation to clean soils, the Ba levels in C. asiatica were still higher than the initial Ba level even though Ba elimination occurred. In conclusion, the leaves, stems and roots of C. asiatica are good biomonitors of Ba pollution. PMID:24575242

  8. Bioaccumulation of trace mercury in trophic levels of benthic, benthopelagic, pelagic fish species, and sea birds from Arvand River, Iran.

    PubMed

    Hosseini, Mehdi; Nabavi, Seyed Mohammad Bagher; Parsa, Yaghob

    2013-12-01

    In this study, concentration of mercury was determined in the trophic levels of benthic, benthopelagic, pelagic fish species, and river birds from Arvand River, located in the Khuzestan province in the lowlands of southwestern Iran at the head of the Persian Gulf. The order of mercury concentrations in tissues of the fish species was as follows: liver>gill>muscle and in tissues of the kingfisher species was as follows: feather>liver>kidney>muscle. Therefore, liver in fish and feather in kingfisher exhibited higher mercury concentration than the other tissues. There was a positive correlation between mercury concentrations in fish and kingfisher species with size of its food items. We expected to see higher mercury levels in tissues of female species because they are larger and can eat larger food items. The results of this study show that the highest mean mercury level were found in the kingfisher (Anas crecca), followed by benthic (Epinephelus diacanthus), benthopelagic (Chanos chanos), and pelagic fish (Strongylura strongylura). Mean value of mercury in fish species, S. strongylura were (0.61 μg g(-1) dry weight), C. chanos (0.45 μg g(-1) dry weight), E. diacanthus (0.87 μg g(-1) dry weight), and in kingfisher species A. crecca was (2.64 μg g(-1) dry weight). Significant correlation between mercury concentration in fish and kingfisher may be related to high variability of mercury in the fish. PMID:24174062

  9. Geochemistry and environmental threats of soils surrounding an abandoned mercury mine.

    PubMed

    Bori, Jaume; Vallès, Bettina; Navarro, Andrés; Riva, Maria Carme

    2016-07-01

    The closure of mercury mining areas is generally associated with a release of Hg and other metals into the environment due to the abandonment of mining wastes. Because of their potential toxic properties, the mobilization of particulate and soluble metal species is of major concern. In the present study, the environmental risks posed by soils surrounding an abandoned mercury mining area in Valle del Azogue (Almeria, Spain) are assessed through the determination of physical-chemical parameters, the quantification of metal concentrations, and the application of aquatic and terrestrial ecotoxicity bioassays. Chemical analysis of soil samples revealed concentrations of Hg, As, Ba, Pb, Sb, and Zn above international intervention values. Results from terrestrial tests showed detrimental effects in all studied organisms (Eisenia foetida, Folsomia candida, and different plant species) and revealed the avoidance response of earthworms as the most sensitive endpoint. Surprisingly, the most toxic samples were not the ones with higher metal contents but the ones presenting higher electrical conductivity. Aquatic ecotoxicity tests with Vibrio fischeri, Raphidocelis subcapitata, Daphnia magna, and Danio rerio were in accordance with terrestrial tests, confirming the need to couple environmental chemistry with ecotoxicological tools for the proper assessment of metal-contaminated sites. In view of the results, a remediative intervention of the studied area is recommended. PMID:26996905

  10. A gravimetric approach to providing SI traceability for concentration measurement results of mercury vapor at ambient air levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ent, Hugo; van Andel, Inge; Heemskerk, Maurice; van Otterloo, Peter; Bavius, Wijnand; Baldan, Annarita; Horvat, Milena; Brown, Richard J. C.; Quétel, Christophe R.

    2014-11-01

    Current measurement and calibration capabilities for mercury vapor in air are maintained at levels of 0.2-40 μg Hg m-3. In this work, a mercury vapor generator has been developed to establish metrological traceability to the international system of units (SI) for mercury vapor measurement results ≤15 ng Hg m-3, i.e. closer to realistic ambient air concentrations (1-2 ng Hg m-3) [1]. Innovations developed included a modified type of diffusion cell, a new measurement method to weigh the loss in (mercury) mass of these diffusion cells during use (ca. 6-8 μg mass difference between successive weighings), and a new housing for the diffusion cells to maximize flow characteristics and to minimize temperature variations and adsorption effects. The newly developed mercury vapor generator system was tested by using diffusion cells generating 0.8 and 16 ng Hg min-1. The results also show that the filter system, to produce mercury free air, is working properly. Furthermore, and most importantly, the system is producing a flow with a stable mercury vapor content. Some additional improvements are still required to allow the developed mercury vapor generator to produce SI traceable mercury vapor concentrations, based upon gravimetry, at much lower concentration levels and reduced measurement uncertainties than have been achieved previously. The challenges to be met are especially related to developing more robust diffusion cells and better mass measurement conditions. The developed mercury vapor generator will contribute to more reliable measurement results of mercury vapor at ambient and background air levels, and also to better safety standards and cost reductions in industrial processes, such as the liquefied natural gas field, where aluminum main cryogenic heat exchangers are used which are particularly prone to corrosion caused by mercury.