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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.

    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

  18. 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.

  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. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  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. 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

  4. 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

  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

    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 ...

  9. 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

  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. 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

  18. 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.

  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. 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

  12. [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

  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. 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.

  15. 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

  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. 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.

  17. 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.

  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. 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

  5. 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

  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. 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

  3. 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.

  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. 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

  8. 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

  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. 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

  6. 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

  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

    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

  2. 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

  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. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Population correlates of circulating mercury levels in Korean adults: the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey IV

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Prior studies focused on bioaccumulation of mercury (Hg) and on large, long-lived fish species as the major environmental source of Hg, but little is known about consumption of small-sized fish or about non-dietary determinants of circulating Hg levels. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whole blood mercury concentration (WBHg) and its major dietary and non-dietary correlates in Korean adults. Methods We analyzed cross-sectional data from 3,972 (male = 1,994; female = 1,978) participants who completed the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey IV, 2008 to 2009. Relevant factors included diet, geographic location of residence, demographics, and lifestyle. WBHg concentration was measured using cold-vapor atomic absorption spectrometry. Multivariable linear models assessed independent correlates of dietary and non-dietary factors for WBHg levels. Results Median levels of WBHg were 5.1 μg/L in men and 3.7 μg/L in women. Higher levels of fish/shellfish intake were associated with higher levels of WBHg. Higher consumption of small-sized fish was linked to higher levels of WBHg. Non-dietary predictors of higher WBHg were being male, greater alcohol consumption, higher income and education, overweight/obesity, increasing age, and living in the southeast region. Conclusions Both dietary and non-dietary factors were associated with WBHg levels in the Korean population. There is significant geographic variation in WBHg levels; residents living in the mid-south have higher WBHg levels. We speculate that uncontrolled geographic characteristics, such as local soil/water content and specific dietary habits are involved. PMID:24884916

  12. Invasive and exotic earthworms: an unaccounted change to mercury cycling in northeastern US forest soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richardson, J. B.; Friedland, A. J.; Görres, J. H.; Renock, D. J.; Jackson, B. P.

    2014-12-01

    Invasive and exotic earthworms are now present in many forested areas of the northeastern US with currently unquantified consequences to abiotic and biotic Hg cycling. To quantify these effects, we measured Hg concentrations (mg kg-1) and amounts (μg m-2) in earthworms and soil horizons at 45 soil pits from 9 sites in northern New England. Seven earthworm species were observed in varying assemblages. Most earthworm species attained concentrations of Hg potentially hazardous to wildlife that may ingest them, with highest concentrations found in shallow-burrowing, litter-feeders. Specifically, Aporrectodea rosea and Amynthas agrestis had the greatest Hg concentrations (0.9 ± 0.1) and Hg amounts (8 ± 2) μg m-2. Aporrectodea rosea and Amynthas agrestis were found to inhabit the forest floor and the top 5 cm of the mineral horizons in high abundance, potentially making it a readily accessible prey species. Bioaccumulation of Hg by invasive and exotic earthworms may be an important mechanism that transfers Hg to ground foraging predators, such as thrushes, red-backed salamanders and foxes, which is generally unaccounted for in terrestrial food chains. Earthworm Hg concentrations were poorly correlated with their respective soil Hg concentrations, suggesting a species dependence for Hg bioaccumulation rather than site effects. We observed that forest floor Hg concentrations and amounts were 23% and 57% lower, respectively, at soil pits with earthworms compared to those without. Moreover, Hg amounts in forest floor-feeding earthworms exceeded the remaining forest floor Hg pools. Mercury concentrations and pools in the mineral soil were 21% and 33% lower, respectively, for soil pits with earthworms compared to those without. We hypothesize that enhanced decomposition, horizon disturbance and bioaccumulation by earthworms has decreased Hg amounts in the forest floor and mineral soil. Our results suggest that earthworms are decreasing Hg storage in forest soils with

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-08-01

    Historical 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. 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)g headspace analysis coupled with HgT measurements yielded good results for examining the presence of Hg(0)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 8400mg/kg. In the first core, Hg(0)l was distributed throughout the 3.2m depth, whereas the second core, from a location 12m away, contained Hg(0)l in a 0.3m 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)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 and continued reworking of the subsurface has

  14. Ecotoxicity of mercury to Folsomia candida and Proisotoma minuta (Collembola: Isotomidae) in tropical soils: Baseline for ecological risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Buch, Andressa Cristhy; Niemeyer, Júlia Carina; Fernandes Correia, Maria Elizabeth; Silva-Filho, Emmanoel Vieira

    2016-05-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a highly toxic nonessential trace metal. Despite its natural occurrence in the Earth's Crust, its concentrations have been steadily increasing in the environment due to anthropogenic sources. Recent studies have showed great concern about soil fauna, once the potential adverse effects of mercury concentrations in the environment of these invertebrates are still poorly understood, especially when linked to forest soils and tropical biota. Different collembolan species can show distinct toxicity effects to the contaminants, impairing its developing lifelong and affecting its diversity and abundance in the environment. Laboratory studies were performed to evaluate the ecotoxicity of Hg(II) to collembolan species collected in Brazil, Proisotoma minuta (autochthonous) and Folsomia candida (allochthonous), as a tool to predict effects in ecological risk assessment of tropical regions. Behavioral, acute and chronic tests were carried under temperatures of 20°C and 24°C using two test soils, natural and artificial, spiked with increasing mercury concentrations. F. candida was more sensitive to mercury contamination than P. minuta, presenting the most restrictive values of EC50 and LC50. Reproduction was a considerably more sensitive endpoint than avoidance and mortality. The 28-day lower EC50 values were found in chronic tests for F. candida in natural soil to 24°C (3.32mgHgkg(-1)), while for P. minuta was in tropical artificial soil to 20°C (4.43mgHgkg(-1)). There were similarity for each collembolan species to respond at the Hg(II) effects when exposed at 20°C and 24°C. F. candida can be suitable as a bioindicator species to mercury ecotoxicity tests in tropical forest soils. PMID:26796529

  15. Biogeochemical factors affecting mercury methylation rate in two contaminated floodplain soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frohne, T.; Rinklebe, J.; Langer, U.; Du Laing, G.; Mothes, S.; Wennrich, R.

    2012-01-01

    An automated biogeochemical microcosm system allowing controlled variation of redox potential (EH) in soil suspensions was used to assess the effect of various factors on the mobility of mercury (Hg) as well as on the methylation of Hg in two contaminated floodplain soils with different Hg concentrations (approximately 5 mg Hg kg-1 and >30 mg Hg kg-1). The experiment was conducted under stepwise variation from reducing (approximately -350 mV at pH 5) to oxidizing conditions (approximately 600 mV at pH 5). Results of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) analysis indicate the occurrence of sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) such as Desulfobacter species (10Me16:0, cy17:0, 10Me18:0, cy19:0) or Desulfovibrio species (18:2ω6,9), which are considered to promote Hg methylation. The products of the methylation process are lipophilic, highly toxic methyl mercury species such as the monomethyl mercury ion [MeHg+], which is named as MeHg here. The ln(MeHg/Hgt) ratio is assumed to reflect the net production of monomethyl mercury normalized to total dissolved Hg (Hgt) concentration. This ratio increases with rising dissolved organic carbon (DOC) to Hgt ratio (ln(DOC/Hgt) ratio) (R2 = 0.39, p<0.0001, n= 63) whereas the relation between ln(MeHg/Hgt ratio and lnDOC is weaker (R2 = 0.09; p<0.05; n = 63). In conclusion, the DOC/Hgt ratio might be a more important factor for the Hg net methylation than DOC alone in the current study. Redox variations seem to affect the biogeochemical behavior of dissolved inorganic Hg species and MeHg indirectly through related changes in DOC, sulfur cycle, and microbial community structure whereas EH and pH values, as well as concentration of dissolved Fe3+/Fe2+ and Cl- seem to play subordinate roles in Hg mobilization and methylation under our experimental conditions.

  16. Biogeochemical factors affecting mercury methylation rate in two contaminated floodplain soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frohne, T.; Rinklebe, J.; Langer, U.; Du Laing, G.; Mothes, S.; Wennrich, R.

    2011-09-01

    An automated biogeochemical microcosm system allowing controlled variation of redox potential (EH) in soil suspensions was used to assess the effect of various factors on the mobility of mercury (Hg) as well as on the methylation of Hg in two contaminated floodplain soils with different Hg concentrations (approximately 5 mg kg-1 Hg and >30 mg kg-1 Hg). The experiment was conducted under stepwise variation from reducing (approximately -350 mV at pH 5) to oxidizing conditions (approximately 600 mV at pH 5). Results of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) analysis indicate the occurrence of sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) such as Desulfobacter species (10me16:0, cy17:0, 10me18:0, cy19:0) or Desulfovibrio species (18:2ω6,9), which are considered to promote Hg methylation. The products of the methylation process are lipophilic, highly toxic methyl mercury species such as the monomethyl mercury ion [MeHg+], which is named as MeHg here. The ln(MeHg/Hgt) ratio is assumed to reflect the net production of monomethyl mercury normalized to total dissolved Hg (Hgt) concentration. This ratio increases with rising dissolved organic carbon (DOC) to Hgt ratio (lnDOC/lnHgt ratio) (R2 = 0.39, p < 0.0001, n = 63) whereas the relation between ln(MeHg/Hgt) ratio and lnDOC is weaker (R2 = 0.09; p < 0.05; n = 63). In conclusion, the DOC/Hgt ratio might be a more important factor for the Hg net methylation than DOC alone in the current study. Redox variations seem to affect the biogeochemical behavior of dissolved inorganic Hg species and MeHg indirectly through related changes in DOC, sulfur cycle, and microbial community structure whereas E,H and pH values, as well as concentration of dissolved Fe,3+/Fe2+ and Cl- seem to play subordinate roles in Hg mobilization and methylation under our experimental conditions.

  17. Molecular field analysis of trophic relationships in soil-dwelling invertebrates to identify mercury, lead and cadmium transmission through forest ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Šerić Jelaska, Lucija; Jurasović, Jasna; Brown, David S; Vaughan, Ian P; Symondson, William O C

    2014-08-01

    Contamination pathways in complex food chains in soil ecosystems can be difficult to elucidate. Molecular analysis of predator gut content can, however, rapidly reveal previously unidentified trophic interactions between invertebrates and thereby uncover pathways of pollutant spread. Here, we measured concentrations of the toxic metals lead, cadmium and mercury in carabid beetle predators and their prey. Invertebrates were sampled at one control and four heavy metal-polluted sites to reveal the impact of diet composition and seasonal variation in prey availability on metal burden in carabids and metal transfer pathways through forest ecosystems. This is the first report, to our knowledge, of carabid diet composition based on PCR analysis of gut contents at the forest community level, rather than in cultivated fields. Extensive screening using group- and species-specific primers revealed that carabids ate primarily earthworms and slugs, as well as smaller numbers of woodlice and springtails. Metal concentrations in carabids correlated with seasonal changes in diet. Mercury accumulated in beetle predators more than in their slug prey. As earthworms, slugs and carabid beetles are the major prey of many birds and mammals, prey-predator transfer and associated toxicity are major risks at mercury-contaminated sites. Carabids may be useful bioindicators for assessing the impact of pollutants on soil ecosystems, as long as species and seasonal factors are taken into account. PMID:24138157

  18. Impact of forested fallows on fertility and mercury content in soils of the Tapajós River region, Brazilian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Patry, Cynthia; Davidson, Robert; Lucotte, Marc; Béliveau, Annie

    2013-08-01

    Recent research on slash-and-burn agriculture conducted in the Amazonian basin has suggested that soils must be left under forested fallows for at least 10 to 15 years to regain fertility levels comparable to non-disturbed forests in order to allow for short cycle crop cultivation. However, small scale farmers tend nowadays to re-burn secondary forests as soon as after 3 to 5 years, thus could contribute to further reduce soil fertility and could enhance the transfer of mercury (Hg) naturally present in soils of the region towards water courses. The present research project sets out to characterize the impact of forested fallows of differing age and land-use history on soils properties (fertility and Hg contents) in the region of the Tapajós River, an active pioneer front of the Brazilian Amazon. To do this, soil samples in forested fallows of variable age and in control primary forests were retrieved. In general, soil fertility of grouped forested fallows of different ages was similar to that of the primary forests. But when discriminating soils according to their texture, forested fallows on coarse grained soils still had much higher NH4/NO3 ratios, NH4 and Ca contents than primary forests, this even 15 years after burning. The impact of repeated burnings was also assessed. Fallows on coarse grained soils showed an impoverishment for all variables related to fertility when the number of burnings was 5 or more. For fallows on fine grained soils that underwent 5 or more burnings, NO3 contents were low although a cation enrichment was observed. Total soil Hg content was also sensitive to repeated burnings, showing similar losses for forested fallows established on both types of soil. However, Hg linked to coarse particles appeared to migrate back towards fine particles at the surface of coarse grained soils in fallows older than 7 years. PMID:23651778

  19. A reactive transport model for mercury fate in contaminated soil--sensitivity analysis.

    PubMed

    Leterme, Bertrand; Jacques, Diederik

    2015-11-01

    We present a sensitivity analysis of a reactive transport model of mercury (Hg) fate in contaminated soil systems. The one-dimensional model, presented in Leterme et al. (2014), couples water flow in variably saturated conditions with Hg physico-chemical reactions. The sensitivity of Hg leaching and volatilisation to parameter uncertainty is examined using the elementary effect method. A test case is built using a hypothetical 1-m depth sandy soil and a 50-year time series of daily precipitation and evapotranspiration. Hg anthropogenic contamination is simulated in the topsoil by separately considering three different sources: cinnabar, non-aqueous phase liquid and aqueous mercuric chloride. The model sensitivity to a set of 13 input parameters is assessed, using three different model outputs (volatilized Hg, leached Hg, Hg still present in the contaminated soil horizon). Results show that dissolved organic matter (DOM) concentration in soil solution and the binding constant to DOM thiol groups are critical parameters, as well as parameters related to Hg sorption to humic and fulvic acids in solid organic matter. Initial Hg concentration is also identified as a sensitive parameter. The sensitivity analysis also brings out non-monotonic model behaviour for certain parameters. PMID:26099598

  20. Immobilization of mercury in field soil and sediment using carboxymethyl cellulose stabilized iron sulfide nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Yanyan; Liu, Yuanyuan; Xiong, Zhong; Kaback, Dawn; Zhao, Dongye

    2012-07-01

    Mercury (Hg) is one of the most pervasive and bio-accumulative metals in the environment. Yet, effective in situ remediation technologies have been lacking. This study investigated the effectiveness of a class of soil-deliverable FeS nanoparticles for in situ immobilization of Hg in two field-contaminated soils from a New Jersey site and one sediment from an Alabama site. The nanoparticles were prepared using sodium carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) as a stabilizer. Transmission electron microscopy measurements revealed a particle size of 34.3 ± 8.3 nm (standard deviation), whereas dynamic light scattering gave a hydrodynamic diameter of 222.5 ± 3.2 nm. Batch tests showed that at an FeS-to-Hg molar ratio of 28:1-118:1, the nanoparticles reduced water-leachable Hg by 79%-96% and the TCLP (toxicity characteristic leaching procedure) based leachability by 26%-96%. Column breakthrough tests indicated that the nanoparticles were deliverable in the sediment/soil columns under moderate injection pressure. However, once the external pressure was removed, the delivered nanoparticles remained virtually mobile under typical groundwater flow conditions. When the Hg-contaminated soil and sediment were treated with 52-95 pore volumes of a 500 mg l-1 FeS nanoparticle suspension, water-leachable Hg was reduced by 90%-93% and TCLP-leachable Hg was reduced by 65%-91%. The results warrant further field demonstration of this promising in situ remediation technology.

  1. Solving mercury (Hg) speciation in soil samples by synchrotron X-ray microspectroscopic techniques.

    PubMed

    Terzano, Roberto; Santoro, Anna; Spagnuolo, Matteo; Vekemans, Bart; Medici, Luca; Janssens, Koen; Göttlicher, Jörg; Denecke, Melissa A; Mangold, Stefan; Ruggiero, Pacifico

    2010-08-01

    Direct mercury (Hg) speciation was assessed for soil samples with a Hg concentration ranging from 7 up to 240 mg kg(-1). Hg chemical forms were identified and quantified by sequential extractions and bulk- and micro-analytical techniques exploiting synchrotron generated X-rays. In particular, microspectroscopic techniques such as mu-XRF, mu-XRD and mu-XANES were necessary to solve bulk Hg speciation, in both soil fractions <2 mm and <2 microm. The main Hg-species found in the soil samples were metacinnabar (beta-HgS), cinnabar (alpha-HgS), corderoite (Hg(3)S(2)Cl(2)), and an amorphous phase containing Hg bound to chlorine and sulfur. The amount of metacinnabar and amorphous phases increased in the fraction <2 microm. No interaction among Hg-species and soil components was observed. All the observed Hg-species originated from the slow weathering of an inert Hg-containing waste material (K106, U.S. EPA) dumped in the area several years ago, which is changing into a relatively more dangerous source of pollution. PMID:20605298

  2. Air-surface exchange of mercury with soils amended with ash materials.

    PubMed

    Ericksen, Jody; Gustin, Mae Sexauer

    2006-07-01

    Air-surface exchange of mercury (Hg) was measured from soil low in Hg (0.013 mg/kg) amended with four different ash materials: a wood ash containing -10% coal ash (0.070 mg/kg Hg), a mixture of two subbituminous coal fly ashes (0.075 mg/kg Hg), a subbituminous coal ash containing -10% petroleum coke ash (1.2 mg/kg Hg), and an ash from incinerated municipal sewage sludge (4.3 mg/kg Hg) using a dynamic flux chamber. Ash was added to soil to simulate agricultural supplements, soil stabilization, and pad layers used in livestock areas. For the agricultural amendment, -0.4% ash was well mixed into the soil. To make the stabilized soil that could be used for construction purposes, -20% ash was mixed into soil with water. The pad layer consisted of a wetted 1-cm layer of ash material on the soil surface. Diel trends of Hg flux were observed for all of the substrates with significantly higher Hg emissions during the day and negligible flux or deposition of Hg during the night. Hg fluxes, which were measured in the summer months, were best correlated with solar radiation, temperature, and air O3 concentrations. Mean Hg fluxes measured outdoors for unamended soils ranged from 19 to 140 ng/m2 day, whereas those for soil amended with ash to simulate an agricultural application ranged from 7.2 to 230 ng/m2 day. Fluxes for soil stabilized with ash ranged from 77 to 530 ng/m2 day and for soil with pads constructed of ash ranged from -50 to 90 ng/m2 day. Simple analytical tests (i.e., total Hg content, synthetic precipitation leaching procedure, heating, and indoor gas-exchange experiments) were performed to assess whether algorithms based on these tests could be used to predict Hg fluxes observed outdoors using the flux chamber. Based on this study, no consistent relationships could be developed. More work is needed to assess long-term and seasonal variations in Hg flux from (intact and disturbed) substrates before annual estimates of emissions can be developed. PMID:16878589

  3. Air-surface exchange of mercury with soils amended with ash materials

    SciTech Connect

    Jody Ericksen; Mae Sexauer Gustin

    2006-07-15

    Air-surface exchange of mercury (Hg) was measured from soil low in Hg amended with four different ash materials: a wood ash containing {approximately} 10% coal ash, amixture of two subbituminous coal fly ashes, a subbituminous coal ash containing {approximately} 10% petroleum coke ash and an ash from incinerated municipal sewage sludge (4.3 mg/kg Hg) using a dynamic flux chamber. Ash was added to soil to simulate agricultural supplements, soil stabilization, and pad layers used in livestock areas. For the agricultural amendment, {approximately} 0.4% ash was well mixed into the soil. To make the stabilized soil that could be used for construction purposes, {approximately} 20% ash was mixed into soil with water. The pad layer consisted of a wetted 1-cm layer of ash material on the soil surface. Diel trends of Hg flux were observed for all of the substrates with significantly higher Hg emissions during the day and negligible flux or deposition of Hg during the night. Hg fluxes, which were measured in the summer months, were best correlated with solar radiation, temperature, and air O{sub 3} concentrations. Mean Hg fluxes measured outdoors for unamended soils ranged from 19 to 140 ng/m{sup 2} day, whereas those for soil amended with ash to simulate an agricultural application ranged from 7.2 to 230 ng/m{sup 2} day. Fluxes for soil stabilized with ash ranged from 77 to 530 ng/m{sup 2} day and for soil with pads constructed of ash ranged from -50 to 90 ng/m{sup 2} day. Simple analytical tests were performed to assess whether algorithms based on these tests could be used to predict Hg fluxes observed outdoors using the flux chamber. Based on this study, no consistent relationships could be developed. More work is needed to assess long-term and seasonal variations in Hg flux from substrates before annual estimates of emissions can be developed. 45 refs., 8 figs., 3 tabs.

  4. Hair mercury levels in pregnant women in Mahshahr, Iran: fish consumption as a determinant of exposure.

    PubMed

    Salehi, Zohreh; Esmaili-Sari, Abbas

    2010-09-15

    MeHg is a well-documented neurotoxicant even at low levels of exposure. Developing brain, in particular, is vulnerable to that. Through bioaccumulating to differing degrees in various fish species, it can have serious adverse effects on the development and functioning of the human central nervous system, especially during prenatal exposure. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate mercury concentration in hair samples of pregnant women living in Mahshahr located in Khuzestan province, Iran. It assessed the association between fish consumption and specific characteristics that can influence exposure. From April to June 2008, 149 pregnant women were invited to participate in this study. An interview administered questionnaire was used to collect information about age, body weight, height, fish (fresh, canned and shrimp) consumption, pregnancy stage, residence duration, education level, family income and number of dental amalgam fillings. The obtained results showed that the geometric mean and range for hair total Hg concentration was 3.52 microg/g (0.44-53.56 microg/g). About 5.4% of mothers had hair total Hg levels in excess of 10 microg/g. Maternal hair mercury level was less than threshold level of WHO (5 microg/g). As expected, there was a clear increase in hair Hg with reported fresh marine fish consumption (p=0.04). The highest mean for hair mercury level in a group who consumed fish several times per week, was 4.93 microg/g. Moreover, a significant effect of age and residential time on Hg concentration in the hair of the women was found. Pregnant women in Mahshahr consumed large amounts of fish; consequently, most of their offspring were prenatally exposed to moderately high levels of mercury. The results found suggest that pregnant women should decrease their fish consumption. PMID:20655095

  5. Simple and accessible analytical methods for the determination of mercury in soil and coal samples.

    PubMed

    Park, Chul Hee; Eom, Yujin; Lee, Lauren Jong-Eun; Lee, Tai Gyu

    2013-09-01

    Simple and accessible analytical methods compared to conventional methods such as US EPA Method 7471B and ASTM-D6414 for the determination of mercury (Hg) in soil and coal samples are proposed. The new methods are consisted of fewer steps without the Hg oxidizing step consequently eliminating a step necessary to reduce excess oxidant. In the proposed methods, a Hg extraction is an inexpensive and accessible step utilizing a disposable test tube and a heating block instead of an expensive autoclave vessel and a specially-designed microwave. Also, a common laboratory vacuum filtration was used for the extracts instead of centrifugation. As for the optimal conditions, first, best acids for extracting Hg from soil and coal samples was investigated using certified reference materials (CRMs). Among common laboratory acids (HCl, HNO3, H2SO4, and aqua regia), aqua regia was most effective for the soil CRM whereas HNO3 was for the coal CRM. Next, the optimal heating temperature and time for Hg extraction were evaluated. The most effective Hg extraction was obtained at 120°C for 30min for soil CRM and at 70°C for 90min for coal CRM. Further tests using selected CRMs showed that all the measured values were within the allowable certification range. Finally, actual soil and coal samples were analyzed using the new methods and the US EPA Method 7473. The relative standard deviation values of 1.71-6.55% for soil and 0.97-12.11% for coal samples were obtained proving that the proposed methods were not only simple and accessible but also accurate. PMID:23683353

  6. Mercury in soils, lakes, and fish in Voyageurs National Park (Minnesota): Importance of atmospheric deposition and ecosystem factors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiener, J.G.; Knights, B.C.; Sandheinrich, M.B.; Jeremiason, J.D.; Brigham, M.E.; Engstrom, D.R.; Woodruff, L.G.; Cannon, W.F.; Balogh, S.J.

    2006-01-01

    Concentrations of methylmercury in game fish from many interior lakes in Voyageurs National Park (MN, U.S.A.) substantially exceed criteria for the protection of human health. We assessed the importance of atmospheric and geologic sources of mercury to interior lakes and watersheds within the Park and identified ecosystem factors associated with variation in methylmercury contamination of lacustrine food webs. Geologic sources of mercury were small, based on analyses of underlying bedrock and C-horizon soils, and nearly all mercury in the O- and A-horizon soils was derived from atmospheric deposition. Analyses of dated sediment cores from five lakes showed that most (63% ?? 13%) of the mercury accumulated in lake sediments during the 1900s was from anthropogenic sources. Contamination of food webs was assessed by analysis of whole, 1-year-old yellow perch (Perca flavescens), a regionally important prey fish. The concentrations of total mercury in yellow perch and of methylmercury in lake water varied substantially among lakes, reflecting the influence of ecosystem processes and variables that affect the microbial production and abundance of methylmercury. Models developed with the information-theoretic approach (Akaike Information Criteria) identified lake water pH, dissolved sulfate, and total organic carbon (an indicator of wetland influence) as factors influencing methylmercury concentrations in lake water and fish. We conclude that nearly all of the mercury in fish in this seemingly pristine landscape was derived from atmospheric deposition, that most of this bioaccumulated mercury was from anthropogenic sources, and that both watershed and lacustrine factors exert important controls on the bioaccumulation of methylmercury. ?? 2006 American Chemical Society.

  7. A comprehensive assessment of mercury exposure in penguin populations throughout the Southern Hemisphere: Using trophic calculations to identify sources of population-level variation.

    PubMed

    Brasso, Rebecka L; Chiaradia, André; Polito, Michael J; Raya Rey, Andrea; Emslie, Steven D

    2015-08-15

    The wide geographic distribution of penguins (Order Sphenisciformes) throughout the Southern Hemisphere provided a unique opportunity to use a single taxonomic group as biomonitors of mercury among geographically distinct marine ecosystems. Mercury concentrations were compared among ten species of penguins representing 26 geographically distinct breeding populations. Mercury concentrations were relatively low (⩽2.00ppm) in feathers from 18/26 populations considered. Population-level differences in trophic level explained variation in mercury concentrations among Little, King, and Gentoo penguin populations. However, Southern Rockhopper and Magellanic penguins breeding on Staten Island, Tierra del Fuego, had the highest mercury concentrations relative to their conspecifics despite foraging at a lower trophic level. The concurrent use of stable isotope and mercury data allowed us to document penguin populations at the greatest risk of exposure to harmful concentrations of mercury as a result of foraging at a high trophic level or in geographic 'hot spots' of mercury availability. PMID:26072048

  8. Risks associated with the transfer of toxic organo-metallic mercury from soils into the terrestrial feed chain.

    PubMed

    Henriques, Bruno; Rodrigues, S M; Coelho, C; Cruz, N; Duarte, A C; Römkens, P F A M; Pereira, E

    2013-09-01

    Although the transfer of organo-metallic mercury (OrgHg) in aquatic food webs has long been studied, it has only been recently recognized that there is also accumulation in terrestrial systems. There is still however little information about the exposure of grazing animals to OrgHg from soils and feed as well as on risks of exposure to animal and humans. In this study we collected 78 soil samples and 40 plant samples (Lolium perenne and Brassica juncea) from agricultural fields near a contaminated industrial area and evaluated the soil-to-plant transfer of Hg as well as subsequent trophic transfer. Inorganic Hg (IHg) concentrations ranged from 0.080 to 210mgkg(-1) d.w. in soils, from 0.010 to 84mgkg(-1) d.w. in roots and from 0.020 to 6.9mgkg(-1) d.w. in shoots. OrgHg concentrations in soils varied between 0.20 and 130μgkg(-1) d.w. representing on average 0.13% of the total Hg (THg). In root and shoot samples OrgHg comprised on average 0.58% (roots) and 0.66% (shoots) of THg. Average bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) for OrgHg in relation to soil concentrations were 3.3 (for roots) and 1.5 (for shoots). The daily intake (DI) of THg in 33 sampling sites exceeded the acceptable daily intake (ADI) of THg of both cows (ADI=1.4mgd(-1)) and sheep (ADI=0.28mgd(-1)), in view of food safety associated with THg in animal kidneys. Estimated DI of OrgHg for grazing animals were up to 220μgd(-1) (for cows) and up to 33μgd(-1) (for sheep). This study suggested that solely monitoring the levels of THg in soils and feed may not allow to adequately taking into account accumulation of OrgHg in feed crops and properly address risks associated with OrgHg exposure for animals and humans. Hence, the inclusion of limits for OrgHg in feed quality and food safety legislation is advised. PMID:23917441

  9. Multifractal analysis of soil porosity based on mercury porosimetry and nitrogen adsorption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paz-Ferreiro, J.; Vidal Vázquez, E.; Miranda, J. G. V.

    2009-04-01

    The soil pore space is composed of a continuum of pores extremely variable in size which include structures smaller than nanometres and as large as macropores > 20 mm in diameter, i.e. with an upper size limit of the order of centimetres. Thus, a ratio of at least 106 is displayed in soil pore sizes. Soil pore size distribution directly influences many soil physical, chemical and biological properties. Characterization of soil structure may be achieved by pore size distribution analysis. There is not a unique method for determining soil pore size distributions all over the size scale. Mercury injection porosimetry and N2 adsorption isotherms are techniques commonly used for assessing equivalent pore size diameters in selected ranges. The Hg injection technique provides pore size distributions in the range from about 50 nm to 100 m, whereas N2 adsorption isotherms may be used for finer pores ranging in size from about 2 to 500 nm. In this work, multifractal formalism has been used to describe Hg injection porosimetry and N2 adsorption isotherms measured in a Mollisol and in a Vertisol with four different soil use intensities, ranging from native, never cultivated, land to continuous cropping. Three samples per treatment were analyzed resulting in a total of twelve samples per soil. All the Hg injection curves and N2 adsorption isotherms exhibited multifractal behaviour as shown by singularity spectra and Rényi dimension spectra. The capacity dimension, D0, for both Hg injection and N2 adsorption data sets was not significantly different from 1.00. However, significantly different values of entropy dimension, D1, and correlation dimension, D2, were obtained for mercury injection and nitrogen adsorption experimental data. For instance, entropy dimension, D1, values extracted from multifractal spectra of Hg intrusion porosimetry were on average 0.913 and varied from 0.889 to 0.939. However, the corresponding figures for N2 adsorption isotherms were on average 0

  10. Mercury emission from a cement factory and its influence on the environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukuzaki, Norio; Tamura, Ryozo; Hirano, Yuzuru; Mizushima, Yoshio

    Mercury balance was investigated in a cement factory, measuring the mercury concentration in ingredients, fuels, cement and exhaust gases, etc. Daily mercury emission quantity from the factory was estimated to be 1.5 kg, originating mostly from limestone. Gaseous and particulate mercury concentrations in ambient air were 4.1-8.7 ng m -3 and 0.15-0.68 ng m -3, respectively. Particulate mercury concentrations are remarkably higher than the background ones. The influence of mercury emission estimated from the determined mercury levels in the leaves of indicator plants reaches up to 5 km at least from the source. The sum of the mercury quantity deposited from the atmosphere and that taken by leaves of plants in the area within a 5-km radius from the factory was calculated to be about 4% of the entire mercury emitted. The mercury residue was recognized in humus and surface soil in the forest near the factory.

  11. Preservation and storage techniques for low-level aqueous mercury speciation.

    PubMed

    Parker, Jennifer L; Bloom, Nicolas S

    2005-01-20

    Although researchers today generally employ appropriate techniques for the storage and preservation of aqueous samples for ambient-level mercury (ppb) speciation, these methods continue to be poorly documented. Numerous experiments were thus conducted to investigate the effects of acidification and bottle type on holding time for various mercury species [elemental mercury (Hg(0)), ionic mercury (Hg(II)), dimethyl mercury (DMHg), monomethyl mercury (MMHg), and dissolved-to-particulate ratio] as well as total mercury (THg). We documented that THg is stable for at least 300 days when stored at 0.4-0.5% acidity in either Teflon or glass bottles. In cases where THg is adsorbed to bottle walls, the addition of BrCl at least 24 h before analysis allowed all Hg to be quantitatively recovered. Polyethylene bottles allowed diffusion of Hg(0) through the bottle walls to or from the sample, depending on the Hg concentration of the sample and storage atmosphere. MMHg in freshwater samples can be stored refrigerated and unacidified for days to weeks with no observed degradation of MMHg. For long-term storage (at least 250 days), samples should be acidified with 0.4% HCl (v/v) and kept in the dark to avoid photodegradation (approximate t(1/2)=6 months). For saltwater samples, preservation with 0.2% (v/v) H(2)SO(4) is preferred to avoid exceeding the optimal chloride concentration if the distillation procedure is used for MMHg determination. For volatile species (Hg(0) and DMHg), samples should be collected in completely full glass bottles with Teflon-lined caps, as these species are lost rapidly (t(1/2)=10-20 h) from Teflon and polyethylene bottles. Because acids can enhance the rapid oxidation of volatile species, these samples should be stored refrigerated and unacidified and processed within 1-2 days if they cannot be purged and trapped in the field. Hg(II) and the dissolved-to-particulate ratio are more stable and can be stored for a period of days to weeks without

  12. Mercury levels in sediments and mangrove oysters, Crassostrea rizophorae, from the north coast of Villa Clara, Cuba.

    PubMed

    Olivares-Rieumont, S; Lima, L; Rivero, S; Graham, D W; Alonso-Hernandez, C; Bolaño, Y

    2012-04-01

    Total mercury levels were quantified in sediments and oyster tissues (Crassostrea rizophorae) from the Sagua la Grande River estuary and offshore mangrove keys 19 km downstream of a chlor-alkali plant (CAP) in Villa Clara, Cuba. Relatively elevated total mercury levels were found in sediments from the estuary itself, ranging from 0.507 to 1.81 μg g(-1) dry weight. However, levels were lower in sediments from the keys farther from the estuary. Oyster mercury levels were always acceptable for human consumption, although levels significantly correlated in sediments and oysters across sampling sites (p < 0.05), which suggests that mercury from the CAP is impacting coastal water quality conditions. PMID:22323046

  13. Threshold increases in soil lead and mercury from tropospheric deposition across an elevational gradient.

    PubMed

    Stankwitz, Clare; Kaste, James M; Friedland, Andrew J

    2012-08-01

    Atmospheric deposition is the primary mechanism by which remote ecosystems are contaminated, but few data sets show how fluxes change and control soil metal burdens at the landform scale. We present mercury (Hg), lead ((210)Pb and total Pb), and cosmogenic beryllium-7 ((7)Be) measurements in organic (O) soil horizons at high-resolution elevation intervals of ∼60 m from 540 to 1160 m on Camels Hump in northern Vermont, USA. Across this gradient, average O horizon Hg ranges from 0.99 mg m(-2) in the low elevation deciduous forest zone to 7.6 mg m(-2) in the higher elevation coniferous forest at 1030 m. We measure two pronounced threshold increases in soil metal burdens above 801 and 934 m, corresponding to the two most common altitudes of cloud base, which coincide with changes in vegetation species. Lead-210, a unique tracer of tropospheric deposition, also increased from 3200 Bq m(-2) to 11500 Bq m(-2) in O horizons, exhibiting threshold responses at the same elevations as Hg and total Pb. Concentrations of (210)Pb and Hg in foliage double from 760 to 900 m elevation, indicating enhanced deposition across the transition from deciduous to coniferous forest. In contrast, (7)Be is constant across the entire elevational gradient because of its upper atmospheric source. This indicates that the effects of orographic precipitation have a smaller control on soil contaminant burdens than the coupled cloudwater deposition-vegetation scavenging effect in the presence of upwind sources. By measuring soil contaminants and unique tracers of atmospheric deposition, we show that tropospheric fluxes of Hg and Pb are higher by a factor of 2 in high-elevation coniferous forests than in adjacent lowlands. Total O horizon Hg and Pb burdens increase by over 4-fold with elevation because of the compounding effects of enhanced deposition and longer metal residence times at higher elevations (>50 years). PMID:22759071

  14. Fish consumption patterns and hair mercury levels in children and their mothers in 17 EU countries.

    PubMed

    Castaño, Argelia; Cutanda, Francisco; Esteban, Marta; Pärt, Peter; Navarro, Carmen; Gómez, Silvia; Rosado, Montserrat; López, Ana; López, Estrella; Exley, Karen; Schindler, Birgit K; Govarts, Eva; Casteleyn, Ludwine; Kolossa-Gehring, Marike; Fiddicke, Ulrike; Koch, Holger; Angerer, Jürgen; Den Hond, Elly; Schoeters, Greet; Sepai, Ovnair; Horvat, Milena; Knudsen, Lisbeth E; Aerts, Dominique; Joas, Anke; Biot, Pierre; Joas, Reinhard; Jiménez-Guerrero, José A; Diaz, Gema; Pirard, Catherine; Katsonouri, Andromachi; Cerna, Milena; Gutleb, Arno C; Ligocka, Danuta; Reis, Fátima M; Berglund, Marika; Lupsa, Ioana-Rodica; Halzlová, Katarína; Charlier, Corinne; Cullen, Elizabeth; Hadjipanayis, Adamos; Krsková, Andrea; Jensen, Janne F; Nielsen, Jeanette K; Schwedler, Gerda; Wilhelm, Michael; Rudnai, Peter; Középesy, Szilvia; Davidson, Fred; Fischer, Mark E; Janasik, Beata; Namorado, Sónia; Gurzau, Anca E; Jajcaj, Michal; Mazej, Darja; Tratnik, Janja Snoj; Larsson, Kristin; Lehmann, Andrea; Crettaz, Pierre; Lavranos, Giagkos; Posada, Manuel

    2015-08-01

    The toxicity of methylmercury (MeHg) in humans is well established and the main source of exposure is via the consumption of large marine fish and mammals. Of particular concern are the potential neurodevelopmental effects of early life exposure to low-levels of MeHg. Therefore, it is important that pregnant women, children and women of childbearing age are, as far as possible, protected from MeHg exposure. Within the European project DEMOCOPHES, we have analyzed mercury (Hg) in hair in 1799 mother-child pairs from 17 European countries using a strictly harmonized protocol for mercury analysis. Parallel, harmonized questionnaires on dietary habits provided information on consumption patterns of fish and marine products. After hierarchical cluster analysis of consumption habits of the mother-child pairs, the DEMOCOPHES cohort can be classified into two branches of approximately similar size: one with high fish consumption (H) and another with low consumption (L). All countries have representatives in both branches, but Belgium, Denmark, Spain, Portugal and Sweden have twice as many or more mother-child pairs in H than in L. For Switzerland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovenia and Slovakia the situation is the opposite, with more representatives in L than H. There is a strong correlation (r=0.72) in hair mercury concentration between the mother and child in the same family, which indicates that they have a similar exposure situation. The clustering of mother-child pairs on basis of their fish consumption revealed some interesting patterns. One is that for the same sea fish consumption, other food items of marine origin, like seafood products or shellfish, contribute significantly to the mercury levels in hair. We conclude that additional studies are needed to assess and quantify exposure to mercury from seafood products, in particular. The cluster analysis also showed that 95% of mothers who consume once per week fish only, and no other marine products

  15. DNA barcodes reveal species-specific mercury levels in tuna sushi that pose a health risk to consumers.

    PubMed

    Lowenstein, Jacob H; Burger, Joanna; Jeitner, Christian W; Amato, George; Kolokotronis, Sergios-Orestis; Gochfeld, Michael

    2010-10-23

    Excessive ingestion of mercury--a health hazard associated with consuming predatory fishes--damages neurological, sensory-motor and cardiovascular functioning. The mercury levels found in Bigeye Tuna (Thunnus obesus) and bluefin tuna species (Thunnus maccoyii, Thunnus orientalis, and Thunnus thynnus), exceed or approach levels permissible by Canada, the European Union, Japan, the US, and the World Health Organization. We used DNA barcodes to identify tuna sushi samples analysed for mercury and demonstrate that the ability to identify cryptic samples in the market place allows regulatory agencies to more accurately measure the risk faced by fish consumers and enact policies that better safeguard their health. PMID:20410032

  16. Remote sensing of Mercury-contaminated soils through plant reflection spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunagan, S. C.; Gilmore, M. S.; Varekamp, J. C.

    2005-12-01

    The spatial extent of Hg contamination is often poorly known because current methods used to identify and map Hg soil contamination on a regional scale are time consuming and expensive. Here we test whether vegetation growing in Hg-contaminated soils has discernible characteristics in visible/near-infrared (VNIR, 350-2500nm) spectra. Previous work indicates that Hg can cause chemical and structural changes in plant tissue, including chlorophyll substitution and cell damage, which we predict may alter the reflectance spectra of plants in a measurable way. To test this hypothesis, Mustard Spinach plants (n=21) were grown in mercury-spiked soils and in Hg-contaminated soils collected in the field. The plants were grown under controlled laboratory conditions over a full growth cycle. Foliar Hg concentrations (0.174-3.993ppm) of the Mustard Spinach plants were positively correlated with Hg concentrations of soils (0.091-39.35ppm). Leaf Hg increased throughout the growth cycle but decreased in the plants grown in the Hg-spiked and field-contaminated soil at the end of the growth cycle. Leaf Hg uptake appears to occur through both roots and leaves and may vary as a function of bioavailability of Hg in the soils. Reflectance spectra of leaves were measured under artificial light in the laboratory. The potential spectral effects of Hg on the plants were quantified with selected vegetation indices (VIs) including Ratio Vegetation Index (RVI), Red Edge Position (REP) and Amplitude (REA) and Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and compared to foliar Hg concentrations. Correlations between VIs and foliar Hg concentrations are not statistically significant. However, RVI and REP values of plants grown in Hg-spiked and in field-contaminated soils are lower relative to those from the control plants during the early and middle portions of the growth cycle and decrease more rapidly than those from control plants at the end of the growth cycle. These lower RVI and REP values

  17. Mercury levels in human hair and sex factors

    SciTech Connect

    Shimomura, S.; Kimura, A.; Nakagawa, H.; Takao, M.

    1980-06-01

    Evidence has been presented: (1) that the geometric mean is essential to the statistical analysis of the result of the amount of Hg in hair, and (2) that the individual Hg level in hair must be evaluated by the standard deviation of logarithmic values. The Hg level in hair obtained from 1324 inhabitants on Shikoku Island showed logarithmic-normal distribution curves, with higher values in males than in females. To verify such a sexual difference, hair samples were obtained from male and female children (N = 346), teenagers (N = 300), and adults (N = 354) living in an agricultural area of Tokushima Prefecture on the island. As the result, males were found to have more Hg than females in sexually mature teenagers and adults (P < 0.05 by F test) but not in younger children.

  18. FIELD MEASUREMENT TECHNOLOGY FOR MERCURY IN SOIL AND SEDIMENT OHIO LUMEX'S RA-915+/RP-91C MERCURY ANALYZER

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ohio Lumex's RA915+/91 C mercury analyzer was demonstrated under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation Program in May 2003, at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. The purpose of the Demonstration was to c...

  19. FIELD MEASUREMENT TECHNOLOGY FOR MERCURY IN SOIL AND SEDIMENT MILESTONE INC.'S DIRECT MERCURY ANALYZER (DMA)-80

    EPA Science Inventory

    Milestone's Direct Mercury Analyzer (DMA-80) was demonstrated under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation Program in May 2003 at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. The purpose of the Demonstration was to...

  20. Hair Mercury Levels Detection in Fishermen from Sicily (Italy) by ICP-MS Method after Microwave-Assisted Digestion

    PubMed Central

    Giangrosso, Giuseppe; Cammilleri, Gaetano; Macaluso, Andrea; Vella, Antonio; D'Orazio, Nicolantonio; Graci, Stefania; Lo Dico, Gianluigi Maria; Galvano, Fabio; Giangrosso, Margherita; Ferrantelli, Vincenzo

    2016-01-01

    A number of ninety-six hair samples from Sicilian fishermen were examined for total mercury detection by an Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) method. The mercury levels obtained were compared with mercury levels of 96 hair samples from a control group, in order to assess potential exposure to heavy metals of Sicilian fishermen due to fish consumption and closeness to industrial activities. Furthermore, the mercury levels obtained from hair samples were sorted by sampling area in order to verify the possible risks linked to the different locations. The overall mean concentration in the hair of the population of fishermen was 6.45 ± 7.03 μg g−1, with a highest value in a fisherman of Sciacca (16.48 μg g−1). Hair mercury concentration in fishermen group was significantly higher than in control group (p < 0.01). There was no significant difference in hair total mercury concentrations between sampling areas (p > 0.05). The results of this study indicate a greater risk of exposure to mercury in Sicilian fishermen, in comparison to the control population, due to the high consumption of fish and the close relationship with sources of exposure (ports, dumps, etc.). PMID:27127456

  1. Remediation of mercury contaminated sites - A review.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jianxu; Feng, Xinbin; Anderson, Christopher W N; Xing, Ying; Shang, Lihai

    2012-06-30

    Environmental contamination caused by mercury is a serious problem worldwide. Coal combustion, mercury and gold mining activities and industrial activities have led to an increase in the mercury concentration in soil. The objective of this paper is to present an up-to-date understanding of the available techniques for the remediation of soil contaminated with mercury through considering: mercury contamination in soil, mercury speciation in soil; mercury toxicity to humans, plants and microorganisms, and remediation options. This paper describes the commonly employed and emerging techniques for mercury remediation, namely: stabilization/solidification (S/S), immobilization, vitrification, thermal desorption, nanotechnology, soil washing, electro-remediation, phytostabilization, phytoextraction and phytovolatilization. PMID:22579459

  2. Measurement of total dissolved mercury at the picomolar level using ICP-SFMS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Y.; Huh, Y.; Lee, K.; Hur, S.; Hong, S.

    2009-12-01

    A series of tests were carried out to measure total mercury in solution at the picomolar (pM, 10-12 M) level using inductively coupled plasma sector field mass spectrometry (ICP-SFMS). For low-matrix snow and ice samples for which we are developing this method, ICP-SFMS offers advantages over the conventional cold vapor generation method by reducing the amount of sample consumed, by eliminating complicated pretreatment steps, and by supporting concurrent multi-elemental analysis. However, the loss of volatile mercury species during sample storage in polyethylene containers, preparation of standards and instrumental analyses can pose serious quantification problems. According to our tests of different container material and matrix acidity, stability was maintained during the measurement period for glass bottles with Teflon-lined caps and 2% (v/v) HNO3 matrix. Teflon bottles, however, require the addition of auric ion (~100 nM) to stabilize the dilute mercury solution, increasing blank levels by several pM.

  3. Atmospheric Deposition and Fate of Mercury in High-altitude Watersheds of the Rocky Mountains.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Campbell, D. H.; Mast, M. A.; Ingersoll, G. P.; Manthorne, D. J.; Krabbenhoft, D. P.; Taylor, H. E.; Aiken, G. R.; Schuster, P. F.; Reddy, M. M.

    2003-12-01

    Despite the potential for cold high-altitude ecosystems to act as sinks in the global mercury cycle, atmospheric deposition and fate of mercury have not been measured extensively at mountain sites in the Western United States. At Buffalo Pass in northwestern Colorado (the highest site in the national Mercury Deposition Network at 3234 m elevation), mercury in wet deposition was 9 μ gm-2 in 2000, comparable to many sites in the upper Midwestern United States where fish consumption advisories are widespread because of elevated levels of mercury from atmospheric deposition. Similar levels of mercury deposition were measured about 90 km east of Buffalo Pass at Loch Vale in Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) during 2002. Concentrations of total mercury in headwater streams in RMNP averaged 2-4 ngL-1 during spring and summer of 2001-2002. Higher concentrations were observed during snowmelt and rainfall events. Dissolved mercury was generally greater than particulate mercury in these clear mountain streams. Mercury and dissolved organic carbon peaked as soils were flushed during early snowmelt and rainy summer periods. Overall, mercury deposition was greater than mercury export, indicating accumulation in alpine/subalpine ecosystems; however, the mercury exported in streamflow may contribute substantially to mercury loading in downstream lakes and reservoirs where fish consumption advisories have increased. Methyl mercury concentrations measured in the streams in 2002 were generally near or less than detection limits, however, extreme drought conditions limited hydrologic flushing of soils and wetlands that may be sources of methyl mercury. In 2003, surface and ground water from various alpine and subalpine landscapes were sampled to determine sources and transport of total and methyl mercury. The elevated levels of mercury in atmospheric deposition indicate a need for better understanding of mercury cycling and transport in high-altitude ecosystems of Western North

  4. Disparities in Children's Blood Lead and Mercury Levels According to Community and Individual Socioeconomic Positions.

    PubMed

    Lim, Sinye; Ha, Mina; Hwang, Seung-Sik; Son, Mia; Kwon, Ho-Jang

    2015-06-01

    We aimed to examine the associations between blood lead and mercury levels and individual and community level socioeconomic positions (SEPs) in school-aged children. A longitudinal cohort study was performed in 33 elementary schools in 10 cities in Korea. Among a total of 6094 children included at baseline, the final study population, 2281 children followed-up biennially, were analyzed. The geometric mean (GM) levels of blood lead were 1.73 μg/dL (range 0.02-9.26) and 1.56 μg/dL (range 0.02-6.83) for male and female children, respectively. The blood lead levels were significantly higher in males, children living in rural areas, and those with lower individual SEP. The GM levels of blood mercury were 2.07 μg/L (range 0.09-12.67) and 2.06 μg/L (range 0.03-11.74) for males and females, respectively. Increased blood mercury levels were significantly associated with urban areas, higher individual SEP, and more deprived communities. The risk of high blood lead level was significantly higher for the lower individual SEP (odds ratio (OR) 2.18, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.36-3.50 in the lowest educational attainment of the father), with a significant dose-response relationship observed after adjusting for the community SEP. The association between high blood lead levels and lower individual SEP was much stronger in the more deprived communities (OR 2.88, 95% CI 1.27-6.53) than in the less deprived communities (OR 1.40, 95% CI 0.76-2.59), and showed a significant decreasing trend during the follow-up only in the less deprived communities. The risk of high blood mercury levels was higher in higher individual SEP (OR 0.64, 95% CI 0.40-1.03 in the lowest educational attainment of the father), with a significant dose-response relationship noted. Significant decreasing trends were observed during the follow-up both in the less and more deprived communities. From a public health point-of-view, community level intervention with different approaches for different metals is

  5. Fate and transport of mercury in soil systems : a numerical model in HP1 and sensitivity analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leterme, Bertrand; Jacques, Diederik

    2013-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) poses threats for human health and the environment, notably due to its persistence and its ability to bioaccumulate in ecosystems. Anthropogenic activities are major contributors of mercury release to soils. Main sources of contamination include manufacturing (chlor-alkali plants, manometer spill), mine tailings from mercury, gold and silver mining industries, wood preservation. The objective of this study was to develop a reactive transport model for simulating mercury fate and transport in the unsaturated zone, and to gain insight in the fate and transport of Hg following anthropogenic soil contamination. The present work is done in the framework of the IMaHg project, which aims at providing recommendations to improve management of sites contaminated by mercury within the SNOWMAN funding framework. A model of mercury fate and transport in soil systems was developed using the reactive transport code HP1 (Jacques and Šimůnek, 2010). The geochemical database THERMODDEM (Blanc et al., 2012) is used, augmented with some speciation data from (Skyllberg, 2012). The main processes accounted for in the model are : Hg aqueous speciation (including complexation with dissolved organic matter (DOM) - humic and fulvic acids, and thiol groups), Hg sorption to solid organic matter (SOM), dissolution of solid phase Hg (e.g. cinnabar HgS(s)), dissolution of Hg non-aqueous liquid phase (NAPL), sunlight-driven Hg(II) reduction to Hg(0), Hg(0) diffusion in the gas phase and volatilization, DOM sorption to soil minerals. Colloid facilitated transport is implicitly accounted for by solute transport of Hg-DOM complexes. Because we focused on soil systems having a high Hg contamination, some processes showing relatively smaller Hg fluxes could be neglected such as vegetation uptake and atmospheric wet and dry deposition. NAPL migration and entrapment is not modelled, as pollution is assumed to be historical and only residual NAPL to be present. Mercury methylation and

  6. Mercury interferes with endogenous antioxidant levels in Yukon River subsistence-fed sled dogs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunlap, Kriya L.; Reynolds, Arleigh J.; Gerlach, S. Craig; Duffy, Lawrence K.

    2011-10-01

    Before adopting modern corn-and-grain-based western processed diets, circumpolar people had a high fat and protein subsistence diet and exhibited a low incidence of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Some health benefits are attributable to a subsistence diet that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants. Pollution, both global and local, is a threat to wild foods, as it introduces contaminants into the food system. Northern indigenous people and their sled dogs are exposed to a variety of contaminants, including mercury, that accumulate in the fish and game that they consume. The sled dogs in Alaskan villages are maintained on the same subsistence foods as their human counterparts, primarily salmon, and therefore they can be used as a food systems model for researching the impact of changes in dietary components. In this study, the antioxidant status and mercury levels were measured for village sled dogs along the Yukon River. A reference kennel, maintained on a nutritionally balanced commercial diet, was also measured for comparison. Total antioxidant status was inversely correlated with the external stressor mercury.

  7. Monitoring and assessment of mercury pollution in the vicinity of a chloralkali plant. IV. Bioconcentration of mercury in in situ aquatic and terrestrial plants at Ganjam, India.

    PubMed

    Lenka, M; Panda, K K; Panda, B B

    1992-02-01

    In situ aquatic and terrestrial plants including a few vegetable and crop plants growing in and around a chloralkali plant at Ganjam, India were analyzed for concentrations of root and shoot mercury. The aquatic plants found to bioconcentrate mercury to different degrees included Marsilea spp., Spirodela polyrhiza, Jussiea repens, Paspalum scrobiculatam, Pistia stratiotes, Eichhornia crassipes, Hygrophila schulli, Monochoria hastata and Bacopa monniera. Among wild terrestrial plants Chloris barbata, Cynodon dactylon, Cyperus rotundus and Croton bonplandianum were found growing on heavily contaminated soil containing mercury as high as 557 mg/kg. Analysis of mercury in root and shoot of these plants in relation to the mercury levels in soil indicated a significant correlation between soil and plant mercury with the exception of C. bonplandianum. Furthermore, the tolerance to mercury toxicity was highest with C. barbata followed by C. dactylon and C. rotundus, in that order. The rice plants analyzed from the surrounding agricultural fields did not show any significant levels of bioconcentrated mercury. Of the different vegetables grown in a contaminated kitchen garden with mercury level at 8.91 mg/kg, the two leafy vegetables, namely cabbage (Brassica oleracea) and amaranthus (Amaranthus oleraceous), were found to bioconcentrate mercury at statistically significant levels. The overall study indicates that the mercury pollution is very much localized to the specific sites in the vicinity of the chloralkali plant. PMID:1536599

  8. High levels of mercury contamination in multiple media of the Carson River drainage basin of Nevada: implications for risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Gustin, M S; Taylor, G E; Leonard, T L

    1994-09-01

    Approximately 5.5 x 109 g (4.0 x 105) of mercury was discharged into the Carson River Drainage Basin of west-central Nevada during processing of the gold- and silver-rich Comstock ore in the late 1800s. For the past 13 decades, mercury has been redistributed throughout 500 km2 of the basin, and concentrations are some of the highest reported values in North America. This article documents the concentrations of mercury in the air, water, and substrate at both contaminated and noncontaminated sites within the basin and discusses the implications for risk assessment. At contaminated areas, the range of mercury concentrations are as follows: mill tailings, 3-1610 micrograms/g; unfiltered reservoir water, 53-591 ng/l; atmospheric vapor, 2-294 ng/m3. These values are three to five orders of magnitude greater than natural background. In all media at contaminated sites, concentrations are spatially variable, and air and water mercury concentrations vary temporally. The study are in situated in a natural mercuriferous belt, and regional background mercury concentrations in all environmental media are higher than values typically cited for natural background. As a mercury-contaminated site in North America, the Carson River Drainage Basin is unusual for a number of reasons, including its location in a natural mercuriferous belt, high and sustained levels of anthropogenic mercury inputs, long exposure time, aridity of the climate, and the riparian setting in an arid landscape, where biological activity is concentrated in the same areas that contain high levels of mercury in multiple media. PMID:9657709

  9. High levels of mercury contamination in multiple media of the Carson River Drainage Basin of Nevada: Implications for risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Gustin, M.S.; Taylor, G.E. Jr.; Leonard, T.L. Desert Research Institute, Reno, NV )

    1994-09-01

    Approximately 5.5 x 10[sup 9] g (4.0 x 10[sup 5] l) of mercury was discharged into the Carson River Drainage Basin of west-central Nevada during processing of the gold- and silver-rich Comstock ore in the late 1800s. For the past 13 decades, mercury has been redistributed throughout 500 km[sup 2] of the basin, and concentrations are some of the highest reported values in North America. This article documents the concentration of mercury in the air, water, and substrate at both contaminated and noncontaminated sites within the basin and discusses the implications for risk assessment. At contaminated areas, the range of mercury concentrations are as follows: mill tailings, 3-1610 [mu]g/g; unfiltered reservoir water, 53-591 ng/l; atmospheric vapor, 2-294 ng/m[sup 3]. These values are three to five orders of magnitude greater than natural background. In all media at contaminated sites, concentrations are spatially variable, and air and water mercury concentrations vary temporally. The study area is situated in a natural mercuriferous belt, and regional background mercury concentrations in all environmental media are higher than values typically cited for natural background. As a mercury-contaminated site in North America, the Carson River Drainage Basin is unusual for a number of reasons, including its location in a natural mercuriferous belt, high and sustained levels of anthropogenic mercury inputs, long exposure time, aridity of the climate, and the riparian setting in an arid landscape, where biological activity is concentrated in the same areas that contain high levels of mercury in multiple media. 37 refs., 4 figs., 3 tabs.

  10. High levels of mercury contamination in multiple media of the Carson River drainage basin of Nevada: implications for risk assessment.

    PubMed Central

    Gustin, M S; Taylor, G E; Leonard, T L

    1994-01-01

    Approximately 5.5 x 109 g (4.0 x 105) of mercury was discharged into the Carson River Drainage Basin of west-central Nevada during processing of the gold- and silver-rich Comstock ore in the late 1800s. For the past 13 decades, mercury has been redistributed throughout 500 km2 of the basin, and concentrations are some of the highest reported values in North America. This article documents the concentrations of mercury in the air, water, and substrate at both contaminated and noncontaminated sites within the basin and discusses the implications for risk assessment. At contaminated areas, the range of mercury concentrations are as follows: mill tailings, 3-1610 micrograms/g; unfiltered reservoir water, 53-591 ng/l; atmospheric vapor, 2-294 ng/m3. These values are three to five orders of magnitude greater than natural background. In all media at contaminated sites, concentrations are spatially variable, and air and water mercury concentrations vary temporally. The study are in situated in a natural mercuriferous belt, and regional background mercury concentrations in all environmental media are higher than values typically cited for natural background. As a mercury-contaminated site in North America, the Carson River Drainage Basin is unusual for a number of reasons, including its location in a natural mercuriferous belt, high and sustained levels of anthropogenic mercury inputs, long exposure time, aridity of the climate, and the riparian setting in an arid landscape, where biological activity is concentrated in the same areas that contain high levels of mercury in multiple media. Images Figure 1. Figure 2. Figure 3. Figure 4. Figure 4. Figure 4. PMID:9657709

  11. Mercury levels, reproduction, and hematology in western grebes from three California Lakes, USA

    SciTech Connect

    Elbert, R.A.; Anderson, D.W.

    1998-02-01

    Twenty-three healthy adult western and Clark`s grebes (Aechmorphorus occidentalis and Aechmorphorus clarkii) were collected at three study sites in California, USA, in 1992: Clear Lake, Lake County; Eagle Lake, Lassen County; and Tule Lake, Siskiyou County. Liver, kidney, breast muscle, and brain were analyzed for total mercury (Hg) concentration (ppm wet weight), and blood was analyzed for various blood parameters. Clear Lake birds had greater Hg concentrations in kidney, breast muscle, and brain than birds from the other two lakes whereas liver concentrations were not statistically different. Average concentrations for Clear Lake birds were 2.74 ppm for liver, 2.06 ppm for kidney, 1.06 ppm for breast muscle, and 0.28 ppm for brain. The tissue levels of kidney, breast muscle, and brain at the other two study sites were one half the levels found at Clear Lake. These mean tissue levels were near, but below, those known to cause adverse effects. When data from all sites were merged, kidney, breast muscle, and brain concentrations are positively correlated to each other. Liver concentrations were not correlated to any other value. Brain Hg concentrations were also negatively correlated to blood potassium and blood phosphorus levels. Kidney Hg levels were positively correlated to percent blood heterophils and negatively correlated to percent eosinophils, suggesting that mercury levels might be affecting immune function. These biomarkers could not be related to any obvious ecological effects.

  12. Levels of cadmium and mercury in the hair of Atlantic walruses (Odobenus rosmarus rosmarus) from Svalbard, Norway

    SciTech Connect

    Wiig, O.; Renzoni, A.; Gjertz, I.

    1999-08-01

    Hair samples of 15 adult male Atlantic walruses (Odobenus rosmarus rosmarus) collected from anesthetized individuals at Svalbard, Norway, were analyzed for cadmium and total mercury. The mean level of cadmium was 0.860 {+-} 0.321 {micro}g/g dry weight and the mean level of mercury was 0.235 {+-} 0.100 {micro}g/g dry weight. Levels of cadmium and mercury in hair of walruses from other areas are not known. Both cadmium and mercury levels in hair of walruses from Svalbard are relatively low compared to the levels found in the hair of other marine mammal species. It has been documented from a number of marine species, including marine mammals such as ringed seals and polar bears, that both cadmium and mercury levels of Svalbard are lower than in other areas. It is uncertain as to what degree levels in hair reflect levels in internal organs in walruses. In rare and highly endangered species or populations tissue samples can be difficult to collect. In walruses, it is possible to collect hair from anesthetized individuals or at the haul-out sites during molt, to monitor heavy metal levels of the population.

  13. Impact of mercury atmospheric deposition on soils and streams in a mountainous catchment (Vosges, France) polluted by chlor-alkali industrial activity: the important trapping role of the organic matter.

    PubMed

    Hissler, Christophe; Probst, Jean-Luc

    2006-05-15

    Total atmospheric Hg contamination in a French mountainous catchment upstream from a chlor-alkali industrial site was assessed using Hg concentrations in the deepest soil horizon, in the stream bottom sediments, in river waters and in bryophytes. The natural background level of Hg content deriving from rock weathering was estimated to 32 ng g(-1) in the deepest soil layers. The soils appear to be Hg contaminated in two stages: atmospheric deposition and leaching through the soil profiles of Hg-organic matter complexes. The Hg enrichment factor (EF(Hg)(Sc)) which could be calculated by normalization to a conservative element like Sc, allows to estimate the major contribution (63% to 95%) of the atmospheric inputs, even in the upper part of the basin. This contribution may be attributed to diffuse regional atmospheric deposition of Hg and is mainly due to the geographic location of the chlor-alkali plant. This study shows for the first time that the mercury enrichment is proportional to the carbon content indicating that most of the atmospheric mercury deposition is trapped by the organic matter contained in the soils and in the stream sediments. The Hg stock in the soils of the upper catchment and the soil erosion contribution to the riverine Hg fluxes are estimated for the first time and allow to assess the Hg residence time. It indicates that Hg is trapped in the soils of such a polluted catchment for probably several thousand years. PMID:16168464

  14. Accumulation, transfer, and potential sources of mercury in the soil-wheat system under field conditions over the Loess Plateau, northwest China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shengli; Nan, Zhongren; Prete, Daniel; Ma, Jianmin; Liao, Qin; Zhang, Qian

    2016-10-15

    There is limited information on accumulation, transfer, and source of mercury in wheats under field conditions over the Loess Plateau, northwest China. The present study collected 26 pairs of topsoil and whole wheat samples (roots, stems, leaves, shells, and grains) from Dongdagou stream watershed and upper Xidagou stream watershed, Baiyin City, northwest China. Hg concentrations from these samples were used to identify their relationships with soil properties, interactions with other metals, localization of Hg in the different wheat tissues, bio-concentration and transfer of Hg, and major sources of Hg in wheat. Results show that Hg levels in 11 out of 26 sampled soils (42.3% of soil samples) exceeded Hg limit of grade II soil environmental quality standards in China (1.0mg·kg(-1)). Likewise, it was also found that Hg in over 50% of wheat grain samples reached or exceeded the maximum permissible food safety levels (0.02mg·kg(-1)) according to the General Standard of Contaminants in Food in China (GB 2762-2012). The spatial distribution pattern of Hg in wheats grains was different from that in the sampled soils. Hg concentrations in different wheat tissues were highest in roots, followed by leaves, stalks, shells, and grains, respectively. Bio-concentration factors (BCF) of Hg in almost all grains samples were one or two orders of magnitude lower than that in roots, except for two wheat samples. The translocation factors (TF) of Hg in wheat tissues on average were leaves>stems>shells>grains. The spatial distribution of Hg and its correlation with other heavy metal detected simultaneously in the soil samples suggested that the Hg soil contamination was probably caused by past sewage irrigation practices and atmospheric deposition. Correlation analysis revealed that the principle source of Hg in wheat roots was very likely from Hg contaminated soils. PMID:27300562

  15. Mercury and selenium levels in 19 species of saltwater fish from New Jersey as a function of species, size, and season.

    PubMed

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael

    2011-03-15

    There are few data on risks to biota and humans from mercury levels in saltwater fish. This paper examines mercury and selenium levels in muscle of 19 species of fish caught by recreational fisherfolk off the New Jersey shore, as a function of species of fish, size, and season, and risk of mercury to consumers. Average mercury levels ranged from 0.01 ppm (wet weight) (Menhaden Brevoortia tyrannus) to 1.83 ppm (Mako Shark Isurus oxyrinchus). There were four categories of mercury levels: very high (only Mako), high (averaging 0.3-0.5 ppm, 3 species), medium (0.14-0.20 ppm, 10 species), and low (below 0.13 ppm, 5 species). Average selenium levels for the fish species ranged from 0.18 ppm to 0.58 ppm, and had lower variability than mercury (coefficient of variation=38.3 vs 69.1%), consistent with homeostatic regulation of this essential element. The correlation between mercury and selenium was significantly positive for five and negative for two species. Mercury levels showed significant positive correlations with fish size for ten species. Size was the best predictor of mercury levels. Selenium showed no consistent relationship to fish length. Over half of the fish species had some individual fish with mercury levels over 0.3 ppm, and a third had fish with levels over 0.5 ppm, levels that pose a human health risk for high end consumers. Conversely several fish species had no individuals above 0.5 ppm, and few above 0.3 ppm, suggesting that people who eat fish frequently, can reduce their risk from mercury by selecting which species (and which size) to consume. Overall, with the exception of shark, Bluefin Tuna (Thunnus thynnus), Bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) and Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis), the species sampled are generally medium to low in mercury concentration. Selenium:mercury molar ratios were generally above 1:1, except for the Mako shark. PMID:21292311

  16. Applications of organic and inorganic amendments induce changes in the mobility of mercury and macro- and micronutrients of soils.

    PubMed

    García-Sánchez, Mercedes; Sípková, Adéla; Száková, Jiřina; Kaplan, Lukáš; Ochecová, Pavla; Tlustoš, Pavel

    2014-01-01

    Both soil organic matter and sulfur (S) can reduce or even suppress mercury (Hg) mobility and bioavailability in soil. A batch incubation experiment was conducted with a Chernozem and a Luvisol artificially contaminated by 440 mg · kg(-1) Hg showing wide differences in their physicochemical properties and available nutrients. The individual treatments were (i) digestate from the anaerobic fermentation of biowaste; (ii) fly ash from wood chip combustion; and (iii) ammonium sulfate, and every treatment was added with the same amount of S. The mobile Hg portion in Chernozem was highly reduced by adding digestate, even after 1 day of incubation, compared to control. Meanwhile, the outcome of these treatments was a decrease of mobile Hg forms as a function of incubation time whereas the contents of magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and phosphorus (P) were stimulated by the addition of digestate in both soils. The available calcium (Ca) contents were not affected by the digestate addition. The experiment proved digestate application as the efficient measure for fast reduction of mobile Hg at extremely contaminated soils. Moreover, the decrease of the mobile mercury portion was followed by improvement of the nutrient status of the soils. PMID:25401138

  17. Applications of Organic and Inorganic Amendments Induce Changes in the Mobility of Mercury and Macro- and Micronutrients of Soils

    PubMed Central

    García-Sánchez, Mercedes; Šípková, Adéla; Száková, Jiřina; Kaplan, Lukáš; Ochecová, Pavla; Tlustoš, Pavel

    2014-01-01

    Both soil organic matter and sulfur (S) can reduce or even suppress mercury (Hg) mobility and bioavailability in soil. A batch incubation experiment was conducted with a Chernozem and a Luvisol artificially contaminated by 440 mg·kg−1 Hg showing wide differences in their physicochemical properties and available nutrients. The individual treatments were (i) digestate from the anaerobic fermentation of biowaste; (ii) fly ash from wood chip combustion; and (iii) ammonium sulfate, and every treatment was added with the same amount of S. The mobile Hg portion in Chernozem was highly reduced by adding digestate, even after 1 day of incubation, compared to control. Meanwhile, the outcome of these treatments was a decrease of mobile Hg forms as a function of incubation time whereas the contents of magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and phosphorus (P) were stimulated by the addition of digestate in both soils. The available calcium (Ca) contents were not affected by the digestate addition. The experiment proved digestate application as the efficient measure for fast reduction of mobile Hg at extremely contaminated soils. Moreover, the decrease of the mobile mercury portion was followed by improvement of the nutrient status of the soils. PMID:25401138

  18. Levels of mercury in alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) collected along a transect through the Florida Everglades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rumbold, D.G.; Fink, L.E.; Laine, K.A.; Niemczyk, S.L.; Chandrasekhar, T.; Wankel, Scott D.; Kendall, C.

    2002-01-01

    As part of a multi-agency study of alligator health, 28 American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) were captured along a transect through the Florida Everglades in 1999. Liver and tail muscle tissues were sampled and analyzed on a wet weight basis for total mercury (THg) using cold-vapor atomic absorption spectrophotometry. All tissues had detectable concentrations of THg that ranged from 0.6 to 17 mg/kg in liver and from 0.1 to 1.8 mg/kg in tail muscle. THg was more concentrated in liver tissue than tail muscle, but levels were highly correlated between tissues. THg concentrations in tissue differed significantly among locations, with animals from Everglades National Park (ENP) having mean concentrations of THg in liver (10.4 mg/kg) and tail muscle (1.2 mg/kg) that were two-fold higher than basin-wide averages (4.9 and 0.64 mg/kg, respectively). The reasons for higher contamination of ENP alligators were unclear and could not be explained by differences in sex, length, weight or animal age. While ??15N values were positively correlated with THg concentrations in tail muscle, spatial patterns in isotopic composition did not explain the elevated THg levels in ENP alligators. Therefore, it appears that ENP alligators were more highly exposed to mercury in their environment than individuals in other areas. Comparisons to a previous survey by Yanochko et al. [Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 32 (1997) 323] suggest that mercury levels have declined in some Everglades alligators since 1994. ?? 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Long-term changes in fish mercury levels in the historically impacted English-Wabigoon River system (Canada).

    PubMed

    Neff, Margaret R; Bhavsar, Satyendra P; Arhonditsis, George B; Fletcher, Rachael; Jackson, Donald A

    2012-09-01

    The English-Wabigoon River system in Northwestern Ontario, Canada, was one of the most heavily mercury-contaminated waterways in the world due to historical discharges in the 1960s from a chlor-alkali plant. This study examines long-term (1970-2010) monitoring data to assess temporal trends in mercury contamination in Walleye, Northern Pike and Lake Whitefish, three species important for sport and subsistence fishing in this region, using dynamic linear modeling and piecewise regression. For all lakes and species, there is a significant decline (36-94%) in mercury concentrations through time; however, there is evidence that this decline is either slowing down or levelling off. Concentrations in the English-Wabigoon fish are elevated, and may still present a potential health risk to humans consuming fish from this system. Various biotic and abiotic factors are examined as possible explanations to slowing rates of decline in mercury concentrations observed in the mid-1980s. PMID:22785387

  20. Optical and Electrical Studies of the Double Acceptor Levels of the Mercury Vacancies in HgCdTe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-10-01

    Correlations between photoluminescence and temperature-dependent Hall measurements were carried out on unintentionally doped HgCdTe epilayers with cadmium composition of 32.7%. These films were grown by liquid-phase epitaxy and post-annealed under different conditions as follows: a p-type annealing was used to control the mercury vacancy concentration, and an n-type annealing under saturated mercury atmosphere was used to fill the mercury vacancies. Comparison of the results obtained by these two characterization techniques allowed us to identify the two acceptor energy levels of the mercury vacancy. Moreover, the "U-negativity" of the vacancy was evidenced: the ionized state V- is stabilized under the neutral state V0 by the dominance of the Jahn-Teller effect over Coulombic repulsion. Finally, three epilayers with different cadmium compositions were also characterized to complete this study.

  1. Mercury in the environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fulkerson, W.; Lyon, W. S.; Shults, W. D.; Wallace, R. A.

    1972-01-01

    Problems in assessing mercury concentrations in environmental materials are discussed. Data for situations involving air, water, rocks, soils, sediments, sludges, fossil fuels, plants, animals, foods, and man are drawn together and briefly evaluated. Details are provided regarding the toxicity of mercury along with tentative standards and guidelines for mercury in air, drinking water, and food.

  2. Complexation of Mercury(II) in Soil Organic Matter: EXAFS Evidence for Linear Two-Coordination with Reduced Sulfur Groups

    SciTech Connect

    Skyllberg,U.; Bloom, P.; Qian, J.; Lin, C.; Bleam, W.

    2006-01-01

    The chemical speciation of inorganic mercury (Hg) is to a great extent controlling biologically mediated processes, such as mercury methylation, in soils, sediments, and surface waters. Of utmost importance are complexation reactions with functional groups of natural organic matter (NOM), indirectly determining concentrations of bioavailable, inorganic Hg species. Two previous extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) spectroscopic studies have revealed that reduced organic sulfur (S) and oxygen/nitrogen (O/N) groups are involved in the complexation of Hg(II) to humic substances extracted from organic soils. In this work, covering intact organic soils and extending to much lower concentrations of Hg than before, we show that Hg is complexed by two reduced organic S groups (likely thiols) at a distance of 2.33 Angstroms in a linear configuration. Furthermore, a third reduced S (likely an organic sulfide) was indicated to contribute with a weaker second shell attraction at a distance of 2.92-3.08 Angstroms. When all high-affinity S sites, corresponding to 20-30% of total reduced organic S, were saturated, a structure involving one carbonyl-O or amino-N at 2.07 Angstroms and one carboxyl-O at 2.84 Angstroms in the first shell, and two second shell C atoms at an average distance of 3.14 Angstroms, gave the best fit to data. Similar results were obtained for humic acid extracted from an organic wetland soil. We conclude that models that are in current use to describe the biogeochemistry of mercury and to calculate thermodynamic processes need to include a two-coordinated complexation of Hg(II) to reduced organic sulfur groups in NOM in soils and waters.

  3. Targeting geothermal exploration sites in the Mount St. Helens area using soil mercury surveys

    SciTech Connect

    Holmes, J.; Waugh, K.

    1983-11-01

    The background mercury level was determined for the areas studied, providing preliminary information for future work. Identification of areas which might merit more intensive sampling was also accomplished. The clusters of samples with high Hg concentrations in both areas may indicate high heat flow and should be investigated further. Problems involving the use of this method in the Cascades were also identified. Both areas north and south of the mountain had approximately the same standard deviation (expressed as a percentage of the mean), even though the sampling horizons seemed much more consistent and less disturbed in the Marble Mountain area than in the Green River Soda Springs area. This may indicate that for these areas, secondary controls are more important, or that Hg anomalies are much smaller than indicated in studies of other areas.

  4. How humic substances dominate mercury geochemistry in contaminated floodplain soils and sediments

    SciTech Connect

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

    1998-09-01

    The interaction of mercury (Hg) and humic substances (hs) was studied in floodplain topsoils and surface sediments of the contaminated German river Elbe. An intimate coupling exists between the geochemical cycles of Hg and organic carbon (OC) in this ecosystem. Humic substances exert a dominant influence on several important parallel geochemical pathways of Hg, including binding, transformation, and transport processes. Significant differences exist between the Hg-hs associations in floodplains and sediments. Both humic acids (ha) and fulvic acids (fa) contribute to Hg binding in the sediments. In contrast, ultrafiltration experiments proved that Hg in the floodplain soils is almost exclusively bound to very large humic acids (ha) with a nominal molecular weight (MW) > 300,000. Successive cation and anion exchange experiments demonstrated that those Hg-ha complexes are inert toward competition by other cations, and also apparently predominantly electroneutral. Speciation transformation reactions in the solid phase were investigated by sequential extraction and thermal release experiments. Upon addition of Hg model compounds to a sediment matrix, all species were transformed to the same new speciation pattern, regardless of their original speciation. The accompanying alterations in availability and solubility were partially due to interconversion between the different Hg redox states, including Hg(I). Simultaneously, partial transformation of added Hg{sup 2+} into volatile Hg compounds (35% in 10 d) was observed. Finally, Hg association with water-soluble ha continuously increased downstream, indicating that hs play a key role in both lateral and longitudinal Hg transport in the Elbe ecosystem.

  5. Factors affecting the measurement of mercury emissions from soils with flux chambers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    WallschläGer, Dirk; Turner, Ralph R.; London, Jacqueline; Ebinghaus, Ralf; Kock, Hans H.; Sommar, Jonas; Xiao, Zifan

    1999-09-01

    Air-surface exchange of mercury (Hg) above an arid geothermal area was measured with three parallel flux chamber experiments. The different experimental designs were intercompared with each other, with regard to the magnitude of the measured Hg fluxes and their response to environmental changes. Qualitatively, the measured Hg fluxes agreed well throughout the diurnal cycle, and in their response to environmental events and experimental manipulations, but quantitatively, there were significant discrepancies between the individual flux results. On average, the three designs yielded Hg fluxes agreeing within a factor of 2, but even more pronounced differences were observed during midday high emission periods and during apparent nighttime deposition events. The chamber flushing rate appears to have a very significant impact on the measured fluxes and on the response behavior to environmental change. This study demonstrates that both experimental differences and small-scale regional variability introduce large uncertainty in the estimation of natural Hg air-surface exchange by different flux chamber techniques. Also, the impact of environmental parameters on Hg air-surface exchange was studied. Rain events led to a strong increase in the Hg emissions, even when the covered soil remained dry, suggesting that the apparent chamber footprint is larger than the actually covered area. Exclusion of sunlight led to decreases in Hg emissions. Statistical analysis revealed the strongest correlations between the measured Hg fluxes and radiation and wind speed. Weaker correlations were observed with air and soil temperature and wind direction (probably due to local Hg sources). Fluxes were also inversely correlated with relative humidity.

  6. Atmospheric mercury emissions from mine wastes and surrounding geologically enriched terrains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gustin, M.S.; Coolbaugh, M.F.; Engle, M.A.; Fitzgerald, B.C.; Keislar, R.E.; Lindberg, S.E.; Nacht, D.M.; Quashnick, J.; Rytuba, J.J.; Sladek, C.; Zhang, H.; Zehner, R.E.

    2003-01-01

    Waste rock and ore associated with Hg, precious and base metal mining, and their surrounding host rocks are typically enriched in mercury relative to natural background concentrations (<0.1 ??g Hg g-1). Mercury fluxes to the atmosphere from mineralized areas can range from background rates (0-15 ng m-2 h-1) to tens of thousands of ng m-2 h-1. Mercury enriched substrate constitutes a long-term source of mercury to the global atmospheric mercury pool. Mercury emissions from substrate are influenced by light, temperature, precipitation, and substrate mercury concentration, and occur during the day and night. Light-enhanced emissions are driven by two processes: desorption of elemental mercury accumulated at the soil:air interface, and photo reduction of mercury containing phases. To determine the need for and effectiveness of regulatory controls on short-lived anthropogenic point sources the contribution of mercury from geologic non-point sources to the atmospheric mercury pool needs to be quantified. The atmospheric mercury contribution from small areas of mining disturbance with relatively high mercury concentrations are, in general, less than that from surrounding large areas of low levels of mercury enrichment. In the arid to semi-arid west-ern United States volatilization is the primary means by which mercury is released from enriched sites.

  7. Atmospheric mercury emissions from mine wastes and surrounding geologically enriched terrains

    SciTech Connect

    Gustin, Mae S.; Coolbaugh, M. F.; Engle, M. A.; Fitzgerald, B. C.; Keislar, R. E.; Lindberg, Steven Eric; Nacht, D. M.; Quashnick, J.; Rytuba, J. J.; Sladek, C.; Zhang, Hong; Zehner, R. E.

    2003-01-01

    Waste rock and ore associated with Hg, precious and base metal mining, and their surrounding host rocks are typically enriched in mercury relative to natural background concentrations (<0.1 {micro}g Hg g{sup -1}). Mercury fluxes to the atmosphere from mineralized areas can range from background rates (0-15 ng m{sup -2} h{sup -1}) to tens of thousands of ng m{sup -2} h{sup -1}. Mercury enriched substrate constitutes a long-term source of mercury to the global atmospheric mercury pool. Mercury emissions from substrate are influenced by light, temperature, precipitation, and substrate mercury concentration, and occur during the day and night. Light-enhanced emissions are driven by two processes: desorption of elemental mercury accumulated at the soil:air interface, and photo reduction of mercury containing phases. To determine the need for and effectiveness of regulatory controls on short-lived anthropogenic point sources the contribution of mercury from geologic non-point sources to the atmospheric mercury pool needs to be quantified. The atmospheric mercury contribution from small areas of mining disturbance with relatively high mercury concentrations are, in general, less than that from surrounding large areas of low levels of mercury enrichment. In the arid to semi-arid western United States volatilization is the primary means by which mercury is released from enriched sites.

  8. MERGANSER- Predicting Mercury Levels in Fish and Loons in New England Lakes

    EPA Science Inventory

    MERGANSER (MERcury Geo-spatial AssesmentS for the New England Region) is an empirical least squares multiple regression model using atmospheric deposition of mercury (Hg) and readily obtainable lake and watershed features to predict fish and common loon Hg (as methyl mercury) in ...

  9. Mercury distribution across 14 U.S. Forests. Part I: spatial patterns of concentrations in biomass, litter, and soils.

    PubMed

    Obrist, D; Johnson, D W; Lindberg, S E; Luo, Y; Hararuk, O; Bracho, R; Battles, J J; Dail, D B; Edmonds, R L; Monson, R K; Ollinger, S V; Pallardy, S G; Pregitzer, K S; Todd, D E

    2011-05-01

    Results from a systematic investigation of mercury (Hg) concentrations across 14 forest sites in the United States show highest concentrations in litter layers, strongly enriched in Hg compared to aboveground tissues and indicative of substantial postdepositional sorption of Hg. Soil Hg concentrations were lower than in litter, with highest concentrations in surface soils. Aboveground tissues showed no detectable spatial patterns, likely due to 17 different tree species present across sites. Litter and soil Hg concentrations positively correlated with carbon (C), latitude, precipitation, and clay (in soil), which together explained up to 94% of concentration variability. We observed strong latitudinal increases in Hg in soils and litter, in contrast to inverse latitudinal gradients of atmospheric deposition measures. Soil and litter Hg concentrations were closely linked to C contents, consistent with well-known associations between organic matter and Hg, and we propose that C also shapes distribution of Hg in forests at continental scales. The consistent link between C and Hg distribution may reflect a long-term legacy whereby old, C-rich soil and litter layers sequester atmospheric Hg depositions over long time periods. Based on a multiregression model, we present a distribution map of Hg concentrations in surface soils of the United States. PMID:21473582

  10. A new, catchment-scale model for simulating methyl and total mercury in soils and surface waters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Futter, M. N.; Poste, A. E.; Whitehead, P. G.; Dillon, P. J.

    2012-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a potent and persistent neurotoxin. It is subject to long-range atmospheric transport, accumulates in catchment soils, and can pose health risks to humans and animals both at the point of use as well as in remote locations. Elevated concentrations of methyl mercury (MeHg) in fish are related to atmospheric Hg deposition and have resulted in fish consumption advisories in many parts of North America and Fennoscandia. After more than 150 years of elevated Hg deposition in Europe and North America, there remains a large inventory of Hg in the terrestrial catchments of lakes, which continues to be exported to receiving waters despite decreasing atmospheric inputs. While a substantial Hg pool exists in boreal catchment soils, fluxes of Hg from catchments via stream runoff tend to be much lower than atmospheric Hg inputs. Terrestrial catchments receiving similar atmospheric Hg inputs can have markedly different patterns of Hg output in stream water. Considering the importance of catchment processes in determining Hg flux to lakes and subsequent MeHg concentrations in fish, there is a need to characterize Hg cycling and transport in boreal and temperate forest-covered catchments. We present a new, catchment-scale, process-based dynamic model for simulating Hg in soils and surface waters. The Integrated Catchments Model for Mercury (INCA-Hg) simulates transport of gaseous, dissolved and solid Hg and transformations between elemental (Hg0), ionic (Hg(II)) and MeHg in natural and semi-natural landscapes. The mathematical description represents the model as a series of linked, first-order differential equations describing chemical and hydrological processes in catchment soils and waters which control surface water Hg dynamics and subsequent fluxes to lakes and other receiving waters. The model simulates daily time series between one and one hundred years long and can be applied to catchments ranging in size from <1 to ~10000 km2. Here we present applications

  11. Levels of total mercury in marine organisms from Adriatic Sea, Italy.

    PubMed

    Perugini, Monia; Visciano, Pierina; Manera, Maurizio; Zaccaroni, Annalisa; Olivieri, Vincenzo; Amorena, Michele

    2009-08-01

    The presence of total mercury in fish, crustacean and cephalopod from Adriatic Sea, was investigated. The highest concentrations were observed in decreasing order in: Norway lobster (0.97 +/- 0.24 mg/kg; mean +/- SE), European hake (0.59 +/- 0.14 mg/kg), red mullet (0.48 +/- 0.09 mg/kg), blue whiting (0.38 +/- 0.09 mg/kg), Atlantic mackerel (0.36 +/- 0.08 mg/kg) and European flying squid (0.25 +/- 0.03 mg/kg). A significant difference (p < 0.01) was found between the levels of total mercury in Norway lobster and those detected in all other species. The 25% of all samples exceeded the maximum limit fixed by Commission Regulation (EC) No 1881/2006. The results show that fish and fishery products can exceed the maximum levels and stress the need of more information for consumers in particular for people that eat large amount of fish. PMID:19434348

  12. Levels of total mercury in predatory fish sold in Canada in 2005.

    PubMed

    Dabeka, R W; McKenzie, A D; Forsyth, D S

    2011-06-01

    Total mercury was analysed in 188 samples of predatory fish purchased at the retail level in Canada in 2005. The average concentrations (ng g(-1), range) were: sea bass 329 (38-1367), red snapper 148 (36-431), orange roughy 543 (279-974), fresh water trout 55 (20-430), grouper 360 (8-1060), black cod 284 (71-651), Arctic char 37 (28-54), king fish 440 (42-923), tilefish 601 (79-1164) and marlin 854 (125-2346). The Canadian standard for maximum total mercury allowed in the edible portions of fish sold at the retail level is 1000 ng g(-1) for shark, swordfish, marlin, orange roughy, escolar and both fresh and frozen tuna. The standard is 500 ng g(-1) for all other types of fish. In this study, despite the small number of samples of each species, the 1000 ng g(-1) maximum was exceeded in five samples of marlin (28%). The 500 ng g(-1) maximum was exceeded by six samples of sea bass (20%), four of tilefish (50%), five of grouper (24%), six of king fish (40%) and one of black cod (13%). PMID:21623497

  13. Mercury in municipal solid wastes and New Jersey mercury prevention and reduction program

    SciTech Connect

    Erdogan, H.; Stevenson, E.

    1994-12-31

    Mercury is a very toxic heavy metal which accumulates in the brain causing neurological damages involving psychasthenic and vegetative syndrome. At high exposure levels it causes behavioral and personality changes, loss of memory and insomnia. Long-term exposure or exposure during pregnancy to mercury or mercury compounds can permanently damage the kidney and fetus. In addition to potential effects on human health, mercury poisoning can also affect other living organisms. Mercury is different than other heavy metals. It consistently biomagnifies and bioaccumulates within the aquatic food chain. Global sources of mercury release are both natural and anthropogenic. Natural sources include volatilization of gaseous-mercury iron soils ana rocks, volcanic releases, evaporation from the ocean and other water bodies. Anthropogenic sources are fuel and coal combustion, mining, smelting, manufacturing activities, disposal of sludge, pesticides, animal and food waste, and incineration of municipal solid waste. Worldwide combustion of municipal solid waste is the second largest source of atmospheric emission of mercury. In New Jersey, incineration of solid waste is the largest source of atmospheric emission of mercury. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Energy (NJDEPE) has developed a comprehensive program to control and prevent emission of mercury resulting from combustion municipal solid waste.

  14. LOCATIONAL DIFFERENCES IN MERCURY AND SELENIUM LEVELS IN 19 SPECIES OF SALTWATER FISH FROM NEW JERSEY

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Jeitner, Christian; Gochfeld, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Individuals who fish, and their families that ingest self-caught fish, make decisions about where to fish, what type of fish to eat, and the quantity of fish to eat. While federal and state agencies often issue consumption advisories for some fish with high mercury (Hg) concentrations, advisories seldom provide the actual metal levels to the general public. There are few data for most saltwater fish, and even less information on variations in Hg levels in fish within a state or geographical region. The objective of this study was to provide Hg concentrations from 19 species of fish caught in different locations in New Jersey to (1) test the hypothesis that mean metal levels vary geographically, (2) provide this information to individuals who fish these coastal waters, and (3) provide a range of values for risk assessors who deal with saltwater fish exposure in the Northeastern United States. Selenium (Se) was also examined because of its purported moderating effect on the toxicity of Hg. Hg levels showed significant geographical variation for 10 of 14 species that were caught in more than one region of New Jersey, but there were significant locational differences for Se in only 5 of the fish. Mercury levels were significantly lower in fish collected from northern New Jersey (except for ling, Molva molva), compared to other regions. As might be expected, locational differences in Hg levels were greatest for fish species with the highest Hg concentrations (shark, Isurus oxyrinchus; tuna, Thunnus thynnus and T. albacares; striped bass, Morone saxatilis; bluefish, Pomatomus saltatrix). Fishers and their families might reduce their risk from Hg exposure not only by selecting fish generally lower in Hg, but by fishing predominantly in some regions over others, further lowering the potential risk. Health professionals might use these data to advise patients on which fish are safest to consume (in terms of Hg exposure) from particular geographical regions. PMID:21598171

  15. Locational differences in mercury and selenium levels in 19 species of saltwater fish from New Jersey.

    PubMed

    Burger, Joanna; Jeitner, Christian; Gochfeld, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Individuals who fish, and their families that ingest self-caught fish, make decisions about where to fish, what type of fish to eat, and the quantity of fish to eat. While federal and state agencies often issue consumption advisories for some fish with high mercury (Hg) concentrations, advisories seldom provide the actual metal levels to the general public. There are few data for most saltwater fish, and even less information on variations in Hg levels in fish within a state or geographical region. The objective of this study was to provide Hg concentrations from 19 species of fish caught in different locations in New Jersey to (1) test the hypothesis that mean metal levels vary geographically, (2) provide this information to individuals who fish these coastal waters, and (3) provide a range of values for risk assessors who deal with saltwater fish exposure in the Northeastern United States. Selenium (Se) was also examined because of its purported moderating effect on the toxicity of Hg. Hg levels showed significant geographical variation for 10 of 14 species that were caught in more than one region of New Jersey, but there were significant locational differences for Se in only 5 of the fish. Mercury levels were significantly lower in fish collected from northern New Jersey (except for ling, Molva molva), compared to other regions. As might be expected, locational differences in Hg levels were greatest for fish species with the highest Hg concentrations (shark, Isurus oxyrinchus; tuna, Thunnus thynnus and T. albacares; striped bass, Morone saxatilis; bluefish, Pomatomus saltatrix). Fishers and their families might reduce their risk from Hg exposure not only by selecting fish generally lower in Hg, but by fishing predominantly in some regions over others, further lowering the potential risk. Health professionals might use these data to advise patients on which fish are safest to consume (in terms of Hg exposure) from particular geographical regions. PMID:21598171

  16. 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.; Li, Wei-Gang

    1995-01-01

    The project has evolved to that of using Green's functions to predict properties of deep defects in narrow gap materials. Deep defects are now defined as originating from short range potentials and are often located near the middle of the energy gap. They are important because they affect the lifetime of charge carriers and hence the switching time of transistors. We are now moving into the arena of predicting formation energies of deep defects. This will also allow us to make predictions about the relative concentrations of the defects that could be expected at a given temperature. The narrow gap materials mercury cadmium telluride (MCT), mercury zinc telluride (MZT), and mercury zinc selenide (MZS) are of interest to NASA because they have commercial value for infrared detecting materials, and because there is a good possibility that they can be grown better in a microgravity environment. The uniform growth of these crystals on earth is difficult because of convection (caused by solute depletion just ahead of the growing interface, and also due to thermal gradients). In general it is very difficult to grow crystals with both radial and axial homogeneity.

  17. 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 Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patterson, James D.; Li, Wei-Gang

    1995-03-01

    The project has evolved to that of using Green's functions to predict properties of deep defects in narrow gap materials. Deep defects are now defined as originating from short range potentials and are often located near the middle of the energy gap. They are important because they affect the lifetime of charge carriers and hence the switching time of transistors. We are now moving into the arena of predicting formation energies of deep defects. This will also allow us to make predictions about the relative concentrations of the defects that could be expected at a given temperature. The narrow gap materials mercury cadmium telluride (MCT), mercury zinc telluride (MZT), and mercury zinc selenide (MZS) are of interest to NASA because they have commercial value for infrared detecting materials, and because there is a good possibility that they can be grown better in a microgravity environment. The uniform growth of these crystals on earth is difficult because of convection (caused by solute depletion just ahead of the growing interface, and also due to thermal gradients). In general it is very difficult to grow crystals with both radial and axial homogeneity.

  18. Mercury in ground water, septage, leach-field effluent, and soils in residential areas, New Jersey coastal plain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barringer, J.L.; Szabo, Z.; Schneider, D.; Atkinson, W.D.; Gallagher, R.A.

    2006-01-01

    Water samples were collected from domestic wells at an unsewered residential area in Gloucester County, New Jersey where mercury (Hg) concentrations in well water were known to exceed the USEPA maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 2000 ng/L. This residential area (the CSL site) is representative of more than 70 such areas in southern New Jersey where about 600 domestic wells, sampled previously by State and county agencies, yielded water containing Hg at concentrations that exceed the MCL. Recent studies indicate that background concentrations of Hg in water from this unconfined sand and gravel aquifer system are < 10 ng/L. Additional sampling was conducted at the CSL site in order to better understand sources of Hg and potential Hg transport mechanisms in the areas with Hg-contaminated ground water. At the CSL site, concentrations of Hg were substantially lower (although still exceeding the MCL in some cases) in filtered water samples than in the unfiltered water samples collected previously from the same wells. Surfactants and elevated concentrations of sodium, chloride, nitrate, ammonium, and phosphate in water from domestic and observation wells indicated septic-system effects on water quality; detections of sulfide indicated localized reducing conditions. Hg concentrations in septage and leach-field effluent sampled at several other households in the region were low relative to the contaminant-level Hg concentrations in water from domestic wells. Relations of Hg concentrations in leach-field effluent to iron concentrations indicate that reductive dissolution of iron hydroxides in soils may release Hg to the percolating effluent. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Determination of the potential for release of mercury from combustion product amended soils: Part 2 - Coal fly ash generated stabilized soil and degradation products

    SciTech Connect

    Mae Sexauer Gustin; Mei Xin; Jody Ericksen; George C. Fernandez

    2008-11-15

    The potential for mercury (Hg) releases to the air and water from three soils, two subbituminous coal fly ashes, and mixtures of these materials as stabilized soil was assessed. In addition, the potential for Hg release from crushed stabilized material mixed into soil simulating degradation over time was investigated. In general, atmospheric Hg deposition was measured for the ash and materials made using the ash with the higher Hg concentration, whereas the second ash material and materials generated using this ash exhibited emission as the dominant flux. Fluxes measured from stabilized material were less than that measured for the pure ash material but of the same direction. Although the stabilized and degraded stabilized materials exhibited Hg fluxes that were significantly different from base soils, values were within the range reported for low Hg-containing background soils. Because of limitations of the experimental design (i.e., reduced light exposures and measurement of flux from dry materials) reported fluxes are most likely underestimates of that which would occur in the natural environment. Materials made to simulate degradation of the stabilized material did not exhibit higher releases than the stabilized material alone. Synthetic Precipitation Leaching Procedure (SPLP; EPA method 1312) results showed that the chemistry of a soil, especially pH, may influence the amount of Hg released to soil solutions, with more acidic soils potentially enhancing Hg release. 25 refs., 9 figs., 4 tabs.

  20. Determination of the potential for release of mercury from combustion product amended soils: part 2--coal fly ash generated stabilized soil and degradation products.

    PubMed

    Gustin, Mae Sexauer; Xin, Mei; Ericksen, Jody; Fernandez, George C

    2008-11-01

    The potential for mercury (Hg) releases to the air and water from three soils, two subbituminous coal fly ashes, and mixtures of these materials as stabilized soil was assessed. In addition, the potential for Hg release from crushed stabilized material mixed into soil simulating degradation over time was investigated. In general, atmospheric Hg deposition was measured for the ash and materials made using the ash with the higher Hg concentration (ash 1, 0.25 microg x g(-1)), whereas the second ash material (ash 2; approximately 0.08 microg x g(-1)) and materials generated using this ash exhibited emission as the dominant flux. Fluxes measured from stabilized material were less than that measured for the pure ash material but of the same direction. Although the stabilized and degraded stabilized materials exhibited Hg fluxes that were significantly different from base soils, values were within the range reported for low Hg-containing background soils. Because of limitations of the experimental design (i.e., reduced light exposures and measurement of flux from dry materials) reported fluxes are most likely underestimates of that which would occur in the natural environment. Materials made to simulate degradation of the stabilized material did not exhibit higher releases than the stabilized material alone. Synthetic Precipitation Leaching Procedure (SPLP; EPA method 1312) results showed that the chemistry of a soil, especially pH, may influence the amount of Hg released to soil solutions, with more acidic soils potentially enhancing Hg release. PMID:19044165

  1. When are fetuses and young children most susceptible to soil metal concentrations of arsenic, lead and mercury?

    PubMed Central

    McDermott, Suzanne; Bao, Weichao; Aelion, C. Marjorie; Cai, Bo; Lawson, Andrew

    2012-01-01

    This study was designed to analyze when, during pregnancy and early childhood, the association between soil metal concentrations of arsenic (As), lead (Pb) and mercury (Hg) and the outcome of intellectual disability (ID) is statistically significant. Using cluster analysis, we identified ten areas of land that contained a cluster of ID and areas of average risk for ID. We analyzed soil for As, Pb, and Hg and estimated the soil metal concentration at the residential sites where the woman and children lived during pregnancy and early childhood using a Bayesian Kriging model. Arsenic concentrations were associated with ID during the first trimester of pregnancy and Hg was associated with ID early in pregnancy and the first two years of childhood. The covariates that remained in the final models were also temporally associated with ID. PMID:22749212

  2. Determination of the potential for release of mercury from combustion product amended soils: Part 1--Simulations of beneficial use.

    PubMed

    Gustin, Mae Sexauer; Ericksen, Jody; Fernandez, George C

    2008-05-01

    This paper describes a project that assessed the potential for mercury (Hg) release to air and water from soil amended with combustion products to simulate beneficial use. Combustion products (ash) derived from wood, sewage sludge, subbituminous coal, and a subbituminous coal-petroleum coke mixture were added to soil as agricultural supplements, soil stabilizers, and to develop low-permeability surfaces. Hg release was measured from the latter when intact and after it was broken up and mixed into the soil. Air-substrate Hg exchange was measured for all materials six times over 24 hr, providing data that reflected winter, spring, summer, and fall meteorological conditions. Dry deposition of atmospheric Hg and emission of Hg to the atmosphere were both found to be important fluxes. Measured differences in seasonal and diel (24 hr) fluxes demonstrated that to establish an annual estimate of air-substrate flux from these materials data on both of these time steps should be collected. Air-substrate exchange was highly correlated with soil and air temperature, as well as incident light. Hg releases to the atmosphere from coal and wood combustion product-amended soils to simulate an agricultural application were similar to that measured for the unamended soil, whereas releases to the air for the sludge-amended materials were higher. Hg released to soil solutions during the Synthetic Precipitation Leaching Procedure for ash-amended materials was higher than that released from soil alone. On the basis of estimates of annual releases of Hg to the air from the materials used, emissions from coal and wood ash-amended soil to simulate an agricultural application could simply be re-emission of Hg deposited by wet processes from the atmosphere; however, releases from sludge-amended materials and those generated to simulate soil stabilization and disturbed low-permeability pads include Hg indigenous to the material. PMID:18512444

  3. Determination of the potential for release of mercury from combustion product amended soils: Part 1 - Simulations of beneficial use

    SciTech Connect

    Mae Sexauer Gustin; Jody Ericksen; George C. Fernandez

    2008-05-15

    This paper describes a project that assessed the potential for mercury (Hg) release to air and water from soil amended with combustion products to simulate beneficial use. Combustion products (ash) derived from wood, sewage sludge, subbituminous coal, and a subbituminous coal-petroleum coke mixture were added to soil as agricultural supplements, soil stabilizers, and to develop low permeability surfaces. Hg release was measured from the latter when intact and after it was broken up and mixed into the soil. Air-substrate Hg exchange was measured for all materials six times over 24 hr, providing data that reflected winter, spring, summer, and fall meteorological conditions. Dry deposition of atmospheric Hg and emission of Hg to the atmosphere were both found to be important fluxes. Measured differences in seasonal and diel (24 hr) fluxes demonstrated that to establish an annual estimate of air-substrate flux from these materials data on both of these time steps should be collected. Air-substrate exchange was highly correlated with soil and air temperature, as well as incident light. Hg releases to the atmosphere from coal and wood combustion product-amended soils to simulate an agricultural application were similar to that measured for the unamended soil, whereas releases to the air for the sludge-amended materials were higher. Hg released to soil solutions during the Synthetic Precipitation Leaching Procedure for ashamended materials was higher than that released from soil alone. On the basis of estimates of annual releases of Hg to the air from the materials used, emissions from coal and wood ash-amended soil to simulate an agricultural application could simply be re-emission of Hg deposited by wet processes from the atmosphere; however, releases from sludge-amended materials and those generated to simulate soil stabilization and disturbed low-permeability pads include Hg indigenous to the material. 37 refs., 5 figs., 4 tabs.

  4. Elevated mercury concentrations in soils, sediments, water, and fish of the Madeira River basin, Brazilian Amazon: a function of natural enrichments?

    PubMed

    Lechler, P J; Miller, J R; Lacerda, L D; Vinson, D; Bonzongo, J C; Lyons, W B; Warwick, J J

    2000-10-01

    Previous site-specific investigations have found that mercury concentrations in water, sediments, and biota of the Brazilian Amazon are elevated above global averages, and that these concentrations are a direct result of widespread mercury amalgamation mining operations conducted by non-organized prospectors. In order to assess the regional impacts of Hg contamination from these non-organized gold mining activities, water, sediments, and fish were systematically collected in 1997 along a 900-km reach of the Madeira River. The sampling program extended from the Amazon River upstream to Porto Velho, the site of historic and ongoing mercury amalgamation mining. Mercury concentrations were found to be elevated above global averages in all sampled media. However, the geochemical data suggest that the high mercury levels are due largely to natural sources and natural biogeochemical processes, and that the impacts of anthropogenically released mercury from mine sites is relatively localized. PMID:11032118

  5. Fate and transport of mercury in soil systems : a numerical model in HP1 and sensitivity analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leterme, Bertrand; Jacques, Diederik

    2013-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) poses threats for human health and the environment, notably due to its persistence and its ability to bioaccumulate in ecosystems. Anthropogenic activities are major contributors of mercury release to soils. Main sources of contamination include manufacturing (chlor-alkali plants, manometer spill), mine tailings from mercury, gold and silver mining industries, wood preservation. The objective of this study was to develop a reactive transport model for simulating mercury fate and transport in the unsaturated zone, and to gain insight in the fate and transport of Hg following anthropogenic soil contamination. The present work is done in the framework of the IMaHg project, which aims at providing recommendations to improve management of sites contaminated by mercury within the SNOWMAN funding framework. A model of mercury fate and transport in soil systems was developed using the reactive transport code HP1 (Jacques and Šimůnek, 2010). The geochemical database THERMODDEM (Blanc et al., 2012) is used, augmented with some speciation data from (Skyllberg, 2012). The main processes accounted for in the model are : Hg aqueous speciation (including complexation with dissolved organic matter (DOM) - humic and fulvic acids, and thiol groups), Hg sorption to solid organic matter (SOM), dissolution of solid phase Hg (e.g. cinnabar HgS(s)), dissolution of Hg non-aqueous liquid phase (NAPL), sunlight-driven Hg(II) reduction to Hg(0), Hg(0) diffusion in the gas phase and volatilization, DOM sorption to soil minerals. Colloid facilitated transport is implicitly accounted for by solute transport of Hg-DOM complexes. Because we focused on soil systems having a high Hg contamination, some processes showing relatively smaller Hg fluxes could be neglected such as vegetation uptake and atmospheric wet and dry deposition. NAPL migration and entrapment is not modelled, as pollution is assumed to be historical and only residual NAPL to be present. Mercury methylation and

  6. Successful Characterization and Remedial Contour of Highly Contaminated Mercury Soil at the Y-12 National Security Complex - 13593

    SciTech Connect

    White, Aaron; Rigas, Michael; Birchfield, Joseph W. III

    2013-07-01

    An area known as the 81-10 pad within the footprint of the Y-12 National Security Complex, suspected to be heavily contaminated with mercury, was slated for characterization in support of a Federal Facilities Agreement (FFA) milestone to be accomplished by September 30, 2012. A full remedial design report (RDR) required the soil in Exposure Unit -9 (EU-9) to be fully characterized for a number of contaminates of concern including mercury. The goal of this characterization effort was to determine what soil, if any, would need to be removed for the protection of industrial workers and impacts to the surface and ground water. Funding for this project was made available using buy-back scope under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The EU-9 soil unit involved 3 different classifications which were determined as follows: Class 1: Known to have been impacted, contamination is likely; Class 2: Suspected to have been impacted, contamination is unknown; Class 3: Area not known to have been impacted, contamination unlikely. Due to various sampling and analysis events since the 1980's, significant mercury contamination was expected under the concrete pad of an area known as 81-10. Mercury contamination outside of the boundary of this pad within the EU-9 footprint was not known and therefore an original planned estimate of 1,461 cubic meters of material were expected to be heavily contaminated with mercury requiring removal, treatment and disposal. Through the use of a highly effective nature and extent sampling and analysis design that involved a hybrid of statistically-based and judgmental sampling, the actual remedial contour requiring removal was approximately 717 cubic meters, roughly 12% of the original estimate. This characterization approach was executed in full compliance with the Record of Decision (ROD) [1] documents that were agreed upon by the U.S. Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency and Tennessee Department of Environment and

  7. Arsenic and mercury in the soils of an industrial city in the Donets Basin, Ukraine

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conko, Kathryn M.; Landa, Edward R.; Kolker, Allan; Kozlov, Kostiantyn; Gibb, Herman J.; Centeno, Jose; Panov, Boris S.; Panov, Yuri B.

    2013-01-01

    Soil and house dust collected in and around Hg mines and a processing facility in Horlivka, a mid-sized city in the Donets Basin of southeastern Ukraine, have elevated As and Hg levels. Surface soils collected at a former Hg-processing facility had up to 1300 mg kg−1 As and 8800 mg kg−1 Hg; 1M HCl extractions showed 74–93% of the total As, and 1–13% of the total Hg to be solubilized, suggesting differential environmental mobility between these elements. In general, lower extractability of As and Hg was seen in soil samples up to 12 km from the Hg-processing facility, and the extractable (1M HCl, synthetic precipitation, deionized water) fractions of As are greater than those for Hg, indicating that Hg is present in a more resistant form than As. The means (standard deviation) of total As and Hg in grab samples collected from playgrounds and public spaces within 12 km of the industrial facility were 64 (±38) mg kg−1 As and 12 (±9.4) mg kg−1 Hg; all concentrations are elevated compared to regional soils. The mean concentrations of As and Hg in dust from homes in Horlivka were 5–15 times higher than dust from homes in a control city. Estimates of possible exposure to As and Hg through inadvertent soil ingestion are provided.

  8. Mercury bio-extraction by fungus Coprinus comatus: a possible bioindicator and mycoremediator of polluted soils?

    PubMed

    Falandysz, Jerzy

    2016-04-01

    The Shaggy Ink Cap (Coprinus comatus), which is a common in wild in northern hemisphere was examined in field for potential to be used as possible bio-extractor of Hg from polluted grounds but also as possible bioindicator of urban soils (roadside, barren lands, lawns) pollution with Hg. The contents of Hg in caps and stipes of C. comatus from the grounds examined in this study correlated positively with the levels of soil contamination. Analysis of sets of data available worldwide on Hg in C. comatus and soils beneath-fruiting bodies showed on a positive correlation between degree of soil and mushroom contamination. Hence, C. comatus could be considered as a sensitive species and with bioindication and bioremediation potency for soils polluted with Hg in further studies. Young-fruiting bodies of C. comatus are edible and considered excellent if consumed soon after pick-up. Eating them when foraged from the urban places can provide to a consumer Hg at relatively high dose, while unresolved question is absorption rate of Hg compounds contained in ingested mushroom meal. PMID:26705753

  9. Mercury in soil near a long-term air emission source in southeastern Idaho

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Abbott, M.L.; Susong, D.D.; Olson, M.; Krabbenhoft, D.P.

    2003-01-01

    At the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory in southeastern Idaho, a 500??C fluidized bed calciner was intermittently operated for 37 years, with measured Hg emission rates of 9-11 g/h. Surface soil was sampled at 57 locations around the facility to determine the spatial distribution of Hg fallout and surface Hg variability, and to predict the total residual Hg mass in the soil from historical emissions. Measured soil concentrations were slightly higher (p<0.05) within 5 km of the source but were overall very low (15-20 ng/g) compared to background Hg levels published for similar soils in the USA (50-70 ng/g). Concentrations decreased 4%/cm with depth and were found to be twice as high under shrubs and in depressions. Mass balance calculations accounted for only 2.5-20% of the estimated total Hg emitted over the 37-year calciner operating history. These results suggest that much of the Hg deposited from calciner operations may have been reduced in the soil and re-emitted as Hg(0) to the global atmospheric pool.

  10. The influence of sample drying procedures on mercury concentrations analyzed in soils.

    PubMed

    Hojdová, Maria; Rohovec, Jan; Chrastný, Vladislav; Penížek, Vít; Navrátil, Tomáš

    2015-05-01

    Methods commonly used for soil sample preparation may be unsuitable for measuring Hg concentrations due to the possible loss of volatile Hg species when drying at higher temperatures. Here, the effects of freeze-drying, air drying at 25°C and oven-drying at 105°C on Hg concentrations in two soil types and three standard reference materials were tested. Two soils with different levels of Hg contamination and three reference materials were examined. A systematic decrease of Hg concentrations was observed in air-dried (24 %) and oven-dried (3 %) contaminated upland soils in comparison to freeze-dried control samples. The 105°C oven drying also led to loss of Hg from reference materials (5 %-8 % in comparison with the certified Hg concentration). Different results from the drying of sterilized reference materials and natural soils were probably related to the extent of microbiological activity, demonstrating the importance of this parameter in sample preparation for Hg analysis. PMID:25786366

  11. Can mercury in fish be reduced by water level management? Evaluating the effects of water level fluctuation on mercury accumulation in yellow perch (Perca flavescens)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larson, James H.; Maki, Ryan P.; Knights, Brent C.; Gray, Brian R.

    2014-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination of fisheries is a major concern for resource managers of many temperate lakes. Anthropogenic Hg contamination is largely derived from atmospheric deposition within a lake’s watershed, but its incorporation into the food web is facilitated by bacterial activity in sediments. Temporal variation in Hg content of fish (young-of-year yellow perch) in the regulated lakes of the Rainy–Namakan complex (on the border of the United States and Canada) has been linked to water level (WL) fluctuations, presumably through variation in sediment inundation. As a result, Hg contamination of fish has been linked to international regulations of WL fluctuation. Here we assess the relationship between WL fluctuations and fish Hg content using a 10-year dataset covering six lakes. Within-year WL rise did not appear in strongly supported models of fish Hg, but year-to-year variation in maximum water levels (∆maxWL) was positively associated with fish Hg content. This WL effect varied in magnitude among lakes: In Crane Lake, a 1 m increase in ∆maxWL from the previous year was associated with a 108 ng increase in fish Hg content (per gram wet weight), while the same WL change in Kabetogama was associated with only a 5 ng increase in fish Hg content. In half the lakes sampled here, effect sizes could not be distinguished from zero. Given the persistent and wide-ranging extent of Hg contamination and the large number of regulated waterways, future research is needed to identify the conditions in which WL fluctuations influence fish Hg content.

  12. Mercury retorting of calcine waste, contaminated soils and railroad ballast at the Idaho National Egineering Laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Cotten, G.B.; Rothermel, J.S.; Sherwood, J.; Heath, S.A.; Lo, T.Y.R.

    1996-02-28

    The Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) has been involved in nuclear reactor research and development for over 40 years. One of the earliest major projects involved the development of a nuclear powered aircraft engine, a long-term venture which used mercury as a shielding medium. Over the course of several years, a significant amount of mercury was spilled along the railroad tracks where the test engines were transported and stored. In addition, experiments with volume reduction of waste through a calcine process employing mercury as a catalyst resulted in mercury contaminated calcine waste. Both the calcine and Test Area North wastes have been identified in Department of Energy Action Memorandums to be retorted, thereby separating the mercury from the various contaminated media. Lockheed Idaho Technologies Company awarded the Mercury Retort contract to ETAS Corporation and assigned Parsons Engineering Science, Inc. to manage the treatment field activities. The mercury retort process entails a mobile unit which consists of four trailer-mounted subsystems requiring electricity, propane, and a water supply. This mobile system demonstrates an effective strategy for retorting waste and generating minimal secondary waste.

  13. Check on level of environmental contamination by mercury and cleanup of Abetina Mining area (Grosseto-Italia)

    SciTech Connect

    Belardi, G.; Marabini, A.M.; Passariello, B.

    1996-12-31

    The purpose of the study was to check on the level of environmental contamination and to design a project for cleaning up the Abetina Mine area at Piancastagnaio (Grosseto, Italy). Contamination of this area had occurred during the mining and treatment of cinnabar (HgS) over a prolonged period. The aim of the project is to remove the sources of contamination or render them harmless. Mining of the Piancastagnaio deposit started in 1840, mercury metal being extracted from the ore by thermal treatment. Together with Spain, Italy was the first country to produce this metal and was the world leader in this field between 1936 and 1943. Though mercury production in the Monte Amiata region of Tuscany ceased in 1974 the ensuing environmental impact is very evident, taking the form of rusty old mining and processing works, plus waste tips which still contain considerable amount of mercury even after the ore had been subject to thermal extraction treatment. The research which has been conducted included mapping the area to identify the main sources of mercury and arsenic pollution, as well as the level of environmental contamination. Mercury and arsenic values in excess of 16,000 and 150 ppm respectively are encountered in the most highly-contaminated places. 11 refs., 6 figs., 2 tabs.

  14. Seasonal, locational and size variations in mercury and selenium levels in striped bass (Morone saxatilis) from New Jersey

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    We examined total mercury and selenium levels in muscle of striped bass (Morone saxatilis) collected from 2005 to 2008 from coastal New Jersey. Of primary interest was whether there were differences in mercury and selenium levels as a function of size and location, and whether the legal size limits increased the exposure of bass consumers to mercury. We obtained samples mainly from recreational anglers, but also by seine and trawl. For the entire sample (n = 178 individual fish), the mean (± standard error) for total mercury was 0.39 ± 0.02 μg/g (= 0.39 ppm, wet weight basis) with a maximum of 1.3 μg/g (= 1.3 ppm wet weight). Mean selenium level was 0.30 ± 0.01 μg/g (w/w) with a maximum of 0.9 μg/g). Angler-caught fish (n = 122) were constrained by legal size limits to exceed 61 cm (24 in.) and averaged 72.6 ± 1.3 cm long; total mercury averaged 0.48 ± 0.021 μg/g and selenium averaged 0.29 ± 0.01 μg/g. For comparable sizes, angler-caught fish had significantly higher mercury levels (0.3 vs 0.21 μg/g) than trawled fish. In both the total and angler-only samples, mercury was strongly correlated with length (Kendall tau = 0.37; p < 0.0001) and weight (0.38; p < 0.0001), but was not correlated with condition or with selenium. In the whole sample and all subsamples, total length yielded the highest r2 (up to 0.42) of any variable for both mercury and selenium concentrations. Trawled fish from Long Branch in August and Sandy Hook in October were the same size (68.9 vs 70.1 cm) and had the same mercury concentrations (0.22 vs 0.21 ppm), but different selenium levels (0.11 vs 0.28 ppm). The seined fish (all from Delaware Bay) had the same mercury concentration as the trawled fish from the Atlantic coast despite being smaller. Angler-caught fish from the North (Sandy Hook) were larger but had significantly lower mercury than fish from the South (mainly Cape May). Selenium levels were high in small fish, low in medium-sized fish, and increased again in larger

  15. Seasonal, locational and size variations in mercury and selenium levels in striped bass (Morone saxatilis) from New Jersey.

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

    We examined total mercury and selenium levels in muscle of striped bass (Morone saxatilis) collected from 2005 to 2008 from coastal New Jersey. Of primary interest was whether there were differences in mercury and selenium levels as a function of size and location, and whether the legal size limits increased the exposure of bass consumers to mercury. We obtained samples mainly from recreational anglers, but also by seine and trawl. For the entire sample (n=178 individual fish), the mean (±standard error) for total mercury was 0.39±0.02 μg/g (=0.39 ppm, wet weight basis) with a maximum of 1.3 μg/g (=1.3 ppm wet weight). Mean selenium level was 0.30±0.01 μg/g (w/w) with a maximum of 0.9 μg/g). Angler-caught fish (n=122) were constrained by legal size limits to exceed 61 cm (24 in.) and averaged 72.6±1.3 cm long; total mercury averaged 0.48±0.021 μg/g and selenium averaged 0.29±0.01 μg/g. For comparable sizes, angler-caught fish had significantly higher mercury levels (0.3 vs 0.21 μg/g) than trawled fish. In both the total and angler-only samples, mercury was strongly correlated with length (Kendall tau=0.37; p<0.0001) and weight (0.38; p<0.0001), but was not correlated with condition or with selenium. In the whole sample and all subsamples, total length yielded the highest r(2) (up to 0.42) of any variable for both mercury and selenium concentrations. Trawled fish from Long Branch in August and Sandy Hook in October were the same size (68.9 vs 70.1cm) and had the same mercury concentrations (0.22 vs 0.21 ppm), but different selenium levels (0.11 vs 0.28 ppm). The seined fish (all from Delaware Bay) had the same mercury concentration as the trawled fish from the Atlantic coast despite being smaller. Angler-caught fish from the North (Sandy Hook) were larger but had significantly lower mercury than fish from the South (mainly Cape May). Selenium levels were high in small fish, low in medium-sized fish, and increased again in larger fish, but overall

  16. Using native epiphytic ferns to estimate the atmospheric mercury levels in a small-scale gold mining area of West Java, Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Kono, Yuriko; Rahajoe, Joeni S; Hidayati, Nuril; Kodamatani, Hitoshi; Tomiyasu, Takashi

    2012-09-01

    Mercury pollution is caused by artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) operations along the Cikaniki River (West Java, Indonesia). The atmosphere is one of the primary media through which mercury can disperse. In this study, atmospheric mercury levels are estimated using the native epiphytic fern Asplenium nidus complex (A. nidus) as a biomonitor; these estimates shed light on the atmospheric dispersion of mercury released during mining. Samples were collected from 8 sites along the Cikaniki Basin during September-November, 2008 and September-November, 2009. The A. nidus fronds that were attached to tree trunks 1-3m above the ground were collected and measured for total mercury concentration using cold vapor atomic absorption spectrometry (CVAAS) after acid-digestion. The atmospheric mercury was collected using porous gold collectors, and the concentrations were determined using double-amalgam CVAAS. The highest atmospheric mercury concentration, 1.8 × 10(3) ± 1.6 × 10(3) ngm(-3), was observed at the mining hot spot, and the lowest concentration of mercury, 5.6 ± 2.0 ngm(-3), was observed at the remote site from the Cikaniki River in 2009. The mercury concentrations in A. nidus were higher at the mining village (5.4 × 10(3) ± 1.6 × 10(3) ngg(-1)) than at the remote site (70 ± 30 ngg(-1)). The distribution of mercury in A. nidus was similar to that in the atmosphere; a significant correlation was observed between the mercury concentrations in the air and in A. nidus (r=0.895, P<0.001, n=14). The mercury levels in the atmosphere can be estimated from the mercury concentration in A. nidus using a regression equation: log (Hg(A.nidu)/ngg(-1))=0.740 log (Hg(Air)/ngm (-3)) - 1.324. PMID:22595529

  17. Relationship of Blood Mercury Levels to Health Parameters in the Loggerhead Sea Turtle (Caretta caretta)

    PubMed Central

    Day, Rusty D.; Segars, Al L.; Arendt, Michael D.; Lee, A. Michelle; Peden-Adams, Margie M.

    2007-01-01

    Background Mercury is a pervasive environmental pollutant whose toxic effects have not been studied in sea turtles in spite of their threatened status and evidence of immunosuppression in diseased populations. Objectives In the present study we investigate mercury toxicity in loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) by examining trends between blood mercury concentrations and various health parameters. Methods Blood was collected from free-ranging turtles, and correlations between blood mercury concentrations and plasma chemistries, complete blood counts, lysozyme, and lymphocyte proliferation were examined. Lymphocytes were also harvested from free-ranging turtles and exposed in vitro to methylmercury to assess proliferative responses. Results Blood mercury concentrations were positively correlated with hematocrit and creatine phosphokinase activity, and negatively correlated with lymphocyte cell counts and aspartate amino-transferase. Ex vivo negative correlations between blood mercury concentrations and B-cell proliferation were observed in 2001 and 2003 under optimal assay conditions. In vitro exposure of peripheral blood leukocytes to methylmercury resulted in suppression of proliferative responses for B cells (0.1 μg/g and 0.35 μg/g) and T cells (0.7 μg/g). Conclusions The positive correlation between blood mercury concentration and hematocrit reflects the higher affinity of mercury species for erythrocytes than plasma, and demonstrates the importance of measuring hematocrit when analyzing whole blood for mercury. In vitro immunosuppression occurred at methylmercury concentrations that correspond to approximately 5% of the individuals captured in the wild. This observation and the negative correlation found ex vivo between mercury and lymphocyte numbers and mercury and B-cell proliferative responses suggests that subtle negative impacts of mercury on sea turtle immune function are possible at concentrations observed in the wild. PMID:17938730

  18. Mercury levels in raccoons (Procyon lotor) from the Warta Mouth National Park, northwestern Poland.

    PubMed

    Lanocha, Natalia; Kalisinska, Elzbieta; Kosik-Bogacka, Danuta I; Budis, Halina; Podlasinska, Joanna; Jedrzejewska, Ewa

    2014-06-01

    This is the first report on mercury (Hg) levels in the liver, kidney, skeletal muscle, and brain of raccoon in Europe. It studied Hg concentration in 24 raccoons from the Warta Mouth National Park, northwestern Poland by atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS). The highest total Hg concentrations in the raccoon were found in the liver (maximum, 18.45 mg/kg dry weight), while the lowest in the brain (maximum, 0.49 mg/kg dw). In adult raccoons, Hg concentrations in the liver, kidney, and brain were higher than in immature individuals (p<0.001), while similar in skeletal muscle in both age groups. Our results are consistent with studies by other authors conducted in North America in areas with similar environmental conditions. PMID:24736978

  19. Estimates of ground-level mercury vapor concentrations from postulated launch-pad accidents of NASA space transportation systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dumbauld, R. K.; Rafferty, J. E.; Saterlie, S. F.

    1978-01-01

    NASA has considered the use of mercury ion bombardment engines as extra-terrestrial propulsion systems where low thrust must be provided for long periods of time. However, the mercury fuel in these engines may pose a hazard if it is accidentally released to the troposphere. A description is presented of diffusion-model estimates of maximum 10-minute and 24-hour ground-level concentrations that could result from the accidental release of mercury from Titan/Centaur and Space Shuttle/Tug transportation systems. Three types of accidental release modes have been considered in the concentration calculations. For all three modes, the diffusion-model calculations were made for a variety of meteorological conditions in an effort to obtain estimates of the maximum credible concentrations under 'worst-case' conditions.

  20. [Effect of mercury chloride on the level of lipids and products of their peroxidation in rat vital organs].

    PubMed

    Kaliman, P A; Oksenenko, S V

    2002-01-01

    The influence of mercury chloride on peroxidation processes of lipids and level of common lipids, phospholipids and spectrum of neutral lipids in liver, heart, lung and kidney of rats has been investigated. Administration of mercury chloride in a dose 0.7 mg/100 g of body weight to animals has invoked accumulation of lipids peroxide products in fractions of neutral lipids and phospholipids so it testifies the development of oxidative stress. Decrease of the most sensitive to oxidation fractions in the early stages of oxidative stress development and increase of free cholesterol and its ethers content in kidney and free cholesterol in the heart in more later terms as a result of mercury chloride administration have been revealed. PMID:14964870

  1. Behavior of mercury in bio-systems. II. Depuration of /sup 203/Hg/sup 2 +/ in various trophic levels

    SciTech Connect

    Hamdy, M.K.; Prabhu, N.V.

    1984-01-01

    Using radiotracer techniques, the depuration rates for methylmercury at three trophic levels in an aquatic ecosystem are examined. Bacteria (decomposers), mosquito larvae (primary consumers), and fish (secondary consumers) were studied. Results indicated that depuration rates for mercury were temperature dependent - the rate of depuration increased with increase in temperature (up to 45/sup 0/C)

  2. Mercury cycling in terrestrial watersheds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shanley, James B.; Bishop, Kevin

    2012-01-01

    This chapter discusses mercury cycling in the terrestrial landscape, including inputs from the atmosphere, accumulation in soils and vegetation, outputs in streamflow and volatilization, and effects of land disturbance. Mercury mobility in the terrestrial landscape is strongly controlled by organic matter. About 90% of the atmospheric mercury input is retained in vegetation and organic matter in soils, causing a buildup of legacy mercury. Some mercury is volatilized back to the atmosphere, but most export of mercury from watersheds occurs by streamflow. Stream mercury export is episodic, in association with dissolved and particulate organic carbon, as stormflow and snowmelt flush organic-rich shallow soil horizons. The terrestrial landscape is thus a major source of mercury to downstream aquatic environments, where mercury is methylated and enters the aquatic food web. With ample organic matter and sulfur, methylmercury forms in uplands as well—in wetlands, riparian zones, and other anoxic sites. Watershed features (topography, land cover type, and soil drainage class) are often more important than atmospheric mercury deposition in controlling the amount of stream mercury and methylmercury export. While reductions in atmospheric mercury deposition may rapidly benefit lakes, the terrestrial landscape will respond only over decades, because of the large stock and slow turnover of legacy mercury. We conclude with a discussion of future scenarios and the challenge of managing terrestrial mercury.

  3. Review of State Soil Cleanup Levels for Dioxin (December 2009)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This final report summarizes a survey of state soil cleanup levels for dioxin and characterizes the science underlying these values. The objective of this project was to summarize existing state cleanup levels for dioxin in soil, together with their scientific bases where availa...

  4. A study on blood lipid profiles, aluminum and mercury levels in college students

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Eunim; Hyun, Whajin; Ro, Yoona; Lee, Hongmie

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES College students are in a period of transition from adolescence to adulthood, in which proper dietary habits and balanced nutritional intake are very important. However, improper dietary habits and lifestyles can bring several health problems. This study was performed to investigate blood lipid profiles, blood aluminum and mercury in college students and the relationships among them. SUBJECTS/METHODS The subjects were 80 college students (43 males and 37 females) in Gyeonggi-do. General characteristics, anthropometric measurements, blood pressure, blood lipids, SGOT, SGPT, and blood aluminum and mercury of the subjects were measured and analyzed, and their relationship was studied. RESULTS The BMI was significantly higher in males, 23.69 ± 3.20 kg/m2, than in females, 20.38 ± 2.37 kg/m2 (P < 0.001). The blood pressure was significantly higher in males with 128.93 ± 12.92 mmHg systolic pressure and 77.14 ± 10.31 mmHg diastolic pressure compared to females with 109.78 ± 11.97 mmHg and 65.95 ± 6.92 mmHg, respectively (P < 0.001). HDL cholesterol in males, 61.88 ± 13.06 mg/dl, was lower than 64.73 ± 12.16 mg/dl in females, but other blood lipid levels were higher in males. Blood aluminum was significantly higher in males, 9.12 ± 2.11 µg/L, than in females, 8.03 ± 2.14 µg/L (P < 0.05), and blood mercury was higher in males, 3.08 ± 1.55 µg/L, than in females, 2.64 ± 1.49 µg/L. The blood lipids showed positive correlation with obesity and blood pressure. CONCLUSIONS The degree of obesity, blood pressure, triglycerides, and LDL cholesterol were higher in males, suggesting possible association with chronic disease incidence such as hyperlipidemia and hypertension. Thus, it is considered that a systematic health education is needed for college students, especially for males. PMID:27478552

  5. Total mercury levels in hair, toenail, and urine among women free from occupational exposure and their relations to renal tubular function

    SciTech Connect

    Ohno, Tomoko; Sakamoto, Mineshi; Kurosawa, Tomoko; Dakeishi, Miwako; Iwata, Toyoto; Murata, Katsuyuki . E-mail: winestem@med.akita-u.ac.jp

    2007-02-15

    To investigate the relations among total mercury levels in hair, toenail, and urine, together with potential effects of methylmercury intake on renal tubular function, we determined their levels, and urinary N-acetyl-{beta}-d-glucosaminidase activity (NAG) and {alpha}{sub 1}-microglobulin (AMG) in 59 women free from occupational exposures, and estimated daily mercury intakes from fish and other seafood using a food frequency questionnaire. Mercury levels (mean+/-SD) in the women were 1.51+/-0.91{mu}g/g in hair, 0.59+/-0.32{mu}g/g in toenail, and 0.86+/-0.66{mu}g/g creatinine in urine; and, there were positive correlations among them (P<0.001). The daily mercury intake of 9.15+/-7.84{mu}g/day was significantly correlated with total mercury levels in hair, toenail, and urine (r=0.551, 0.537, and 0.604, P<0.001). Among the women, the NAG and AMG were positively correlated with both the daily mercury intake and mercury levels in hair, toenail, and urine (P<0.01); and, these relations were almost similar when using multiple regression analysis to adjust for possible confounders such as urinary cadmium (0.47+/-0.28{mu}g/g creatinine) and smoking status. In conclusion, mercury resulting from fish consumption can explain total mercury levels in hair, toenail, and urine to some degree (about 30%), partly through the degradation into the inorganic form, and it may confound the renal tubular effect of other nephrotoxic agents. Also, the following equation may be applicable to the population neither with dental amalgam fillings nor with occupational exposures: [hair mercury ({mu}g/g)]=2.44x[toenail mercury ({mu}g/g)].

  6. Development of novel activated carbon-based adsorbents for the control of mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants

    SciTech Connect

    Radisav D. Vidic

    1999-03-01

    In addition to naturally occurring mercury sources, anthropogenic activities increase the mercury loading to the environment. Although not all produced mercury is dissipated directly into the environment, only minor portions of the total production are stocked or recycled, and the rest of the mercury and its compounds is finally released in some way into atmosphere, surface waters and soil, or ends in landfills dumps, and refuse. Since mercury and its compounds are highly toxic, their presence in the environment constitutes potential impact on all living organisms, including man. The first serious consequence of industrial mercury discharges causing neurological disorder even death occurred in Minimata, Japan in 1953. Systematic studies showed that mercury poisoning is mainly found in fish-eating populations. However, various levels of mercury are also found in food other than fish. During the past several decades, research has been conducted on the evaluation of risks due to exposure to mercury and the development of control technologies for mercury emissions. In 1990, the Clean Air Act Amendments listed mercury, along with 10 other metallic species, as a hazardous air pollutant (HAP). This has further stimulated research for mercury control during the past several years. The impact of mercury on humans, sources of mercury in the environment, current mercury control strategies and the objective of this research are discussed in this section.

  7. Overview of investigations into mercury in ground water, soils, and septage, New Jersey coastal plain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barringer, J.L.; Szabo, Z.

    2006-01-01

    Since the early 1980s, investigations by health departments of eight counties in southern New Jersey, by the NJ Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), and subsequently by the US Geological Survey (USGS), have shown that Hg concentrations in water tapped by about 600 domestic wells exceed the maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 2 ??g/L. The wells are finished in the areally extensive unconfined Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer system of New Jersey's Coastal Plain; background concentrations of Hg in water from this system are < 0.01 ??g/L. Evidence of contributions from point sources of Hg, such as landfills or commercial and industrial hazardous-waste sites, is lacking. During 1996-2003, the USGS collected water samples from 203 domestic, irrigation, observation, and production wells using ultraclean techniques; septage, leach-field effluent, soils, and aquifer sediments also were sampled. Elevated concentrations of NH4, B, Cl, NO3, and Na and presence of surfactants in domestic-well water indicate that septic-system effluent can affect water quality in unsewered residential areas, but neither septage nor effluent appears to be a major Hg source. Detections of hydrogen sulfide in ground water at a residential area indicate localized reducing conditions; undetectable SO4 concentrations in water from other residential areas indicate that reducing conditions, which could be conducive to Hg methylation, may be common locally. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs), mostly chlorinated solvents, also are found in ground water at the affected areas, but statistically significant associations between presence of Hg and VOCs were absent for most areas evaluated. Hg concentrations are lower in some filtered water samples than in paired unfiltered samples, likely indicating that some Hg is associated with particles or colloids. The source of colloids may be soils, which, when undisturbed, contain higher concentrations of Hg than do disturbed soils and aquifer sediments. Soil

  8. Evidence of Mercurial Contamination and Denundation Downstream of New Idria Mercury Mine, San Benito County, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Letsinger, H. E.; Sharma, R. K.; Weinman, B.

    2014-12-01

    California's Central Valley water quality and soils are essential to the survival of the valley's communities and agriculture. Therefore, detection of possible contaminants within the valley streams and soils are paramount to the protection of this land and the people that depend upon it. Here we explore the impact of the contaminated stream beds near the New Idria Mercury Mine site, San Benito County, California. Previous work by Ganguli et al. (2000) has been done in this area to determine the mercury levels associated with the water that flows near the ghost town of New Idria. We performed geochemical analyses on the finer bed sediments from channels draining the area, as well as the coarser sediments taken from along the channel banks, to determine mercury transport downriver from the source. Using a novel application of tau, a mass transfer coefficient typically used in critical zone studies or soil production and weathering rates, we determine downstream weathering, accumulation, and transport of mercury. Our initial geochemical data showed higher tau values upstream as well as within the banks of the contaminated streambed and a greater accumulation of mercury near the pollution source (i.e., mine tailings, (τ ~ 103)). Tau results also show elevated mercurial levels existing downstream, with accumulations in mid- (τ ~ 102) and down-stream (τ ~ 10) reaches. Combining tau results with more traditional indices of chemical weathering (CIA) support consistent overall Hg-weathering processes with low levels of chemical weathering and higher dominance of coupled physical-anthropogenic weathering.

  9. Projecting Fish Mercury Levels in the Province of Ontario, Canada and the Implications for Fish and Human Health.

    PubMed

    Gandhi, Nilima; Bhavsar, Satyendra P; Tang, Rex W K; Arhonditsis, George B

    2015-12-15

    Fish mercury levels appear to be increasing in Ontario, Canada, which covers a wide geographical area and contains about 250 000 lakes including a share of the North American Great Lakes. Here we project 2050 mercury levels in Ontario fish, using the recently measured levels and rates of changes observed during the last 15 years, and present potential implications for fish and human health. Percentage of northern Ontario waterbodies where sublethal effects of mercury on fish can occur may increase by 2050 from 60% to >98% for Walleye (WE), 44% to 59-70% for Northern Pike (NP), and 70% to 76-92% for Lake Trout (LT). Ontario waterbodies with unrestricted fish consumption advisories for the general population may deteriorate from 24-76% to <1-33% for WE, 40-95% to 1-93% for NP, and 39-89% to 18-86% for LT. Similarly, Ontario waterbodies with do not eat advisories for the sensitive population may increase from 32-84% to 73-100% for WE, 9-72% to 12-100% for NP, and 19-71% to 24-89% for LT. Risk to health of Ontario fish and humans consuming these fish may increase substantially over the next few decades if the increasing mercury trend continues and updated advisories based on continued monitoring are not issued/followed. PMID:26592742

  10. Investigation of increased mercury levels in the fisheries of Lower East Fork Poplar Creek (Lefpc), Oak Ridge Reservation, Tennessee

    SciTech Connect

    Byrne-Kelly, D.; Cornish, J.; Hart, A.; Southworth, G.; Sims, L.

    2007-07-01

    The DOE Western Environmental Technology Office (WETO) is supporting remediation efforts on the U.S. Department of Energy Oak Ridge Reservation in Oak Ridge, Tennessee by performing this study. MSE Technology Applications, Inc. (MSE) has performed a series of literature reviews and bench-scale testing to further evaluate the mercury problem in the Lower East Fork Poplar Creek (LEFPC) at Oak Ridge. The primary problem is that total mercury (HgT) levels in LEFPC water decrease, while HgT levels in sunfish muscle tissue increase, with distance away from the National Security Complex (NSC), despite extensive source control efforts at the facility and within downstream riparian zones. Furthermore, dissolved methylmercury (d-MeHg) levels increase downstream from the NSC, especially during warm weather and/or high flow events. MSE performed four test series that focused on conversion of aqueous phase elemental mercury (Hg deg. A) to methyl mercury (MeHg) by algal-bacterial bio-films (periphyton) present in the stream-bed of LEFPC. Small (mg/L) quantities of un-sulphured molasses and peptone were added to some of the Hinds Creek samples to stimulate initial bacterial growth. Other Hinds Creek samples either were dosed with glutaraldehyde to preclude microbial growth, or were wrapped in aluminum foil to preclude Hg photochemical redox effects. The bench-scale testing for Phase II was completed August 2006. The final reporting and the planning for Phase III testing are in progress. (authors)

  11. Investigation of Increased Mercury Levels in the Fisheries of Lower East Fork Poplar Creek (LEFPC), Oak Ridge Reservation, Tennessee

    SciTech Connect

    Byrne-Kelly, D.; Cornish, J.; Hart, A.; Southworth, G.; Simms, L.

    2006-07-01

    The DOE Western Environmental Technology Office (WETO) is supporting Oak Ridge's remediation efforts by performing this study. MSE Technology Applications, Inc. (MSE) has performed a series of literature reviews and bench-scale testing to further evaluate the mercury problem in the Lower East Fork Poplar Creek (LEFPC) at Oak Ridge. The primary problem is that total mercury (HgT) levels in LEFPC water decrease, while HgT levels in sunfish muscle tissue increase, with distance away from the National Security Complex (NSC), despite extensive source control efforts at the facility. Furthermore, dissolved methylmercury (d-MeHg) levels increase downstream from the NSC, especially during warm weather and/or high flow events. MSE performed four test series that focused on conversion of dissolved and colloidal forms of elemental mercury (Hg deg.A) to methyl mercury (MeHg) by algal-bacterial bio-films (periphyton) present in the stream-bed of LEFPC; MeHg production by these bio-films under anoxic versus oxic conditions was the critical measurement taken. The bench-scale testing for Phase I was completed November 2005. The final reporting and the planning for Phase II testing are in progress. (authors)

  12. Acute effects of mercuric chloride on intracellular GSH levels and mercury distribution in the fish Oreochromic aureus

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, P.; Min, S.Y.; Keong, W.M.

    1988-02-01

    In recent years there has been much interest in the effects of trace metals on intracellular levels of reduced glutathione (GSH). Most of the research has been performed on rats. As GSH is ubiquitous in living organisms it is of interest to establish a relationship between mercury intoxication and intracellular GSH levels in fish; especially as fish living in rivers and coastal areas are often expose to mercury as an aquatic pollutant. The role of GSH in fish trace metal toxicity has not been thoroughly investigated. The distribution of total glutathione (oxidized + reduced) in selected black sea bass organs seems to follow the established pattern for mammalian organs. Thus, it would appear that teleostian and mammalian glutathione metabolism may have many similarities. There are few reports concerning the effects of mercury during the first few hours of exposure. The aim of this investigation is to establish any changes in organ GSH and mercury levels following just 2 h exposure to mercuric chloride (HgCl/sub 2/).

  13. Mercury hair levels and factors that influence exposure for residents of Huancavelica, Peru

    EPA Science Inventory

    Between 1564 and 1810, nearly 17,000 metric tons of mercury (Hg) vapor were released to the environment during cinnabar refining in the small town of Huancavelica, Peru. The present study characterizes individual exposure to mercury using total and speciated Hg from residential s...

  14. DEVELOPMENT AND TEST APPLICATION A SCREENING-LEVEL MERCURY FATE MODEL AND TOOL FOR EVALUATING WILDLIFE EXPOSURE RISK FOR SURFACE WATERS WITH MERCURY-CONTAMINATED SEDIMENTS (SERAFM)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Complex chemical cycling of mercury in aquatic ecosystems means that tracing the linkage between anthropogenic and natural loadings of mercury to watersheds and water bodies and associated concentrations in the environment are difficult to establish without the assistance of nume...

  15. Atmospheric mercury incorporation in soils of an area impacted by a chlor-alkali plant (Grenoble, France): contribution of canopy uptake.

    PubMed

    Guédron, Stéphane; Grangeon, Sylvain; Jouravel, Glorianne; Charlet, Laurent; Sarret, Géraldine

    2013-02-15

    This study focused on the fluxes of mercury (Hg) and mechanisms of incorporation into soils surrounding a chlor-alkali plant suspected to have emitted up to ~600 kg Hg year(-1) for decades into the atmosphere. Comparison of vertical Hg soil profiles with As, Cu, Ni and Zn (which were not emitted by the plant) support Hg enrichment in surface horizons due to atmospheric Hg inputs from the chlor-alkali plant. Based on chemical extractions and elemental correlations, Hg was found to be weakly leachable and bio-available for plants, and most probably strongly bound to organic matter. In contrast, other trace elements were probably associated with phyllosilicates, iron oxides or with primary minerals. Hg stocks in the surface horizon of a forested soil (1255 mg Hg m(-3)) were two-fold higher than in an agricultural soil (636 mg Hg m(-3)) at a similar distance to the plant. The difference was attributed to the interception of atmospheric Hg by the canopy (most likely gaseous elemental Hg and reactive gaseous Hg) and subsequent litterfall incorporation. Some differences in the ability to trap atmospheric Hg were observed between tree species. The characterization of the litter showed an increasing Hg concentration in the plant material proportional to their degradation stage. In agricultural soils, very low Hg concentrations found in corn leaves and grains suggested a limited uptake via both the foliar and root pathways. Thus, the short-term risk of Hg transfer to agricultural crops and higher levels of the trophic chain appeared limited. A possible risk which remains to be evaluated is the possible transfer of Hg-rich particles from the forest topsoil to downstream aquatic ecosystems during rain and snowmelt events. PMID:23354376

  16. Mercury accumulation in soils and plants in the Almadén mining district, Spain: one of the most contaminated sites on Earth.

    PubMed

    Molina, José Antonio; Oyarzun, Roberto; Esbrí, José María; Higueras, Pablo

    2006-10-01

    Although mercury (Hg) mining in the Almadén district ceased in May 2002, the consequences of 2000 years of mining in the district has resulted in the dissemination of Hg into the surrounding environment where it poses an evident risk to biota and human health. This risk needs to be properly evaluated. The uptake of Hg has been found to be plant-specific. To establish the different manners in which plants absorb Hg, we carried out a survey of Hg levels in the soils and plants in the most representative habitats of this Mediterranean area and found that the Hg concentrations varied greatly and were dependent on the sample being tested (0.13-2,695 microg g(-1) Hg). For example, the root samples had concentrations ranging from 0.06 (Oenanthe crocata, Rumex induratus) to 1095 (Polypogon monspeliensis) microg g(-1) Hg, while in the leaf samples, the range was from 0.16 (Cyperus longus) to 1278 (Polypogon monspeliensis) microg g(-1) Hg. There are four well-differentiated patterns of Hg uptake: (1) the rate of uptake is constant, independent of Hg concentration in the soil (e.g., Pistacia lentiscus, Quercus rotundifolia); (2) after an initial linear relationship between uptake and soil concentration, no further increase in Hg(plant) is observed (e.g., Asparagus acutifolius, Cistus ladanifer); (3) no increase in uptake is recorded until a threshold is surpassed, and thereafter a linear relationship between Hg(plant) and Hg(soil) is established (e.g., Rumex bucephalophorus, Cistus crispus); (4) there is no relationship between Hg(plant) and Hg(soil )(e.g., Oenanthe crocata and Cistus monspeliensis). Overall, the Hg concentrations found in plants from the Almadén district clearly reflect the importance of contamination processes throughout the study region. PMID:17013679

  17. A modified EK method with an I-/I2 lixiviant assisted and approaching cathodes to remedy mercury contaminated field soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Zhemin; Zhang, Jianda; Qu, Liya; Dong, Zeqin; Zheng, Shenshen; Wang, Wenhua

    2009-05-01

    Wanshan mercury mine is the largest cinnabar deposit in Guizhou, China. Few effective methods had been achieved to remedy Hg heavily contaminated field soils. In this paper, a modified EK method with approaching cathodes (AC-EK) and an I-/I2 lixiviant was described to remedy mercury-contaminated field soils near Wanshan mercury mine. Paddy Soil I and Paddy Soil II were sampled and contained 576.73 ± 45.50 and 491.35 ± 4.73 mg/kg Hg, respectively. Although they contained 6.9 and 9.4% organic matter respectively, more than 92 and 89% Hg were removed by AC-EK within 5 days. Removal ratio increased by 0.21 and 0.68 times using EK process with ACs over that with one single cathode (SC-EK). AC-EK method saved nearly 26.4-28.1% electric power as compared to SC-EK method. As an I-/I2 lixiviant solution was used to solubilize HgS(HgO) during EK process, the bonding of Hg to organic functional S groups should be less important than the binding to inner sites of organic matter in soil. The relationship between EK remediation effect and soil organic matter content was fitted to a linear model. It turned out that when soil OM increased by 1.0%, EK removal ratio (%) of Hg would decrease by 2.63%.

  18. The removal of mercury from solid mixed waste using chemical leaching processes

    SciTech Connect

    Gates, D.D.; Chao, K.K.; Cameron, P.A.

    1995-07-01

    The focus of this research was to evaluate chemical leaching as a technique to treat soils, sediments, and glass contaminated with either elemental mercury or a combination of several mercury species. Potassium iodide/iodine solutions were investigated as chemical leaching agents for contaminated soils and sediments. Clean, synthetic soil material and surrogate storm sewer sediments contaminated with mercury were treated with KI/I{sub 2} solutions. It was observed that these leaching solutions could reduce the mercury concentration in soil and sediments by 99.8%. Evaluation of selected posttreatment sediment samples revealed that leachable mercury levels in the treated solids exceeded RCRA requirements. The results of these studies suggest that KI/I{sub 2} leaching is a treatment process that can be used to remove large quantities of mercury from contaminated soils and sediments and may be the only treatment required if treatment goals are established on Hg residual concentrations in solid matrices. Fluorescent bulbs were used to simulate mercury contaminated glass mixed waste. To achieve mercury contamination levels similar to those found in larger bulbs such as those used in DOE facilities a small amount of Hg was added to the crushed bulbs. The most effective agents for leaching mercury from the crushed fluorescent bulbs were KI/I{sub 2}, NaOCl, and NaBr + acid. Radionuclide surrogates were added to both the EPA synthetic soil material and the crushed fluorescent bulbs to determine the fate of radionuclides following chemical leaching with the leaching agents determined to be the most promising. These experiments revealed that although over 98% of the dosed mercury solubilized and was found in the leaching solution, no Cerium was measured in the posttreatment leaching solution. This finding suggest that Uranium, for which Ce was used as a surrogate, would not solubilize during leaching of mercury contaminated soil or glass.

  19. Evaluating the spatial variation of total mercury in young-of-year yellow perch (Perca flavescens), surface water and upland soil for watershed-lake systems within the southern Boreal Shield

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gabriel, M.C.; Kolka, R.; Wickman, T.; Nater, E.; Woodruff, L.

    2009-01-01

    The primary objective of this research is to investigate relationships between mercury in upland soil, lake water and fish tissue and explore the cause for the observed spatial variation of THg in age one yellow perch (Perca flavescens) for ten lakes within the Superior National Forest. Spatial relationships between yellow perch THg tissue concentration and a total of 45 watershed and water chemistry parameters were evaluated for two separate years: 2005 and 2006. Results show agreement with other studies where watershed area, lake water pH, nutrient levels (specifically dissolved NO3--N) and dissolved iron are important factors controlling and/or predicting fish THg level. Exceeding all was the strong dependence of yellow perch THg level on soil A-horizon THg and, in particular, soil O-horizon THg concentrations (Spearman ?? = 0.81). Soil B-horizon THg concentration was significantly correlated (Pearson r = 0.75) with lake water THg concentration. Lakes surrounded by a greater percentage of shrub wetlands (peatlands) had higher fish tissue THg levels, thus it is highly possible that these wetlands are main locations for mercury methylation. Stepwise regression was used to develop empirical models for the purpose of predicting the spatial variation in yellow perch THg over the studied region. The 2005 regression model demonstrates it is possible to obtain good prediction (up to 60% variance description) of resident yellow perch THg level using upland soil O-horizon THg as the only independent variable. The 2006 model shows even greater prediction (r2 = 0.73, with an overall 10??ng/g [tissue, wet weight] margin of error), using lake water dissolved iron and watershed area as the only model independent variables. The developed regression models in this study can help with interpreting THg concentrations in low trophic level fish species for untested lakes of the greater Superior National Forest and surrounding Boreal ecosystem. ?? 2009 Elsevier B.V.

  20. Fate and aqueous transport of mercury in light of the Clean Air Mercury Rule for coal-fired electric power plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arzuman, Anry

    coefficients were derived. Mercury air-phase removal efficiency was studied as a function of dominant mercury species vapor pressures, the amount of chlorine, sorbent injection rate and adsorption capacities, and process temperature and modifications. A mercury air phase removal algorithm was derived which defines the future removal efficiencies as a function of activated carbon injection rate. Mercury adsorption on soil was studied as a function of Mercury Mass Law incorporating the dominant aquatic mercury species, pH, chlorine and sulfur concentrations, and the amount of complexed hydroxyl groups. Aquatic mercury longitudinal plume delineation was studied using the Domenico and Robbins function. A Monte Carlo simulation was performed using random number series (5000) for all of the variables in the Domenico and Robbins and mercury retardation functions. The probability that the Maximum Contaminant Level for mercury will be exceeded was found to be equal approximately 1 percent of all soil-related fly ash applications.

  1. Factors Affecting Mercury and Selenium Levels-in New Jersey Flatfish: Low Risk to Human Consumers

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Jeitner, Christian; Donio, Mark; Shukla, Sheila; Gochfeld, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Some fish contain high levels of mercury (Hg), which could pose a risk to fish eaters themselves or their children. In making decisions about fish consumption, people must decide whether to eat fish, how much to eat, what species to eat, and what size fish to eat, as well as suitable (or unsuitable) locations, among other factors. Yet to make sound decisions, people need to know the levels of Hg in fish as a function of species, size, and location of capture. Levels of Hg and selenium (Se) were examined in three species of flatfish (fluke or summer flounder [Paralichthys dentatus], winter flounder [Pseudopleuronectes americanus], and windowpane [Scophthalmus aquosus]) from New Jersey as a function of species, fish size, season, and location. Flatfish were postulated to have low levels of Hg because they are low on the food chain and are bottom feeders, and data were generated to provide individuals with information on a species that might be safe to eat regularly. Although there were interspecific differences in Hg levels in the 3 species, total Hg levels averaged 0.18, 0.14, and 0.06 ppm (μg/g, wet weigh) in windowpane, fluke, and winter flounder, and selenium levels averaged 0.36, 0.35, and 0.25 ppm, respectively. For windowpane, 15% had Hg levels above 0.3 ppm, but no individual fish had Hg levels over 0.5 ppm. There were no significant seasonal differences in Hg levels, although Se was significantly higher in fluke in summer compared to spring. There were few geographical differences among New Jersey locations. Correlations between Hg and Se levels were low. Data, based on 464 fish samples, indicate that Hg levels are below various advisory levels and pose little risk to typical New Jersey fish consumers. A 70-kg person eating 1 meal (8 oz or 227 g) per week would not exceed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reference dose of 0.1 μg/kg body weight/d of methylmercury (MeHg). However, high-end fish eaters consuming several such meals per week may exceed

  2. Determination of mercury in soils and sediments by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry with slurry sampling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-García, Ignacio; Sánchez-Merlos, Mateo; Hernández-Córdoba, Manuel

    1997-12-01

    A graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometric procedure for the determination of mercury is presented, in which the samples are suspended in a solution containing hydrofluoric and nitric acids. Silver nitrate (4% m/v) and potassium permanganate (3%) are incorporated, in the order specified, and aliquots are directly introduced into the graphite furnace. A fast heating programme with no conventional pyrolysis step is used. The detection limit for mercury in a 125 mg ml -1 suspension is 0.1 μg g -1. Calibration is performed by using aqueous standards. The reliability of the procedure is proved by analysing certified reference materials.

  3. Characterization of Soil Organic Matter in Peat Soil with Different Humification Levels using FTIR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teong, I. T.; Felix, N. L. L.; Mohd, S.; Sulaeman, A.

    2016-07-01

    Peat soil is defined as an accumulation of the debris and vegetative under the water logging condition. Soil organic matter of peat soil was affected by the environmental, weather, types of vegetative. Peat soil was normally classified based on its level of humification. Humification can be defined as the transformation of numerous group of substances (proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, etc.) and individual molecules present in living organic matter into group of substances with similar properties (humic substances). During the peat transformation process, content of soil organic matter also will change. Hence, that is important to determine out the types of the organic compound. FTIR (Fourier Transform Infrared) is a machine which is used to differential soil organic matter by using infrared. Infrared is a types of low energy which can determine the organic minerals. Hence, FTIR can be suitable as an indicator on its level of humification. The main objective of this study is to identify an optimized method to characterization of the soil organic content in different level of humification. The case study areas which had been chosen for this study are Parit Sulong, Batu Pahat and UCTS, Sibu. Peat soil samples were taken by every 0.5 m depth until it reached the clay layer. However, the soil organic matter in different humification levels is not significant. FTIR is an indicator which is used to determine the types of soil, but it is unable to differentiate the soil organic matter in peat soil FTIR can determine different types of the soil based on different wave length. Generally, soil organic matter was found that it is not significant to the level of humification.

  4. Mercury and selenium levels in 19 species of saltwater fish from New Jersey as a function of species, size, and season

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael

    2014-01-01

    There are few data on risks to biota and humans from mercury levels in saltwater fish. This paper examines mercury and selenium levels in muscle of 19 species of fish caught by recreational fisherfolk off the New Jersey shore, as a function of species of fish, size, and season, and risk of mercury to consumers. Average mercury levels ranged from 0.01 ppm (wet weight) (Menhaden Brevoortia tyrannus) to 1.83 ppm (Mako Shark Isurus oxyrinchus). There were four categories of mercury levels: very high (only Mako), high (averaging 0.3–0.5 ppm, 3 species), medium (0.14–0.20 ppm, 10 species), and low (below 0.13 ppm, 5 species). Average selenium levels for the fish species ranged from 0.18 ppm to 0.58 ppm, and had lower variability than mercury (coefficient of variation=38.3 vs 69.1%), consistent with homeostatic regulation of this essential element. The correlation between mercury and selenium was significantly positive for five and negative for two species. Mercury levels showed significant positive correlations with fish size for ten species. Size was the best predictor of mercury levels. Selenium showed no consistent relationship to fish length. Over half of the fish species had some individual fish with mercury levels over 0.3 ppm, and a third had fish with levels over 0.5 ppm, levels that pose a human health risk for high end consumers. Conversely several fish species had no individuals above 0.5 ppm, and few above 0.3 ppm, suggesting that people who eat fish frequently, can reduce their risk from mercury by selecting which species (and which size) to consume. Overall, with the exception of shark, Bluefin Tuna (Thunnus thynnus), Bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) and Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis), the species sampled are generally medium to low in mercury concentration. Selenium:mercury molar ratios were generally above 1:1, except for the Mako shark. PMID:21292311

  5. Measurements of Mercury Released from Solidified/Stabilized Waste Forms

    SciTech Connect

    Mattus, C.H.

    2001-04-19

    This report covers work performed during FY 1999-2000 in support of treatment demonstrations conducted for the Mercury Working Group of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Mixed Waste Focus Area. In order to comply with the requirements of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, as implemented by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), DOE must use one of these procedures for wastes containing mercury at levels above 260 ppm: a retorting/roasting treatment or an incineration treatment (if the wastes also contain organics). The recovered radioactively contaminated mercury must then be treated by an amalgamation process prior to disposal. The DOE Mixed Waste Focus Area and Mercury Working Group are working with the EPA to determine if some alternative processes could treat these types of waste directly, thereby avoiding for DOE the costly recovery step. They sponsored a demonstration in which commercial vendors applied their technologies for the treatment of two contaminated waste soils from Brookhaven National Laboratory. Each soil was contaminated with {approx}4500 ppm mercury; however, one soil had as a major radioelement americium-241, while the other contained mostly europium-152. The project described in this report addressed the need for data on the mercury vapor released by the solidified/stabilized mixed low-level mercury wastes generated during these demonstrations as well as the comparison between the untreated and treated soils. A related work began in FY 1998, with the measurement of the mercury released by amalgamated mercury, and the results were reported in ORNL/TM-13728. Four treatments were performed on these soils. The baseline was obtained by thermal treatment performed by SepraDyne Corp., and three forms of solidification/stabilization were employed: one using sulfur polymer cement (Brookhaven National Laboratory), one using portland cement [Allied Technology Group (ATG)], and a third using proprietary additives (Nuclear Fuel Services).

  6. Landscape-level patterns of mercury contamination of fish in North Texas, USA.

    PubMed

    Drenner, Ray W; Chumchal, Matthew M; Wente, Stephen P; McGuire, Mandy; Drenner, S Matthew

    2011-09-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a toxic metal that is found in aquatic food webs and is hazardous to humans. An emerging conceptual model predicts that the areas of the landscape that have the potential to contain food webs with elevated concentrations of Hg are those that receive high amounts of Hg and sulfate deposition and have high coverage of forests and wetlands and low coverage of agriculture. The objective of the present study was to test this conceptual model using concentrations of Hg in largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) from 145 reservoirs in four ecoregions of North Texas. The highest level of Hg contamination in fish was in the South Central Plains, the ecoregion that receives the highest levels of Hg and sulfate deposition and contains extensive forest and wetland habitat and little agriculture. The present study has important implications for other areas of the United States, because the South Central Plains extend into parts of Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Arkansas, covering a total area of 152,132 km(2) of the southern United States. PMID:21647946

  7. Total mercury, cadmium and lead levels in main export fish of Sri Lanka.

    PubMed

    Jinadasa, B K K K; Edirisinghe, E M R K B; Wickramasinghe, I

    2014-01-01

    Total mercury (Hg), cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) levels were determined in the muscle of four commercialised exported fish species Thunnus albacares (yellowfin tuna), Xiphias gladius (swordfish), Makaira indica (black marlin) and Lutjanus sp (red snapper) collected from the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka, during July 2009-March 2010 and measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Results show that swordfish (n = 176) contained the highest total Hg (0.90 ± 0.51 mg/kg) and Cd (0.09 ± 0.13 mg/kg) levels, whereas yellowfin tuna (n = 140) contained the highest Pb levels (0.11 ± 0.16 mg/kg). The lowest total Hg (0.16 ± 0.11 mg/kg), Cd (0.01 ± 0.01 mg/kg) and Pb (0.04 ± 0.04 mg/kg) levels were found in red snapper (n = 28). Black marlin (n = 24) contained moderate levels of total Hg (0.49 ± 0.37), Cd (0.02 ± 0.02) and Pb (0.05 ± 0.05). Even though there are some concerns during certain months of the year, this study demonstrates the safety of main export fish varieties in terms of total Hg, Cd and Pb. PMID:25070289

  8. Mercury, Cadmium, and Lead Levels in Human Placenta: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Esteban-Vasallo, María D.; Aragonés, Nuria; Pollan, Marina; López-Abente, Gonzalo

    2012-01-01

    Background: Placental tissue may furnish information on the exposure of both mother and fetus. Mercury (Hg), cadmium (Cd), and lead (Pb) are toxicants of interest in pregnancy because they are associated with alterations in child development. Objectives: The aim of this study was to summarize the available information regarding total Hg, Cd, and Pb levels in human placenta and possible related factors. Methods: We performed a systematic search of PubMed/MEDLINE, EMBASE, Lilacs, OSH, and Web of Science for original papers on total Hg, Cd, or Pb levels in human placenta that were published in English or Spanish (1976–2011). Data on study design, population characteristics, collection and analysis of placenta specimens, and main results were extracted using a standardized form. Results: We found a total of 79 papers (73 different studies). Hg, Cd, and Pb levels were reported in 24, 46, and 46 studies, respectively. Most studies included small convenience samples of healthy pregnant women. Studies were heterogeneous regarding populations selected, processing of specimens, and presentation of results. Hg concentrations > 50 ng/g were found in China (Shanghai), Japan, and the Faroe Islands. Cd levels ranged from 1.2 ng/g to 53 ng/g and were highest in the United States, Japan, and Eastern Europe. Pb showed the greatest variability, with levels ranging from 1.18 ng/g in China (Shanghai) to 500 ng/g in a polluted area of Poland. Conclusion: The use of the placenta as a biomarker to assess heavy metals exposure is not properly developed because of heterogeneity among the studies. International standardized protocols are needed to enhance comparability and increase the usefulness of this promising tissue in biomonitoring studies. PMID:22591711

  9. Landscape level differences in soil carbon and nitrogen: implications for soil carbon sequestration

    SciTech Connect

    Garten Jr, Charles T; Ashwood, Tom L

    2002-12-01

    The objective of this research was to understand how land cover and topography act, independently or together, as determinants of soil carbon and nitrogen storage over a complex terrain. Such information could help to direct land management for the purpose of carbon sequestration. Soils were sampled under different land covers and at different topographic positions on the mostly forested 14,000 ha Oak Ridge Reservation in Tennessee, USA. Most of the soil carbon stock, to a 40-cm soil depth, was found to reside in the surface 20 cm of mineral soil. Surface soil carbon and nitrogen stocks were partitioned into particulate ({ge}53 {micro}m) and mineral-associated organic matter (<53 {micro}m). Generally, soils under pasture had greater nitrogen availability, greater carbon and nitrogen stocks, and lower C:N ratios than soils under transitional vegetation and forests. The effects of topography were usually secondary to those of land cover. Because of greater soil carbon stocks, and greater allocation of soil carbon to mineral-associated organic matter (a long-term pool), we conclude that soil carbon sequestration, but not necessarily total ecosystem carbon storage, is greater under pastures than under forests. The implications of landscape-level variation in soil carbon and nitrogen for carbon sequestration are discussed at several different levels: (1) nitrogen limitations to soil carbon storage; (2) controls on soil carbon turnover as a result of litter chemistry and soil carbon partitioning; (3) residual effects of past land use history; and (4) statistical limitations to the quantification of soil carbon stocks.

  10. Mercury levels in fisherman and their household members in Zhoushan, China: impact of public health.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Jinping; Gao, Lili; Zhao, Wenchang; Liu, Xiaojie; Sakamoto, Mineshi; Wang, Wenhua

    2009-04-01

    Zhoushan Island is situated in the coast of the East China Sea. In order to assess the potential health risks associated with dietary consumption of mercury, hair samples from 59 piscatorial households, thirteen species of fish, crops and poultry samples were collected from the fishing villagers of Zhoushan. Total mercury (T-Hg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations in the fathers' hair (mean, 5.7 and 3.8 microg/g) were approximately 2.5 and 2.1 times greater and 2.6 and 2.0 times higher than those of their wives (2.3 and 1.8 microg/g) and their children (2.2 and 1.7 microg/g), respectively. However, the mean quantity of the fish consumed by the fathers was 2.5 and 2.4 times higher than those of the mothers and children, implying that there was a wide variation in hair Hg concentrations between the fathers and the mothers and children of the same household, which was probably related to the quantity, frequency and type of fish consumed. The average T-Hg and MeHg concentrations in all species of fish were 0.26 and 0.18 microg/g, respectively. Approximately, 15% and 19% of the samples showed T-Hg and MeHg levels which exceeded the limit established by the Chinese National Standard Agency (CNSA) (0.3 and 0.2 microg/g), respectively. However, T-Hg and MeHg levels in crops, poultry, milk, drinking water, food oil and salt samples were all below the corresponding CNSA limit. The estimated total daily dietary intakes of T-Hg and MeHg via different food types showed that fish intake was the major source (>85%) of Hg exposure. The consumption advisories for the total quantity of thirteen species of fish were 69.3, 58.7 and 15.0 g per day for fathers, mothers and children, respectively. PMID:19201452

  11. Mercury Concentrations in Plant Tissues as Affected by FGDG Application to Soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Flue Gas Desulfurization Gypsum (FGDG) is produced by reducing sulfur dioxide emissions from themo-electric coal-fired power plants. The most common practice of FGDG production may trap some of the Mercury (Hg) present in the coal that normally would escape as vapor in the stack gases. Concern for t...

  12. Mercury in Orange Birch Bolete Leccinum versipelle and soil substratum: bioconcentration by mushroom and probable dietary intake by consumers.

    PubMed

    Krasińska, Grażyna; Falandysz, Jerzy

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the contamination, accumulation, and distribution of mercury in fruiting bodies by Leccinum versipelle fungus collected from distant sites across Poland. Mercury was determined using validated method by cold-vapor atomic absorption spectroscopy after direct sample matrix combustion. A large set of data gained using 371 fruiting bodies and 204 soil samples revealed the susceptibility of L. versipelle to Hg contamination and permitted the estimation of probable intake of Hg contaminant by consumers foraging for this species. The range of median values of Hg determined in caps of L. versipelle was from 0.20 to 2.0 mg kg(-1) dry biomass, and the median for 19 localities was 0.65 mg kg(-1) dry biomass. The values of the Hg bioconcentration factor (BCF) determined for L. versipelle correlated negatively with Hg contents. Mercury in topsoil beneath L. versipelle ranged from 0.019 to 0.041 mg kg(-1) dry matter for less-contaminated locations (BCF of 17 to 65 for caps) and from 0.076 to 0.39 mg kg(-1) dry matter for more contaminated locations (BCF of 1.9 to 22). Fruiting bodies of L. versipelle collected in some regions of Poland if consumed in amount of 300 g in one meal in a week could provide Hg doses above the provisionally tolerable weekly intake (PTWI) value of 0.004 mg Hg kg(-1) body mass, while regular consumptions for most of the locations were below the limit even with more frequent consumption. Also summarized are available data on Hg for three species of fungi of genus Leccinum foraged in Europe. PMID:26347421

  13. A coupled monitoring network to conduct an assessment of mercury transformation and mobilization in floodplain soils: South River, Virginia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazareva, O.; Sparks, D. L.; Landis, R.; Ptacek, C. J.; Hicks, S.; Montgomery, D.

    2013-12-01

    Mercury (Hg) was used between 1929 and 1950 by the DuPont plant in the production of rayon acetate fiber in Waynesboro, Virginia and released into the South River. The contamination of Hg was discovered in the 1970s and remained elevated in water, soil, sediments, and biota. The primary goal of this study is to investigate the processes that govern biogeochemical transformation and mobilization of Hg in floodplain soils at South River Mile 3.5, characterize geochemical gradients in soils and how they change over time, and to enable targeted sampling at Hg loading hot spots. The biogeochemical data will play a supporting role and be used to further develop our understanding of the processes controlling the leaching of Hg and our conceptual model. Our over-arching hypothesis is to test if leaching of bank soils is a significant source of dissolved or colloidal inorganic Hg. This effort requires an interdisciplinary geochemical approach and sensor technology to understand the interactions between floodplain soil, groundwater, and river. Our investigation will include 10 months' worth data from a number of state-of-the-art in-situ monitoring sensors, such as custom-designed redox probes, soil moisture, temperature, pressure, and conductivity installed at the site. Our preliminary results showed that the concentration of total Hg in soils was up to 900 mg/kg (wet weight).There is a significant redox gradient across the floodplain soil profile. Within the top 40 -70 cm, major changes in redox conditions from oxidizing (Eh ≈+600 mV) to very reducing (Eh ≈-300 mV) corresponded to heavy rainfall and overbank flooding events. High variations in stream stage may govern the surface water - groundwater exchange facilitating the downward or upward movement of the capillary fringe and saturated zone through the soil horizons, affecting soil redox potential, stability of Hg-bearing minerals and leaching of inorganic Hg into dissolved and colloidal phases. These phases may be

  14. Feathers as a Tool to Assess Mercury Contamination in Gentoo Penguins: Variations at the Individual Level.

    PubMed

    Pedro, Sara; Xavier, José C; Tavares, Sílvia; Trathan, Phil N; Ratcliffe, Norman; Paiva, Vitor H; Medeiros, Renata; Pereira, Eduarda; Pardal, Miguel A

    2015-01-01

    Feathers have been widely used to assess mercury contamination in birds as they reflect metal concentrations accumulated between successive moult periods: they are also easy to sample and have minimum impact on the study birds. Moult is considered the major pathway for mercury excretion in seabirds. Penguins are widely believed to undergo a complete, annual moult during which they do not feed. As penguins lose all their feathers, they are expected to have a low individual-variability in feather mercury concentration as all feathers are formed simultaneously from the same somatic reserves. This assumption is central to penguin studies that use feathers to examine the annual or among-individual variation in mercury concentrations in penguins. To test this assumption, we measured the mercury concentrations in 3-5 body feathers of 52 gentoo penguins (Pygoscelis papua) breeding at Bird Island, South Georgia (54°S 38°W). Twenty-five percent of the penguins studied showed substantial within-individual variation in the amount of mercury in their feathers (Coefficient of Variation: 34.7-96.7%). This variation may be caused by differences in moult patterns among individuals within the population leading to different interpretations in the overall population. Further investigation is now needed to fully understand individual variation in penguins' moult. PMID:26352664

  15. Feathers as a Tool to Assess Mercury Contamination in Gentoo Penguins: Variations at the Individual Level

    PubMed Central

    Pedro, Sara; Xavier, José C.; Tavares, Sílvia; Trathan, Phil N.; Ratcliffe, Norman; Paiva, Vitor H.; Medeiros, Renata; Pereira, Eduarda; Pardal, Miguel A.

    2015-01-01

    Feathers have been widely used to assess mercury contamination in birds as they reflect metal concentrations accumulated between successive moult periods: they are also easy to sample and have minimum impact on the study birds. Moult is considered the major pathway for mercury excretion in seabirds. Penguins are widely believed to undergo a complete, annual moult during which they do not feed. As penguins lose all their feathers, they are expected to have a low individual-variability in feather mercury concentration as all feathers are formed simultaneously from the same somatic reserves. This assumption is central to penguin studies that use feathers to examine the annual or among-individual variation in mercury concentrations in penguins. To test this assumption, we measured the mercury concentrations in 3–5 body feathers of 52 gentoo penguins (Pygoscelis papua) breeding at Bird Island, South Georgia (54°S 38°W). Twenty-five percent of the penguins studied showed substantial within-individual variation in the amount of mercury in their feathers (Coefficient of Variation: 34.7–96.7%). This variation may be caused by differences in moult patterns among individuals within the population leading to different interpretations in the overall population. Further investigation is now needed to fully understand individual variation in penguins’ moult. PMID:26352664

  16. Perchlorate levels in soil and waters from the Atacama Desert.

    PubMed

    Calderón, R; Palma, P; Parker, D; Molina, M; Godoy, F A; Escudey, M

    2014-02-01

    Perchlorate is an anion that originates as a contaminant in ground and surface waters. The presence of perchlorate in soil and water samples from northern Chile (Atacama Desert) was investigated by ion chromatography-electrospray mass spectrometry. Results indicated that perchlorate was found in five of seven soils (cultivated and uncultivated) ranging from 290 ± 1 to 2,565 ± 2 μg/kg. The greatest concentration of perchlorate was detected in Humberstone soil (2,565 ± 2 μg/kg) associated with nitrate deposits. Perchlorate levels in Chilean soils are greater than those reported for uncultivated soils in the United States. Perchlorate was also found in superficial running water ranging from 744 ± 0.01 to 1,480 ± 0.02 μg/L. Perchlorate water concentration is 30-60 times greater than levels established by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (24.5 μg/L) for drinking. PMID:24165784

  17. Levels of cadmium, mercury, and lead in Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus) stranded on the Brazilian coast.

    PubMed

    Vega, Claudia M; Siciliano, Salvatore; Barrocas, Paulo R G; Hacon, Sandra S; Campos, Reinaldo C; do Couto Jacob, Silvana; Ott, Paulo Henrique

    2010-02-01

    Cadmium (Cd), mercury (Hg), and lead (Pb) were determined in samples of liver and breast muscles of first-year Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus), from two different areas on the Brazilian coast, 35 on the Rio de Janeiro coast and 12 on the Rio Grande do Sul coast. In both areas, Cd concentrations in muscle samples were <0.025 microg/g. However, the Cd and Hg concentrations found in liver and Hg concentrations found in muscle showed a significant difference between the two regions. The geometric mean of the concentrations was higher in the specimens from Rio de Janeiro (Cd--6.8 microg/g; Hg--liver, 1.6 microg/g, and muscle, 0.4 microg/g wet weight) than in those from Rio Grande do Sul (Cd--2.3 microg/g; Hg--liver, 0.9 microg/g, and muscle, 0.1 microg/g wet weight). The site differences could be related to differences in diet influenced by geographic factors. Brazil's southeastern coast is highly urbanized, and its coastal waters are contaminated by the waste of agricultural and industrial activities. There is a lack of information on the levels of heavy metals in S. magellanicus, however, their wide distribution and top position in the trophic chain make the use of stranded specimens an attractive source of information for monitoring heavy metals in the South Atlantic coast. PMID:19582498

  18. Total mercury, methylmercury, and selected elements in soils of the Fishing Brook watershed, Hamilton County, New York, and the McTier Creek watershed, Aiken County, South Carolina, 2008

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Woodruff, Laurel G.; Cannon, William F.; Knightes, Christopher D.; Chapelle, Francis H.; Bradley, Paul M.; Burns, Douglas A.; Brigham, Mark E.; Lowery, Mark A.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury is an element of on-going concern for human and aquatic health. Mercury sequestered in upland and wetland soils represents a source that may contribute to mercury contamination in sensitive ecosystems. An improved understanding of mercury cycling in stream ecosystems requires identification and quantification of mercury speciation and transport dynamics in upland and wetland soils within a watershed. This report presents data for soils collected in 2008 from two small watersheds in New York and South Carolina. In New York, 163 samples were taken from multiple depths or soil horizons at 70 separate locations near Fishing Brook, located in Hamilton County. At McTier Creek, in Aiken County, South Carolina, 81 samples from various soil horizons or soil depths were collected from 24 locations. Sample locations within each watershed were selected to characterize soil geochemistry in distinct land-cover compartments. Soils were analyzed for total mercury, selenium, total and carbonate carbon, and 42 other elements. A subset of the samples was also analyzed for methylmercury.

  19. IMPACT OF ELIMINATING MERCURY REMOVAL PRETREATMENT ON THE PERFORMANCE OF A HIGH LEVEL RADIOACTIVE WASTE MELTER OFFGAS SYSTEM

    SciTech Connect

    Zamecnik, J; Alexander Choi, A

    2009-03-17

    The Defense Waste Processing Facility at the Savannah River Site processes high-level radioactive waste from the processing of nuclear materials that contains dissolved and precipitated metals and radionuclides. Vitrification of this waste into borosilicate glass for ultimate disposal at a geologic repository involves chemically modifying the waste to make it compatible with the glass melter system. Pretreatment steps include removal of excess aluminum by dissolution and washing, and processing with formic and nitric acids to: (1) adjust the reduction-oxidation (redox) potential in the glass melter to reduce radionuclide volatility and improve melt rate; (2) adjust feed rheology; and (3) reduce by steam stripping the amount of mercury that must be processed in the melter. Elimination of formic acid pretreatment has been proposed to eliminate the production of hydrogen in the pretreatment systems; alternative reductants would be used to control redox. However, elimination of formic acid would result in significantly more mercury in the melter feed; the current specification is no more than 0.45 wt%, while the maximum expected prior to pretreatment is about 2.5 wt%. An engineering study has been undertaken to estimate the effects of eliminating mercury removal on the melter offgas system performance. A homogeneous gas-phase oxidation model and an aqueous phase model were developed to study the speciation of mercury in the DWPF melter offgas system. The model was calibrated against available experimental data and then applied to DWPF conditions. The gas-phase model predicted the Hg{sub 2}{sup 2-}/Hg{sup 2+} ratio accurately, but some un-oxidized Hg{sup 0} remained. The aqueous model, with the addition of less than 1 mM Cl{sub 2} showed that this remaining Hg{sup 0} would be oxidized such that the final Hg{sub 2}{sup 2+}/Hg{sup 2+} ratios matched the experimental data. The results of applying the model to DWPF show that due to excessive shortage of chloride, only 6% of

  20. Are We Under-Estimating Mercury in Soils? Experimental Acidification and Sample Collection Timing Demonstrate Variability in Estimates of Mercury in O-Horizon Soils at a Maine Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, S. J.; Johnson, K. B.

    2009-12-01

    Sampling protocols, including sample timing, collection methods, preservation, and preparation, can strongly influence the results of any analysis. Organic soil horizons are a large pool of mercury (Hg) in most temperate, forested sites; minimizing the potential for under- or over- estimates in this medium is critical for discerning the fate and transport of Hg. Detailed guidance is available for ultra-clean and semi-clean handling for Hg sampling in surface waters. However, neither guidance regarding the proper time of year to sample soils nor methodological studies regarding post-sampling preservation and handling were available in the scientific literature for soil Hg sampling. Here we report on pilot work that (1) provides data for Hg in soils (O-horizon) through an entire year, to determine whether seasonality affects Hg estimates; and (2) documents the effect of treating a soil with acidic water prior to preparation and analysis. We collected O-horizon soil samples monthly from a single plot during 2008, and analyzed them for total Hg. Each month, samples were split; half were ‘control’ samples (dried then analyzed) and half were ‘acidified’ (treated with acidic (pH 2.0) ultrapure water prior to drying and analysis). We observed: (1) a three-fold range of Hg values (148-446 ppb) for the control samples (all collected within the same 2-m2 plot), varying across the twelve months in 2008 during which samples were collected; (2) differences of ~15-20% between acidified and control samples; and, (3) an apparent loss of ~100 ppb of Hg (~22%) if acidification of the dry sample was delayed a day or more. Soils collected when the antecedent period had been wet lost Hg when soils were treated with pH 2.0 solution, potentially because soluble Hg in solution could have been leached during acid treatment. This finding may help to explain why researchers have seen large pulses of Hg in streamwater flux during snowmelt. Further, our results may help to inform

  1. Regional trends in mercury distribution across the Great Lakes states, north central USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nater, Edward A.; Grigal, David F.

    1992-07-01

    CONCENTRATIONS of mercury in the environment are increasing as a result of human activities, notably fossil-fuel burning and incineration of municipal wastes. Increasing levels of mercury in aquatic environments and consequently in fish populations are recognized as a public-health problem1,2. Enhanced mercury concentrations in lake sediments relative to pre-industrial values have also been attributed to anthropogenic pollution. It is generally assumed that atmospheric mercury deposition is dominated by global-scale processes, consequently being regionally uniform. Here, to the contrary, we report a significant gradient in concentrations and total amounts of mercury in organic litter and surface mineral soil along a transect of forested sites across the north central United States from northwestern Minnesota to eastern Michigan. This gradient is accompanied by parallel changes in wet sulphate deposition and human activity along the transect, suggesting that the regional variation in mercury content is due to deposition of anthropogenic mercury, most probably in particulate form.

  2. Hair Mercury Levels in U.S. Children and Women of Childbearing Age: Reference Range Data from NHANES 1999–2000

    PubMed Central

    McDowell, Margaret A.; Dillon, Charles F.; Osterloh, John; Bolger, P. Michael; Pellizzari, Edo; Fernando, Reshan; de Oca, Ruben Montes; Schober, Susan E.; Sinks, Thomas; Jones, Robert L.; Mahaffey, Kathryn R.

    2004-01-01

    Exposure to methyl mercury, a risk factor for neurodevelopmental toxicity, was assessed in U.S. children 1–5 years of age (n = 838) and women 16–49 years of age (n = 1,726) using hair mercury analysis during the 1999–2000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). The data are nationally representative and are based on analysis of cross-sectional data for the non-institutionalized, U.S. household population. The survey consisted of interviews conducted in participants’ homes and standardized health examinations conducted in mobile examination centers. Distributions of total hair mercury levels expressed as micrograms per gram hair Hg and the association of hair Hg levels with sociodemographic characteristics and fish consumption are reported. Geometric mean (standard error of the geometric mean) hair mercury was 0.12 μg/g (0.01 μg/g) in children, and 0.20 μg/g (0.02 μg/g) in women. Among frequent fish consumers, geometric mean hair mercury levels were 3-fold higher for women (0.38 vs. 0.11 μg/g) and 2-fold higher for children (0.16 vs. 0.08 μg/g) compared with nonconsumers. The NHANES 1999–2000 data provide population-based data on hair mercury concentrations for women and children in the United States. Hair mercury levels were associated with age and fish consumption frequency. PMID:15289161

  3. Method for fixating sludges and soils contaminated with mercury and other heavy metals

    DOEpatents

    Broderick, Thomas E.; Roth, Rachel L.; Carlson, Allan L.

    2005-06-28

    The invention relates to a method, composition and apparatus for stabilizing mercury and other heavy metals present in a particulate material such that the metals will not leach from the particulate material. The method generally involves the application of a metal reagent, a sulfur-containing compound, and the addition of oxygen to the particulate material, either through agitation, sparging or the addition of an oxygen-containing compound.

  4. Estimation and mapping of wet and dry mercury deposition across northeastern North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, E.K.; Vanarsdale, A.; Keeler, G.J.; Chalmers, A.; Poissant, L.; Kamman, N.C.; Brulotte, R.

    2005-01-01

    Whereas many ecosystem characteristics and processes influence mercury accumulation in higher trophic-level organisms, the mercury flux from the atmosphere to a lake and its watershed is a likely factor in potential risk to biota. Atmospheric deposition clearly affects mercury accumulation in soils and lake sediments. Thus, knowledge of spatial patterns in atmospheric deposition may provide information for assessing the relative risk for ecosystems to exhibit excessive biotic mercury contamination. Atmospheric mercury concentrations in aerosol, vapor, and liquid phases from four observation networks were used to estimate regional surface concentration fields. Statistical models were developed to relate sparsely measured mercury vapor and aerosol concentrations to the more commonly measured mercury concentration in precipitation. High spatial resolution deposition velocities for different phases (precipitation, cloud droplets, aerosols, and reactive gaseous mercury (RGM)) were computed using inferential models. An empirical model was developed to estimate gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) deposition. Spatial patterns of estimated total mercury deposition were complex. Generally, deposition was higher in the southwest and lower in the northeast. Elevation, land cover, and proximity to urban areas modified the general pattern. The estimated net GEM and RGM fluxes were each greater than or equal to wet deposition in many areas. Mercury assimilation by plant foliage may provide a substantial input of methyl-mercury (MeHg) to ecosystems. ?? 2005 Springer Science+Business Media, Inc.

  5. New Jersey mercury regulations

    SciTech Connect

    Elias, D.F.; Corbin, W.E.

    1996-12-31

    Mercury, or quicksilver, and its major ore cinnabar (HgS) have been known for thousands of years. Health effects from mercury such as dementia were known as early as the late 19th century ({open_quotes}mad as a hatter{close_quotes}). In the 1960`s and 1970`s, reported levels of mercury in tuna reawakened public awareness of mercury pollution. In the 1970`s, major epidemics of acute mercury poisoning were reported in Japan and Iraq. These incidents highlighted the extreme health risks, such as kidney damage, birth defects, and death, associated with severe mercury poisoning. Fetuses and young children are particularly vulnerable since mercury poisoning can damage growing neural tissues. Recently, the perception of mercury as a dangerous pollutant has been on the rise. Advisories warning the public to avoid or reduce the consumption of freshwater fish caught in specific waterbodies due to mercury contamination have been issued in numerous states. The discovery of mercury in {open_quotes}pristine{close_quotes} lakes in the United States, Canada, and Scandinavia, remote from industry and any known mercury sources, has focused attention on atmospheric emissions of mercury as potential significant sources of mercury.

  6. Effects of reservoir drawdown and refill on mercury levels in fish and other biota

    SciTech Connect

    Jagoe, C.H.; Salice, C.; Yabnochko, G.; Grasman, B.T.; Youngblood, T.

    1995-12-31

    Mercury bioavailability from contaminated sediments is controlled by methylation, related to bacterial activity and degradable organic material. These variables may be affected by large changes in water level and chemistry in a reservoir. At Par Pond, a 1,200 ha impoundment on the USDOE Savannah River Site, South Carolina, potential failure of an earthen dam prompted lowering the reservoir by 3 meters over a two month period in 1991, decreasing water volume about 70%. The reservoir was refilled over a two month period in 1995. Largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) were sampled at quarterly intervals before, during and after the drawdown. Length and weight were determined, and liver and muscle analyzed for total Hg. Hg was also measured in top level predators (alligators), forage fish, macrophytes and invertebrates. From Fall 1991 Winter 1994--5, Hg ranged from 0.05 to 2.0 ug/g wet mass in bass muscle, and was strongly related to fish size, based on about 400 fish. Condition factor rose soon after drawdown, then declined as forage populations collapsed. Using fish size as covariate, bass muscle Hg was greater in spring 1992 than all other sampling dates. However, after 3 years of drawdown, there was no overall trend in bass Hg. Forage species differed in Hg, with highest concentrations in brook silversides (0.13 {micro}g Hg/g wet mass in 2 g fish). Alligators contained up to 20 {micro}g Hg/g dry mass in liver. Refill caused inundation of terrestrial plants on exposed sediments, and microbial action associated with the decay of these may enhance Hg methylation. Experiments with caged fish are underway to measure uptake rates.

  7. Goldilocks and three factors that make mercury in fish more than just mercury deposition: sulfur, land use and climate (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bishop, K. H.; Eklöf, K.; Nilsson, M. B.; Osterwalder, S.; Åkerblom, S.

    2013-12-01

    The problem of mercury in fish is often framed as a problem created by anthropogenic emissions of mercury increasing the levels of mercury in the environment. But the methylation step that is crucial to making mercury available for bioaccumulation in the aquatic food web is influenced by more than just the concentration of mercury in the environment. Redox conditions, the quality of organic matter, and, in the case of methylation by sulfur reducing bacteria, the availability of sulfur, have all been shown to influence methylmercury concentrations in surface waters and/or mercury in the biota. This creates many possibilities for human influence on mercury bioaccumulation in freshwater fish. But it also creates possibilities for mitigating those human influences, if we can understand them. Forest harvest is one type of land use with a documented human influence on mercury levels in fish. Atmospheric deposition of sulfur is another potential influence on the mercury cycle, as is warming of the climate. Some for the possibilities for controlling the mercury problem may be overlooked by too much focus on mercury deposition and concentrations of total mercury in the landscape relative to these other factors. A range of field studies in FennoScandia published over the last 15 years were analyzed to explore the relative contribution of these different anthropogenic factors on the cycling of mercury. The studies included synoptic surveys across gradients of atmospheric deposition and land use (clear felling, site preparation and stump harvest) in relation to either fish mercury, sediment mercury, peat methylation potential or methylmercury concentrations in water. Long-term field manipulations (6-15 years) of land use (forest harvest) or combinations of sulphur deposition, nitrogen deposition and well greenhouse warming on peatland were also studied. The results suggest that the variation of total mercury in soils or water is less important than several of the other factors

  8. Behavior of mercury, lead, cesium, and uranyl ions on four SRS soils

    SciTech Connect

    Bibler, J.P.; Marson, D.B.

    1992-03-20

    Samples of four Savannah River Site (SRS) soils were tested for sorption behavior with Hg[sup 2+], Pb[sup 2+], UO[sub 2][sup 2+], and Cs[sup +] ions. The purpose of the study was to determine the selectivity of the different soils for these ions alone and in the presence of the competing cations, H[sup +] and Ca[sup 2+]. Distribution constants, Kd's, for the test ions in various solutions have been determined for the four soils. In general, sorption by all of the soils appeared to be more complex than a simple ion exchange or adsorption process. In particular, the presence of organic matter in soil increased the capacity of the soil due to its chelating ability. Similar soils did not react similarly toward each metal cation.

  9. Behavior of mercury, lead, cesium, and uranyl ions on four SRS soils

    SciTech Connect

    Bibler, J.P.; Marson, D.B.

    1992-03-20

    Samples of four Savannah River Site (SRS) soils were tested for sorption behavior with Hg{sup 2+}, Pb{sup 2+}, UO{sub 2}{sup 2+}, and Cs{sup +} ions. The purpose of the study was to determine the selectivity of the different soils for these ions alone and in the presence of the competing cations, H{sup +} and Ca{sup 2+}. Distribution constants, Kd`s, for the test ions in various solutions have been determined for the four soils. In general, sorption by all of the soils appeared to be more complex than a simple ion exchange or adsorption process. In particular, the presence of organic matter in soil increased the capacity of the soil due to its chelating ability. Similar soils did not react similarly toward each metal cation.

  10. Relationship between Blood Mercury Level and Risk of Cardiovascular Diseases: Results from the Fourth Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES IV) 2008–2009

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Young-Nam; Kim, Young A; Yang, Ae-Ri; Lee, Bog-Hieu

    2014-01-01

    Limited epidemiologic data is available regarding the cardiovascular effects of mercury exposure. The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between mercury exposure from fish consumption and cardiovascular disease in a nationally representative sample of Korean adults using the Fourth Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES IV 2008~2009). Survey logistic regression models accounting for the complex sampling were used to estimate the odds ratios (OR) adjusted for fish consumption frequency, age, education, individual annual income, household annual income, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), alcohol consumption status, and smoking status. The mean blood mercury level in the population was 5.44 μg/L. Trends toward increased blood mercury levels were seen for increased education level (P=0.0011), BMI (P<0.0001), WC (P<0.0001), and fish (i.e., anchovy) consumption frequency (P=0.0007). The unadjusted OR for hypertension in the highest blood mercury quartile was 1.450 [95% confidential interval (CI): 1.106~1.901] times higher than that of the lowest quartile. The fish consumption-adjusted OR for hypertension in the highest blood mercury quartile was 1.550 (95% CI: 1.131~2.123) times higher than that of the lowest quartile, and the OR for myocardial infarction or angina in the highest blood mercury quartile was 3.334 (95% CI: 1.338~8.308) times higher than that of the lowest quartile. No associations were observed between blood mercury levels and stroke. These findings suggest that mercury in the blood may be associated with an increased risk of hypertension and myocardial infarction or angina in the general Korean population. PMID:25580399

  11. Sources of Mercury to East Fork Poplar Creek Downstream from the Y-12 National Security Complex: Inventories and Export Rates

    SciTech Connect

    Southworth, George R; Greeley Jr, Mark Stephen; Peterson, Mark J; Lowe, Kenneth Alan; Ketelle, Richard H; Floyd, Stephanie B

    2010-02-01

    East Fork Poplar Creek (EFPC) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, has been heavily contaminated with mercury (also referred to as Hg) since the 1950s as a result of historical activities at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Y-12 National Security Complex (formerly the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant and hereinafter referred to as Y-12). During the period from 1950 to 1963, spills and leaks of elemental mercury (Hg{sup 0}) contaminated soil, building foundations, and subsurface drainage pathways at the site, while intentional discharges of mercury-laden wastewater added 100 metric tons of mercury directly to the creek (Turner and Southworth 1999). The inventory of mercury estimated to be lost to soil and rock within the facility was 194 metric tons, with another estimated 70 metric tons deposited in floodplain soils along the 25 km length of EFPC (Turner and Southworth 1999). Remedial actions within the facility reduced mercury concentrations in EFPC water at the Y-12 boundary from > 2500 ng/L to about 600 ng/L by 1999 (Southworth et al. 2000). Further actions have reduced average total mercury concentration at that site to {approx}300 ng/L (2009 RER). Additional source control measures planned for future implementation within the facility include sediment/soil removal, storm drain relining, and restriction of rainfall infiltration within mercury-contaminated areas. Recent plans to demolish contaminated buildings within the former mercury-use areas provide an opportunity to reconstruct the storm drain system to prevent the entry of mercury-contaminated water into the flow of EFPC. Such actions have the potential to reduce mercury inputs from the industrial complex by perhaps as much as another 80%. The transformation and bioaccumulation of mercury in the EFPC ecosystem has been a perplexing subject since intensive investigation of the issue began in the mid 1980s. Although EFPC was highly contaminated with mercury (waterborne mercury exceeded background levels by 1000-fold, mercury in

  12. Soil properties discriminating Araucaria forests with different disturbance levels.

    PubMed

    Bertini, Simone Cristina Braga; Azevedo, Lucas Carvalho Basilio; Stromberger, Mary E; Cardoso, Elke Jurandy Bran Nogueira

    2015-04-01

    Soil biological, chemical, and physical properties can be important for monitoring soil quality under one of the most spectacular vegetation formation on Atlantic Forest Biome, the Araucaria Forest. Our aim was to identify a set of soil variables capable of discriminating between disturbed, reforested, and native Araucaria forest soils such that these variables could be used to monitor forest recovery and maintenance. Soil samples were collected at dry and rainy season under the three forest types in two state parks at São Paulo State, Brazil. Soil biological, chemical, and physical properties were evaluated to verify their potential to differentiate the forest types, and discriminant analysis was performed to identify the variables that most contribute to the differentiation. Most of physical and chemical variables were sensitive to forest disturbance level, but few biological variables were significantly different when comparing native, reforested, and disturbed forests. Despite more than 20 years following reforestation, the reforested soils were chemically and biologically distinct from native and disturbed forest soils, mainly because of the greater acidity and Al3+ content of reforested soil. Disturbed soils, in contrast, were coarser in texture and contained greater concentrations of extractable P. Although biological properties are generally highly sensitive to disturbance and amelioration efforts, the most important soil variables to discriminate forest types in both seasons included Al3+, Mg2+, P, and sand, and only one microbial attribute: the NO2- oxidizers. Therefore, these five variables were the best candidates, of the variables we employed, for monitoring Araucaria forest disturbance and recovery. PMID:25792021

  13. Visually assessing the level of development and soil surface stability of cyanobacterially dominated biological soil crusts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.; Phillips, S.L.; Witwicki, D.L.; Miller, M.E.

    2008-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are an integral part of dryland ecosystems and often included in long-term ecological monitoring programs. Estimating moss and lichen cover is fairly easy and non-destructive, but documenting cyanobacterial level of development (LOD) is more difficult. It requires sample collection for laboratory analysis, which causes soil surface disturbance. Assessing soil surface stability also requires surface disturbance. Here we present a visual technique to assess cyanobacterial LOD and soil surface stability. We define six development levels of cyanobacterially dominated soils based on soil surface darkness. We sampled chlorophyll a concentrations (the most common way of assessing cyanobacterial biomass), exopolysaccharide concentrations, and soil surface aggregate stability from representative areas of each LOD class. We found that, in the laboratory and field, LOD classes were effective at predicting chlorophyll a soil concentrations (R2=68-81%), exopolysaccharide concentrations (R2=71%), and soil aggregate stability (R2=77%). We took representative photos of these classes to construct a field guide. We then tested the ability of field crews to distinguish these classes and found this technique was highly repeatable among observers. We also discuss how to adjust this index for the different types of BSCs found in various dryland regions.

  14. Bioconcentration of mercury by mushroom Xerocomus chrysenteron from the spatially distinct locations: levels, possible intake and safety.

    PubMed

    Dryżałowska, Anna; Falandysz, Jerzy

    2014-09-01

    Concentrations of mercury were determined in specimens of Red Cracking Bolete (Xerocomus chrysenteron) (Bull.) Quél. and overlying soil (0-10cm) collected from 22 spatially distributed sites in Poland during 1996-2013 to assess the potential of this species to bioconcentrate Hg and possible intake by humans. The mean Hg concentrations ranged from 80 to 630 for caps and from 28 to 380ng/g dry matter (dm) for stipes. Decrease in the potential of this mushroom species to bioconcentrate Hg both in caps and stipes was observed when the Hg content in soil substratum increased from 15 to 75-94ng/g dm. A maximum median value for bioconcentration factor (BCF) of Hg determined for caps was 18 for soil with Hg content at 15ng/g dm and decreased to 0.97-3.8 for soils that contained Hg at 37-94ng/g dm. Caps of X. chrysenteron consumed at a volume of 300g daily in a week can yield an exposure amount of Hg at 0.0168-0.1323mg (0.00024 to 0.00189mg/kg body mass); these values are well below the provisionally tolerated weekly intake (PTWI) for inorganic Hg. PMID:24927386

  15. Concentration and spatial variability of mercury and other heavy metals in surface soil samples of periurban waste mine tailing along a transect in the Almadén mining district (Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bueno, P. Conde; Bellido, E.; Rubí, J. A. Martín; Ballesta, R. Jiménez

    2009-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is one of the elements with increasing environmental significance. A total of 22 samples (soils, rocks and gels) were collected along a 6 km transect around the Valdeazogues River valley in the southwest of the Iberian Peninsula (Almadén, Spain). Samples were characterized by different soil types of depositional sequences associated with mining tailings, type and system tracts: 15 surface soil samples included in the transect; 3 of a Haploxerept soil profile developed on slates; 2 of quartzite and slates rocks (reference rocks in the area). Moreover, two of a gel substance (in the lower tract of the river). Soil samples were analyzed for Hg, Cu, Ni, Cr, V, Pb, Cd and As, as well as for organic matter, pH abrasion and calcium carbonate content. All samples were collected from the Almadén mining district. The level of occurrence of the elements (especially Hg) and the effect of some properties on its concentration distributions were investigated. The total mercury contents varied in the range 7,315-3.44 mg kg-1. The mean concentration of total mercury in soils and rocks was 477.03 mg kg-1dry mass. This value is very high compared to the regional background value of other areas. Only rarely is it higher than 1%: in one sample (7,315 mg kg-1) it was almost eight times in comparison with the affected zones, with a high value of 1,000 mg kg-1. Significant differences between samples were found in the total content of mercury. A large percentage of the samples registered detectable levels of V, Cr, Ni, Pb, As and Cu. Cd readings were below the detectable range for all samples tested. Cr mean concentration was 216.95 mg kg-1 (minimun concentration 86, maximun 358); V mean concentration was 119.09 mg kg-1 (minimun concentration 69, maximun 1,209); As mean concentration was 51.24 mg kg-1 (minimun 13.3 and maximun 319.4); Ni mean concentration was 45.64 mg kg-1 (minimun concentration 21.2 and maximun 125.6); Cu mean concentration was 33.25 mg kg-1 (minimun

  16. A possible approach for setting a mercury risk-based action level based on tribal fish ingestion rates.

    PubMed

    Harper, Barbara L; Harris, Stuart G

    2008-05-01

    Risks from mercury and other contaminants in fish for a large Columbia River dataset are evaluated in this paper for a range of consumption rates. Extensive ethnohistorical, nutritional, recent ethnographic surveys, and other documentation was reviewed to confirm previous determinations that the traditional subsistence fish consumption rate is 500 pounds per capita annually, or 620 g per day (gpd). Lower comtemporary consumption rates for other population subsets are also discussed. The causes of the current suppression of fish consumption are discussed and the cultural, educational, social, and trade and economic impacts of the loss of fish are considered. Action levels for mercury for riverine Tribes in the Columbia Basin are suggested at 0.1 ppm or less based on the combined risk from mercury plus other contaminants, the higher fish consumption rates, the existing cultural deficit due to loss of salmon and other stressors, the health benefits of fish, and the cultural and economic importance of fish. The goal of fish advisories is to reduce fish consumption even further, which shifts the burden of avoiding risk to the very people who already bear the burdens of contaminant exposure, socio-economic impacts and cultural loss. However, because Tribal communities often do not have the choice of giving up more food, income, religion, culture, and heritage in order to avoid contamination, they are forced into choosing between culture and health. Many tribal members choose to incur chemical risk rather than giving up their culture and religion. We believe that lowering the action level for mercury is part of the federal fiduciary responsibility to American Indian Tribes. PMID:17631290

  17. Inhibition of mercury release from forest soil by high atmospheric deposition of Ca²⁺ and SO₄²⁻.

    PubMed

    Luo, Yao; Duan, Lei; Xu, Guangyi; Hao, Jiming

    2015-09-01

    As one of the most important natural mercury (Hg) sources, soil release (emission to the atmosphere or leaching to soil water) depends on various factors, some of which can be affected by atmospheric deposition. We studied the effect of flue gas desulfurization gypsum (FGDG) addition on soil Hg release in a Masson pine (Pinus massoniana) forest in southwestern China. FGDG addition simulated atmospheric deposition of Ca(2+), SO4(2-) and Hg, which are commonly high in China. Results showed that Hg concentration in soil water decreased with the gypsum treatment, suggesting that the mobility of Hg in mineral soil was reduced. Moreover, the application of gypsum also seems to have decreased Hg emission from the soil, shown by the lower Hg contents in leaf tissues of ground vegetation in the treated plots than in the reference. Both Hg mobility in the soil and Hg emission to the atmosphere were decreased despite the additional Hg input from FGDG. The decreased DOC concentration in soil water and the elevated organic sulfur content in the soil Oe & Oa horizons were speculated to result in an enhanced capacity of surface soil to bind Hg, and thus to reduce Hg release from the soil. However, with the increasingly stringent control of particulate matter (PM) and sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions in China, the deposition of Ca(2+) and SO4(2-) is expected to decrease, and their ability to inhibit soil Hg release is likely to decline in the future. PMID:25935601

  18. Mercury accumulation in bats near hydroelectric reservoirs in Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Syaripuddin, Khairunnisa; Kumar, Anjali; Sing, Kong-Wah; Halim, Muhammad-Rasul Abdullah; Nursyereen, Muhammad-Nasir; Wilson, John-James

    2014-09-01

    In large man-made reservoirs such as those resulting from hydroelectric dam construction, bacteria transform the relatively harmless inorganic mercury naturally present in soil and the submerged plant matter into toxic methylmercury. Methylmercury then enters food webs and can accumulate in organisms at higher trophic levels. Bats feeding on insects emerging from aquatic systems can show accumulation of mercury consumed through their insect prey. In this study, we investigated whether the concentration of mercury in the fur of insectivorous bat species was significantly higher than that in the fur of frugivorous bat species, sampled near hydroelectric reservoirs in Peninsular Malaysia. Bats were sampled at Temenggor Lake and Kenyir Lake and fur samples from the most abundant genera of the two feeding guilds-insectivorous (Hipposideros and Rhinolophus) and frugivorous (Cynopterus and Megaerops) were collected for mercury analysis. We found significantly higher concentrations of total mercury in the fur of insectivorous bats. Mercury concentrations also differed significantly between insectivorous bats sampled at the two sites, with bats from Kenyir Lake, the younger reservoir, showing higher mercury concentrations, and between the insectivorous genera, with Hipposideros bats showing higher mercury concentrations. Ten bats (H. cf. larvatus) sampled at Kenyir Lake had mercury concentrations approaching or exceeding 10 mg/kg, which is the threshold at which detrimental effects occur in humans, bats and mice. PMID:24840106

  19. Riverine source of Arctic Ocean mercury inferred from atmospheric observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Jenny A.; Jacob, Daniel J.; Soerensen, Anne L.; Amos, Helen M.; Steffen, Alexandra; Sunderland, Elsie M.

    2012-07-01

    Methylmercury is a potent neurotoxin that accumulates in aquatic food webs. Human activities, including industry and mining, have increased inorganic mercury inputs to terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Methylation of this mercury generates methylmercury, and is thus a public health concern. Marine methylmercury is a particular concern in the Arctic, where indigenous peoples rely heavily on marine-based diets. In the summer, atmospheric inorganic mercury concentrations peak in the Arctic, whereas they reach a minimum in the northern mid-latitudes. Here, we use a global three-dimensional ocean-atmosphere model to examine the cause of this Arctic summertime maximum. According to our simulations, circumpolar rivers deliver large quantities of mercury to the Arctic Ocean during summer; the subsequent evasion of this riverine mercury to the atmosphere can explain the summertime peak in atmospheric mercury levels. We infer that rivers are the dominant source of mercury to the Arctic Ocean on an annual basis. Our simulations suggest that Arctic Ocean mercury concentrations could be highly sensitive to climate-induced changes in river flow, and to increases in the mobility of mercury in soils, for example as a result of permafrost thaw and forest fires.

  20. Correlates between Feeding Ecology and Mercury Levels in Historical and Modern Arctic Foxes (Vulpes lagopus)

    PubMed Central

    Krone, Oliver; Stefanski, Volker; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Unnsteinsdóttir, Ester Rut; Hersteinsson, Páll; Schares, Gereon; Doronina, Lilia; Goltsman, Mikhail; Greenwood, Alex D.

    2013-01-01

    Changes in concentration of pollutants and pathogen distribution can vary among ecotypes (e.g. marine versus terrestrial food resources). This may have important implications for the animals that reside within them. We examined 1) canid pathogen presence in an endangered arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) population and 2) relative total mercury (THg) level as a function of ecotype (‘coastal’ or ‘inland’) for arctic foxes to test whether the presence of pathogens or heavy metal concentration correlate with population health. The Bering Sea populations on Bering and Mednyi Islands were compared to Icelandic arctic fox populations with respect to inland and coastal ecotypes. Serological and DNA based pathogen screening techniques were used to examine arctic foxes for pathogens. THg was measured by atomic absorption spectrometry from hair samples of historical and modern collected arctic foxes and samples from their prey species (hair and internal organs). Presence of pathogens did not correlate with population decline from Mednyi Island. However, THg concentration correlated strongly with ecotype and was reflected in the THg concentrations detected in available food sources in each ecotype. The highest concentration of THg was found in ecotypes where foxes depended on marine vertebrates for food. Exclusively inland ecotypes had low THg concentrations. The results suggest that absolute exposure to heavy metals may be less important than the feeding ecology and feeding opportunities of top predators such as arctic foxes which may in turn influence population health and stability. A higher risk to wildlife of heavy metal exposure correlates with feeding strategies that rely primarily on a marine based diet. PMID:23671561

  1. Reactivity and mobility of new and old mercury deposition in a boreal forest ecosystem during the first year of the METAALICUS study

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hintelmann, H.; Harris, R.; Heyes, A.; Hurley, J.P.; Kelly, C.A.; Krabbenhoft, D.P.; Lindberg, S.; Rudd, J.W.M.; Scott, K.J.; St. Louis, V.L.

    2002-01-01

    The METAALICUS (Mercury Experiment To Assess Atmospheric Loading In Canada and the US) project is a whole ecosystem experiment designed to study the activity, mobility, and availability of atmospherically deposited mercury. To investigate the dynamics of mercury newly deposited onto a terrestrial ecosystem, an enriched stable isotope of mercury (202Hg) was sprayed onto a Boreal forest subcatchment in an experiment that allowed us, for the first time, to monitor the fate of "new" mercury in deposition and to distinguish it from native mercury historically stored in the ecosystem. Newly deposited mercury was more reactive than the native mercury with respect to volatilization and methylation pathways. Mobility through runoff was very low and strongly decreased with time because of a rapid equilibration with the large native pool of "bound" mercury. Over one season, only ???8% of the added 202Hg volatilized to the atmosphere and less than 1% appeared in runoff. Within a few months, approximately 66% of the applied 202Hg remained associated with above ground vegetation, with the rest being incorporated into soils. The fraction of 202Hg bound to vegetation was much higher than seen for native Hg (<5% vegetation), suggesting that atmospherically derived mercury enters the soil pool with a time delay, after plants senesce and decompose. The initial mobility of mercury received through small rain events or dry deposition decreased markedly in a relatively short time period, suggesting that mercury levels in terrestrial runoff may respond slowly to changes in mercury deposition rates.

  2. Measurements of Mercury Released From Solidified/Stabilized Waste Forms-FY2002

    SciTech Connect

    Mattus, C.H.

    2003-02-17

    This report covers work performed during FY 2002 in support of treatment demonstrations conducted for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Mixed Waste Focus Area (MWFA) Mercury Working Group. To comply with the requirements of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, as implemented by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), DOE must use one of the following procedures for mixed low-level radioactive wastes containing mercury at levels above 260 ppm: a retorting/roasting treatment or (if the wastes also contain organics) an incineration treatment. The recovered radioactively contaminated mercury must then be treated by an amalgamation process prior to disposal. The DOE MWFA Mercury Working Group is working with EPA to determine whether some alternative processes could be used to treat these types of waste directly, thereby avoiding a costly recovery step for DOE. In previous years, demonstrations were performed in which commercial vendors applied their technologies for the treatment of radiologically contaminated elemental mercury as well as radiologically contaminated and mercury-contaminated waste soils from Brookhaven National Laboratory. The test results for mercury release in the headspace were reported in two reports, ''Measurements of Mercury Released from Amalgams and Sulfide Compounds'' (ORNL/TM-13728) and ''Measurements of Mercury Released from Solidified/Stabilized Waste Forms'' (ORNL/TM-2001/17). The current work did not use a real waste; a surrogate sludge had been prepared and used in the testing in an effort to understand the consequences of mercury speciation on mercury release.

  3. Lead, mercury, cadmium, chromium, and arsenic levels in eggs, feathers, and tissues of Canada geese of the New Jersey Meadowlands.

    PubMed

    Tsipoura, Nellie; Burger, Joanna; Newhouse, Michael; Jeitner, Christian; Gochfeld, Michael; Mizrahi, David

    2011-08-01

    The New Jersey Meadowlands are located within the heavily urbanized New York/New Jersey Harbor Estuary and have been subject to contamination due to effluent and runoff from industry, traffic, and homes along the Hackensack River and nearby waterways. These extensive wetlands, though heavily impacted by development and pollution, support a wide array of bird and other wildlife species. Persistent contaminants may pose threats to birds in these habitats, affecting reproduction, egg hatchability, nestling survival, and neurobehavioral development. Metals of concern in the Meadowlands include arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, and mercury. These metals were analyzed in eggs, feathers, muscle, and liver of Canada geese (Branta canadensis) breeding in four wetland sites. We sampled geese collected during control culling (n=26) and collected eggs from goose nests (n=34). Levels of arsenic were below the minimum quantification level (MQL) in most samples, and cadmium and mercury were low in all tissues sampled. Chromium levels were high in feather samples. Mercury levels in eggs of Canada geese, an almost exclusively herbivorous species, were lower (mean ±SE 4.29±0.30μg/g wet weight) than in eggs of omnivorous mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), and insectivorous red-winged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) and marsh wrens (Cistothorus palustris) from the Meadowlands, consistent with trophic level differences. However, lead levels were higher in the goose eggs (161±36.7ng/g) than in the other species. Geese also had higher levels of lead in feathers (1910±386ng/g) than those seen in Meadowlands passerines. By contrast, muscle and liver lead levels were within the range reported in waterfowl elsewhere, possibly a reflection of metal sequestration in eggs and feathers. Elevated lead levels may be the result of sediment ingestion or ingestion of lead shot and sinkers. Finally, lead levels in goose liver (249±44.7ng/g) and eggs (161±36.7ng/g) may pose a risk if consumed

  4. Lead, mercury, cadmium, chromium, and arsenic levels in eggs, feathers, and tissues of Canada geese of the New Jersey Meadowlands

    SciTech Connect

    Tsipoura, Nellie; Burger, Joanna; Newhouse, Michael; Jeitner, Christian; Gochfeld, Michael; Mizrahi, David

    2011-08-15

    The New Jersey Meadowlands are located within the heavily urbanized New York/New Jersey Harbor Estuary and have been subject to contamination due to effluent and runoff from industry, traffic, and homes along the Hackensack River and nearby waterways. These extensive wetlands, though heavily impacted by development and pollution, support a wide array of bird and other wildlife species. Persistent contaminants may pose threats to birds in these habitats, affecting reproduction, egg hatchability, nestling survival, and neurobehavioral development. Metals of concern in the Meadowlands include arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, and mercury. These metals were analyzed in eggs, feathers, muscle, and liver of Canada geese (Branta canadensis) breeding in four wetland sites. We sampled geese collected during control culling (n=26) and collected eggs from goose nests (n=34). Levels of arsenic were below the minimum quantification level (MQL) in most samples, and cadmium and mercury were low in all tissues sampled. Chromium levels were high in feather samples. Mercury levels in eggs of Canada geese, an almost exclusively herbivorous species, were lower (mean {+-}SE 4.29{+-}0.30 {mu}g/g wet weight) than in eggs of omnivorous mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), and insectivorous red-winged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) and marsh wrens (Cistothorus palustris) from the Meadowlands, consistent with trophic level differences. However, lead levels were higher in the goose eggs (161{+-}36.7 ng/g) than in the other species. Geese also had higher levels of lead in feathers (1910{+-}386 ng/g) than those seen in Meadowlands passerines. By contrast, muscle and liver lead levels were within the range reported in waterfowl elsewhere, possibly a reflection of metal sequestration in eggs and feathers. Elevated lead levels may be the result of sediment ingestion or ingestion of lead shot and sinkers. Finally, lead levels in goose liver (249{+-}44.7 ng/g) and eggs (161{+-}36.7 ng/g) may pose a

  5. REVIEW OF PUBLISHED LITERATURE FOR MEASUREMENT OF MERCURY AND METHYL MERCURY LEVELS FOR FISH AND FISH-EATING BIRDS IN CARSON RIVER

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project involves conducting a literature search with the goal of identifying "robust" methods for measuring mercury concentrations in biological tissues. Mercury is a significant contaminant of concern in Region 9, due in large part to the extensive mining activities of the...

  6. Landscape influence on soil carbon and nutrient levels

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Past runoff, erosion, and management practices influence nutrient levels on the landscape. These starting levels affect future nutrient transport due to runoff, erosion, and leaching events. The purpose of this study was to examine closed-depression landscape effects on surface soil organic matter, ...

  7. Phytoremediation of Ionic and Methyl Mercury P

    SciTech Connect

    Meagher, Richard B.

    1999-06-01

    Our long-term goal is to enable highly productive plant species to extract, resist, detoxify, and/or sequester toxic heavy metal pollutants as an environmentally friendly alternative to physical remediation methods. We have focused this phytoremediation research on soil and water-borne ionic and methylmercury. Mercury pollution is a serious world-wide problem affecting the health of human and wild-life populations. Methylmercury, produced by native bacteria at mercury-contaminated wetland sites, is a particularly serious problem due to its extreme toxicity and efficient biomagnification in the food chain. We engineered several plant species (e.g., Arabidopsis, tobacco, canola, yellow poplar, rice) to express the bacterial genes, merB and/or merA, under the control of plant regulatory sequences. These transgenic plants acquired remarkable properties for mercury remediation. (1) Transgenic plants expressing merB (organomercury lyase) extract methylmercury from their growth substrate and degrade it to less toxic ionic mercury. They grow on concentrations of methylmercury that kill normal plants and accumulate low levels of ionic mercury. (2) Transgenic plants expressing merA (mercuric ion reductase) extract and electrochemically reduce toxic, reactive ionic mercury to much less toxic and volatile metallic mercury. This metal transformation is driven by the powerful photosynthetic reducing capacity of higher plants that generates excess NADPH using solar energy. MerA plants grow vigorously on levels of ionic mercury that kill control plants. Plants expressing both merB and merA degrade high levels of methylmercury and volatilize metallic mercury. These properties were shown to be genetically stable for several generations in the two plant species examined. Our work demonstrates that native trees, shrubs, and grasses can be engineered to remediate the most abundant toxic mercury pollutants. Building on these data our working hypothesis for the next grant period is that

  8. DIETARY METHYL MERCURY EXPOSURE IN AMERICAN KESTRELS; PILOT STUDY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Anthropogenic mercury emissions have increased atmospheric mercury levels about threefold since the advent of industrial activity. Atmospheric deposition is the primary source of mercury in the environment hence mercury contamination has increased in similar fashion. Methyl mercu...

  9. Sensitivity of Soil Carbon Stock Estimates in Alaska to Soil Taxonomic Level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bliss, N. B.; Maursetter, J.

    2006-12-01

    Soil carbon stock estimates will help calibrate models of soil carbon change, including fluxes of carbon between the land and the atmosphere. Warming in Alaska in the last several decades has been more rapid than global averages, and is leading to a variety of ecological changes. In particular, increased respiration of soil carbon may lead to a positive feedback for climate change by releasing carbon dioxide and methane from the land to the atmosphere. Better estimates of carbon stocks are needed to more accurately model fluxes of greenhouse gases between the land and the atmosphere. New estimates of the stocks of soil organic carbon in Alaska were made by linking spatial and field data developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service. The spatial data are from the State Soil Geographic (STATSGO) database, and the field data are from the Soil Characterization Database, also known as the pedon database. Many more sampled pedons are available now than when the original STATSGO data were compiled. Analysis of the STATSGO data alone, as distributed in 1994, provides a soil carbon stock estimate for Alaska of less than 20 petagrams. The new estimates range from 35 to 50 petagrams of soil organic carbon for Alaska, depending on the choice of methods for linking the spatial and pedon data. The higher estimates are based on linking at more generalized taxonomic levels such as soil order or suborder. The lower estimates are based on linking at more detailed soil taxonomic levels, and are likely more precise for the areas that match, but have larger areas with no match between the pedon and spatial databases. The carbon estimates are summarized by soil taxonomic unit, by regions with similar geomorphic processes, by elevation, and by land cover type.

  10. Chlorinated hydrocarbon and mercury levels in bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) found dead in British Columbia, 1988--1993

    SciTech Connect

    Elliott, J.E.; Wilson, L.K.; Norstrom, R.J.; Langelier, K.M.

    1994-12-31

    Liver samples from 70 bald eagles found dead or dying in British Columbia between 1988 and 1993 were analyzed for organochlorine and mercury levels. A subset of 11 eagles found around the Strait of Georgia, an area of known pulp mill pollution, in summer (and therefore presumably resident birds) were analyzed for polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDS) and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDFs). Levels of DDE and PCBs ranged from less than 1 mg/kg to 190 and 65 mg/kg respectively. Levels of other organochlorines were generally less than 1 mg/kg, with the exception of some chlordane-related compounds which were occasionally over 2 mg/kg. All birds analyzed for PCDDs/PCDFs contained detectable levels of the major 2,378-substituted isomers. Some birds had extremely high levels, one eagle collected near a kraft pulp mill site contained: 400 ng/kg 2378-TCDD, 1400 ng/kg 12378-PnCDD and 4400 ng/kg 123678-HxCDD. All but two eagles had > 1 mg/kg dry wt. of mercury in liver; most contained less than 1 0 mg/kg d.w. but one bird had 130 mg/kg, a level of toxicological concern. All carcasses were autopsied and cause of death determined wherever possible. The relationship between cause of death and sublethal exposure to OCs and Hg is analyzed and discussed.

  11. Mercury, cadmium and lead concentrations in different ecophysiological groups of earthworms in forest soils.

    PubMed

    Ernst, Gregor; Zimmermann, Stefan; Christie, Peter; Frey, Beat

    2008-12-01

    Bioaccumulation of Hg, Cd and Pb by eight ecophysiologically distinct earthworm species was studied in 27 polluted and uncontaminated forest soils. Lowest tissue concentrations of Hg and Cd occurred in epigeic Lumbricus rubellus and highest in endogeic Octolasion cyaneum. Soils dominated by Dendrodrilus rubidus possess a high potential of risk of Pb biomagnification for secondary predators. Bioconcentration factors (soil-earthworm) followed the sequence ranked Cd>Hg>Pb. Ordination plots of redundancy analysis were used to compare HM concentrations in earthworm tissues with soil, leaf litter and root concentrations and with soil pH and CEC. Different ecological categories of earthworms are exposed to Hg, Cd and Pb in the topsoil by atmospheric deposition and accumulate them in their bodies. Species differences in HM concentrations largely reflect differences in food selectivity and niche separation. PMID:18400348

  12. [Effect of fertilization levels on soil microorganism amount and soil enzyme activities].

    PubMed

    Wang, Wei-Ling; Du, Jun-Bo; Xu, Fu-Li; Zhang, Xiao-Hu

    2013-11-01

    Field experiments were conducted in Shangluo pharmaceutical base in Shaanxi province to study the effect of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium in different fertilization levels on Platycodon grandiflorum soil microorganism and activities of soil enzyme, using three-factor D-saturation optimal design with random block design. The results showed that N0P2K2, N2P2K0, N3P1K3 and N3P3K1 increased the amount of bacteria in 0-20 cm of soil compared with N0P0K0 by 144.34%, 39.25%, 37.17%, 53.58%, respectively. The amount of bacteria in 2040 cm of soil of N3P1K3 increased by 163.77%, N0P0K3 increased the amount of soil actinomycetes significantly by 192.11%, while other treatments had no significant effect. N2P0K2 and N3P1K3 increased the amounts of fungus significantly in 0-20 cm of soil compared with N0P0K0, increased by 35.27% and 92.21%, respectively. N3P0K0 increased the amounts of fungus significantly in 20-40 cm of soil by 165.35%, while other treatments had no significant effect. All treatments decrease soil catalase activity significantly in 0-20 cm of soil except for N2P0K2, and while N2P2K0 and NPK increased catalase activity significantly in 2040 cm of soil. Fertilization regime increased invertase activity significantly in 2040 cm of soil, and decreased phosphatase activity inordinately in 0-20 cm of soil, while increased phosphatase activity in 2040 cm of soil other than N1P3K3. N3P0K0, N0P0K3, N2P0K2, N2P2K0 and NPK increased soil urease activity significantly in 0-20 cm of soil compared with N0P0K0 by 18.22%, 14.87%,17.84%, 27.88%, 24.54%, respectively. Fertilization regime increased soil urease activity significantly in 2040 cm of soil other than N0P2K2. PMID:24558863

  13. Understanding the paradox of selenium contamination in mercury mining areas: high soil content and low accumulation in rice.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hua; Feng, Xinbin; Jiang, Chengxin; Li, Qiuhua; Liu, Yi; Gu, Chunhao; Shang, Lihai; Li, Ping; Lin, Yan; Larssen, Thorjørn

    2014-05-01

    Rice is an important source of Se for billions of people throughout the world. The Wanshan area can be categorized as a seleniferous region due to its high soil Se content, but the Se content in the rice in Wanshan is much lower than that from typical seleniferous regions with an equivalent soil Se level. To investigate why the Se bioaccumulation in Wanshan is low, we measured the soil Se speciation using a sequential partial dissolution technique. The results demonstrated that the bioavailable species only accounted for a small proportion of the total Se in the soils from Wanshan, a much lower quantity than that found in the seleniferous regions. The potential mechanisms may be associated with the existence of Hg contamination, which is likely related to the formation of an inert Hg-Se insoluble precipitate in soils in Wanshan. PMID:24531269

  14. Neurodevelopmental Effects of Low-level Prenatal Mercury Exposure From Maternal Fish Consumption in a Mediterranean Cohort: Study Rationale and Design

    PubMed Central

    Valent, Francesca; Horvat, Milena; Sofianou-Katsoulis, Aikaterini; Spiric, Zdravko; Mazej, Darja; Little, D’Anna; Prasouli, Alexia; Mariuz, Marika; Tamburlini, Giorgio; Nakou, Sheena; Barbone, Fabio

    2013-01-01

    Background Mercury is a neurotoxic environmental pollutant. However, the literature on the neurodevelopmental effect of low-level prenatal mercury exposure from maternal fish intake is inconsistent. We assessed the association between prenatal mercury exposure and infant neurodevelopment in coastal areas of 4 Mediterranean countries. Methods This was a prospective cohort study that planned to enroll approximately 1700 mother–infant pairs. Pregnant women and their newborn children were recruited in selected hospitals of the study areas. Biological samples, including maternal hair and cord blood, were collected from mothers and children, and the concentrations of mercury and other elements were measured. Exposures to lifestyle, environmental, and social factors were assessed through questionnaires. The main outcome was child neurodevelopment at 18 months, as measured by the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, Third Edition. Conclusions This cohort has a number of strengths. First, mercury concentration was measured in several biological samples, which allows for a better understanding of mercury kinetics and is useful for sensitivity analyses. Therefore, we expect to be able to adjust for the potential confounding effects of lifestyle and social factors and for the effects of other elements that were measured in the biological samples. Finally, this is a multinational study and thus permits assessment of the relation between mercury and child neurodevelopment in different populations. PMID:23269124

  15. MERCURY DEPOSITION AND LAKE QUALITY TRENDS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Watershed factors influence the differing trends in mercury residue levels. Fish mercury concentrations show positive correlations with water color, methylmercury concentrations, and plankton mercury, and negative correlations with pH and alkalinity.

  16. THE INFLUENCE OF OBESITY ON BLOOD MERCURY LEVELS FOR U.S. NON-PREGNANT ADULTS AND CHILDREN: NHANES 2007–2010

    PubMed Central

    Rothenberg, Sarah E.; Korrick, Susan A.; Fayad, Raja

    2015-01-01

    Background In animal studies obesity is associated with higher blood and tissue mercury concentrations; however human studies are lacking. Although the mechanism underlying this association is uncertain, obesity may alter the metabolism and distribution of methylmercury. Objectives We determined whether obesity influenced blood mercury levels, the majority of which was methylmercury, for U.S. non-pregnant adults (≥20 years) and children (2–19 years) after controlling for methylmercury intake through fish and shellfish consumption, and other confounders. Methods We completed secondary data analysis of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) (2007–2010) for participants who consumed fish/shellfish within 24 hours of blood collection for mercury analysis. Weighted least squares regression models related blood mercury levels (the dependent variable) to methylmercury exposure (μg) from fish consumed in the previous 24 hours, body mass index (BMI) (for adults), BMI z-scores (for children), and other confounders. Results: In adjusted models, blood mercury levels were inversely correlated with BMI for adults [β, 95% confidence interval (CI) = −0.54 (−0.90, −0.18)]. For children, blood mercury levels were inversely correlated with BMI z-scores but the trend was not significant [β (95% CI) = −0.016 (−0.066, 0.035)]. When obese adults or children were compared with those who were overweight/normal weight, blood mercury averaged 22% lower for obese adults (95% CI: −33%, −8.2%), while blood mercury did not differ significantly for obese children [β (95% CI) = −1.7% (−31%, +39%)]. Conclusions After adjusting for the main, if not exclusive, exogenous source of methylmercury exposure (through fish/shellfish intake) and other confounders, our results support potential changes in the metabolism, distribution or excretion of methylmercury with increasing BMI (for adults). PMID:25721244

  17. Mercury levels and trends (1993-2009) in bream (Abramis brama L.) and zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) from German surface waters.

    PubMed

    Lepom, Peter; Irmer, Ulrich; Wellmitz, Jörg

    2012-01-01

    Mercury concentrations have been analysed in bream (Abramis brama L.) and zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) collected at 17 freshwater sites in Germany from 1993-2009 and 1994-2009, respectively, within the German Environmental Specimen programme. Mercury concentrations in bream ranged from 21 to 881 ng g(-1) wet weight with lowest concentrations found at the reference site Lake Belau and highest in fish from the river Elbe and its tributaries. Statistical analysis revealed site-specific differences and significant decreasing temporal trends in mercury concentrations at most of the sampling sites. The decrease in mercury levels in bream was most pronounced in fish from the river Elbe and its tributary Mulde, while in fish from the river Saale mercury levels increased. Temporal trends seem to level off in recent years. Mercury concentrations in zebra mussels were much lower than those in bream according to their lower trophic position and varied by one order of magnitude from 4.1 to 42 ng g(-1) wet weight (33-336 ng g(-1) dry weight). For zebra mussels, trend analyses were performed for seven sampling sites at the rivers Saar and Elbe of which three showed significant downward trends. There was a significant correlation of the geometric mean concentrations in bream and zebra mussel over the entire study period at each sampling site (Pearson's correlation coefficient=0.892, p=0.00002). A comparison of the concentrations in bream with the environmental quality standard (EQS) of 20 ng g(-1) wet weight set for mercury in biota by the EU showed that not a single result was in compliance with this limit value, not even those from the reference site. Current mercury levels in bream from German rivers exceed the EQS by a factor 4.5-20. Thus, piscivorous top predators are still at risk of secondary poisoning by mercury exposure via the food chain. It was suggested focusing monitoring of mercury in forage fish (trophic level 3 or 4) for compliance checking with the EQS for

  18. Influences of thermal decontamination on mercury removal, soil properties, and repartitioning of coexisting heavy metals.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yu-Tuan; Hseu, Zeng-Yei; Hsi, Hsing-Cheng

    2011-08-01

    Thermal treatment is a useful tool to remove Hg from contaminated soils. However, thermal treatment may greatly alter the soil properties and cause the coexisting contaminants, especially trace metals, to transform and repartition. The metal repartitioning may increase the difficulty in the subsequent process of a treatment train approach. In this study, three Hg-contaminated soils were thermally treated to evaluate the effects of treating temperature and duration on Hg removal. Thermogravimetric analysis was performed to project the suitable heating parameters for subsequent bench-scale fixed-bed operation. Results showed that thermal decontamination at temperature>400°C successfully lowered the Hg content to<20 mg kg(-1). The organic carbon content decreased by 0.06-0.11% and the change in soil particle size was less significant, even when the soils were thermally treated to 550°C. Soil clay minerals such as kaolinite were shown to be decomposed. Aggregates were observed on the surface of soil particles after the treatment. The heavy metals tended to transform into acid-extractable, organic-matter bound, and residual forms from the Fe/Mn oxide bound form. These results suggest that thermal treatment may markedly influence the effectiveness of subsequent decontamination methods, such as acid washing or solvent extraction. PMID:21624629

  19. The Association Between Blood Mercury Levels and Risk for Overweight in a General Adult Population: Results from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

    PubMed

    Lee, Seunghyun; Yoon, Jin-Ha; Won, Jong-Uk; Lee, Wanhyung; Lee, June-Hee; Seok, Hongdeok; Kim, Yeong-Kwang; Kim, Chi-Nyon; Roh, Jaehoon

    2016-06-01

    The primary objective of this study was to estimate the association between blood mercury levels and overweight in Korean adults. We analyzed cross-sectional data from 9228 participants (4283 men and 4945 women) who completed the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES), 2007-2013. The population was divided into two groups according to the body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC). Blood mercury levels were analyzed using a gold amalgam method with a DMA-80 instrument, categorized into quartiles, and stratified by sex. After adjusting for all covariates, blood mercury was significantly associated with overweight in all subjects. According to the BMI criteria, the adjusted odds ratio of being in the highest blood mercury quartile was 1.75 (95 % confidence interval [CI], 1.53-2.01) overall, 2.09 (95 % CI, 1.71-2.55) in men, and 1.58 (95 % CI, 1.32-1.89) in women. According to the WC criteria, the adjusted odds ratio of being in the highest blood mercury quartile was 1.85 (95 % CI, 1.49-2.30) in men and 1.96 (95 % CI, 1.62-2.36) in women compared to the lowest quartile. Additionally, a trend in overweight across increasing blood mercury levels was observed by the p for trend test in the multiple diagnostic criteria. PMID:26458904

  20. Groundwater Modeling Of Mercury Pollution At A Former Mercury Cell Chlor Alkali Facility In Pavoldar, Kazakhstan

    EPA Science Inventory

    In Kazakhstan, there is a serious case of mercury pollution near the city of Pavlodar from an old mercury cell chlor-alkali plant. The soil, sediment, and water is severly contaminated with mercury and mercury compounds as a result of the industrial activity of this chemical pla...

  1. Mercury exposure, serum antinuclear/antinucleolar antibodies, and serum cytokine levels in mining populations in Amazonian Brazil: A cross-sectional study

    PubMed Central

    Gardner, Renee M.; Nyland, Jennifer F.; Silva, Ines A.; Ventura, Ana Maria; Souza, Jose Maria de; Silbergeld, Ellen K.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury is an immunotoxic substance that has been shown to induce autoimmune disease in rodent models, characterized by lymphoproliferation, overproduction of immunoglobulin (IgG and IgE), and high circulating levels of autoantibodies directed at antigens located in the nucleus (anti-nuclear autoantibodies, or ANA) or the nucleolus (anti-nucleolar autoantibodies, or ANoA). We have reported elevated levels of ANA and ANoA in human populations exposed to mercury in artisanal gold mining, though other confounding variables that may also modulate ANA/ANoA levels were not well-controlled. The goal of this study is to specifically test whether occupational and environmental conditions (other than mercury exposure) that are associated with artisanal gold mining affect the prevalence of markers of autoimmune dysfunction. We measured ANA, ANoA, and cytokine concentrations in serum and compared results from mercury-exposed artisanal gold miners to those from diamond and emerald miners working under similar conditions and with similar socioeconomic status and risks of infectious disease. Mercury-exposed gold miners had higher prevalence of detectable ANA and ANoA and higher titers of ANA and ANoA as compared to diamond and emerald miners with no occupational mercury exposure. Also, mercury-exposed gold-miners with detectable ANA or ANoA in serum had significantly higher concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β, TNF-α, and IFN-γ in serum as compared to the diamond and emerald miners. This study provides further evidence that mercury exposure may lead to autoimmune dysfunction and systemic inflammation in affected populations. PMID:20176347

  2. Survival and impact of genetically engineered Pseudomonas putida harboring mercury resistance gene in soil microcosms.

    PubMed

    Iwasaki, K; Uchiyama, H; Yagi, O

    1994-01-01

    The survival of genetically engineered and wild-type Pseudomonas putida PpY101, that contained a recombinant plasmid pSR134 conferring mercury resistance, were monitored in andosol and sand microcosms. The survival of genetically engineered and wild-type P. putida was not significantly different in andosol. The population change of the two strains was dissimilar in andosol and sand. The survival of genetically engineered and wild-type P. putida strains was affected by the water content of andosol, and increased with the increment of the water content. The impact of the addition of genetically engineered and wild-type P. putida strains on indigenous bacteria and fungi was examined. Inoculation of both strains had no apparent effect on the density of indigenous microorganisms. PMID:7764510

  3. Soil carbon levels in irrigated Western Corn Belt cropping systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An irrigated monoculture corn, monoculture soybean, and soybean-corn cropping systems study was initiated in 1991 on a uniform site in the Platte Valley near Shelton, Nebraska. The objective was to determine the long-term effects of these cropping systems on soil organic carbon levels. Four corn hyb...

  4. Tuna fish diet influences cat behavior. [Elevated levels of selenium and mercury in commercial tuna fish cat food

    SciTech Connect

    Houpt, K.A.; Essick, L.A.; Shaw, E.B.; Alo, D.K.; Gilmartin, J.E.; Gutenmann, W.H.; Littman, C.B.; Lisk, D.J.

    1988-01-01

    When observed in their home cages, cats fed commercial tuna fish cat food were less active, vocalized less, and spent more time on the floor and more time eating than cats fed commercial beef cat food. There were no differences in response to human handling between the two groups. There were no differences in learning ability on a two-choice point maze or in reversal learning in the same maze between beef- and tuna-fed cats. The behavior of the groups differed in a 15-min open field test only in the number of toys contacted. Cats fed the tuna had elevated tissue levels of mercury and selenium.

  5. Mercury levels in muscle of some fish species from the Dique Channel, Colombia

    SciTech Connect

    Olivero, J.; Navas, V.; Perez, A.

    1997-06-01

    Gold mining is an activity that has been increasing during the last ten years in Colombia. Most mining activities are carried out using mercury for gold amalgamation. In a recent publication we stated that in the Sur de Bolivar, the main gold mining zone in Colombia, the highest mercury concentration in hair was observed in fishermen. The Magdalena River, the largest and most important river in Colombia, receives all this contamination and carries it to the Atlantic Ocean through two means: The main river course and the Dique Channel. The Dique Channel is surrounded by many marshes, which are a major source of fish for nearly two hundred thousands people in northwestern Colombia. The goal of the present study was to determine, for the first time, the content of mercury in muscle tissue of the four most popular fish species purchased in some towns along the Dique Channel, to establish whether these concentrations fall within the WHO guidelines, and to identify those species which can be consumed with less risk. 11 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs.

  6. Zinc movement in sewage-sludge-treated soils as influenced by soil properties, irrigation water quality, and soil moisture level

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Welch, J.E.; Lund, L.J.

    1989-01-01

    A soil column study was conducted to assess the movement of Zn in sewage-sludge-amended soils. Varables investigated were soil properties, irrigation water quality, and soil moisture level. Bulk samples of the surface layer of six soil series were packed into columns, 10.2 cm in diameter and 110 cm in length. An anaerobically digested municipal sewage sludge was incorporated into the top 20 cm of each column at a rate of 300 mg ha-1. The columns were maintained at moisture levels of saturation and unsaturation and were leached with two waters of different quality. At the termination of leaching, the columns were cut open and the soil was sectioned and analyzed. Zinc movement was evaluated by mass balance accounting and correlation and regression analysis. Zinc movement in the unsaturated columns ranged from 3 to 30 cm, with a mean of 10 cm. The difference in irrigation water quality did not have an effect on Zn movement. Most of the Zn applied to the unsaturated columns remained in the sludge-amended soil layer (96.1 to 99.6%, with a mean of 98.1%). The major portion of Zn leached from the sludge-amended soil layer accumulated in the 0- to 3-cm depth (35.7 to 100%, with a mean of 73.6%). The mean final soil pH values decreased in the order: saturated columns = sludge-amended soil layer > untreated soils > unsaturated columns. Total Zn leached from the sludge-amended soil layer was correlated negatively at P = 0.001 with final pH (r = -0.85). Depth of Zn movement was correlated negatively at P = 0.001 with final pH (r = -0.91). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that the final pH accounted for 72% of the variation in the total amounts of Zn leached from the sludge-amended soil layer of the unsaturated columns and accounted for 82% of the variation in the depth of Zn movement among the unsaturated columns. A significant correlation was not found between Zn and organic carbon in soil solutions, but a negative correlation significant at P = 0.001 was found

  7. Mixing levels, the Apennine Front soil component, and compositional trends in the Apollo 15 soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Korotev, Randy L.

    1987-01-01

    New compositional data (by INAA) for 29 samples of Apollo 15 soil fractions are presented along with data for six depth intervals of the bottom half of the double drive tube at station 2 on the Apennine Front. The compositional trends in the Apollo 15 soils are discussed in terms of four techniques used to determine the important components of the regolith: graphical techniques, factor analysis, chemical analysis of individual soil particles, and mixing models. The concept of 'mixing levels' is introduced, which states that a sample of lunar regolith can be considered as a mixture on several different compositional levels (I, igneous rock types; II, local rock types; III, soils), and it is shown that most attempts at modeling lunar soils as mixtures have been directed at level II. It is argued that only four components are required to account for the variation in concentrations of lithophile elements in the Apollo 15 samples: mare basalt, KREEP basalt, green glass, and Apennine front soil (best represented by the station 2 samples).

  8. Hair mercury and urinary cadmium levels in Belgian children and their mothers within the framework of the COPHES/DEMOCOPHES projects.

    PubMed

    Pirard, Catherine; Koppen, Gudrun; De Cremer, Koen; Van Overmeire, Ilse; Govarts, Eva; Dewolf, Marie-Christine; Van De Mieroop, Els; Aerts, Dominique; Biot, Pierre; Casteleyn, Ludwine; Kolossa-Gehring, Marike; Schwedler, Gerda; Angerer, Jürgen; Koch, Holger M; Schindler, Birgit K; Castaño, Argelia; Esteban, Marta; Schoeters, Greet; Den Hond, Elly; Sepai, Ovnair; Exley, Karen; Horvat, Milena; Bloemen, Louis; Knudsen, Lisbeth E; Joas, Reinhard; Joas, Anke; Van Loco, Joris; Charlier, Corinne

    2014-02-15

    A harmonized human biomonitoring pilot study was set up within the frame of the European projects DEMOCOPHES and COPHES. In 17 European countries, biomarkers of some environmental pollutants, including urinary cadmium and hair mercury, were measured in children and their mothers in order to obtain European-wide comparison values on these chemicals. The Belgian participant population consisted in 129 school children (6-11 years) and their mothers (≤ 45 years) living in urban or rural areas of Belgium. The geometric mean levels for mercury in hair were 0.383 μg/g and 0.204 μg/g for respectively mothers and children. Cadmium in mother's and children's urine was detected at a geometric mean concentration of respectively 0.21 and 0.04 μg/l. For both biomarkers, levels measured in the mothers and their child were correlated. While the urinary cadmium levels increased with age, no trend was found for hair mercury content, except the fact that mothers hold higher levels than children. The hair mercury content increased significantly with the number of dental amalgam fillings, explaining partially the higher levels in the mothers by their higher presence rate of these amalgams compared to children. Fish or seafood consumption was the other main parameter determining the mercury levels in hair. No relationship was found between smoking status and cadmium or mercury levels, but the studied population included very few smokers. Urinary cadmium levels were higher in both mothers and children living in urban areas, while for mercury this difference was only significant for children. Our small population showed urinary cadmium and hair mercury levels lower than the health based guidelines suggested by the WHO or the JECFA (Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives). Only 1% had cadmium level slightly higher than the German HBM-I value (1 μg/l for adults), and 9% exceeded the 1 μg mercury/g hair suggested by the US EPA. PMID:24333995

  9. [Contamination and Ecological Risk Assessment of Mercury in Hengshuihu Wetland, Hebei Province].

    PubMed

    Wang, Nai-shan; Zhang, Man-yin; Cui, Li-juan; Ma, Mu-yuan; Yan, Liang; Mu, Yong-lin; Qin, Peng

    2016-05-15

    Investigation on the concentrations and the distribution characteristics of total mercury in atmosphere, water surface and soil/ sediments of Hengshuihu wetland was carried out based on a uniform set point sampling method. The geoaccumulation index and potential ecological risk index methods were simultaneously used to assess the mercury pollution in Hengshuihu wetland ecosystem. The results showed that: the total mercury content in Hengshuihu wetland atmosphere ranged from 1.0 to 5.0 ng · m⁻³, with an average of (2.9 ± 0.85) ng · m⁻³; the total mercury content in water surface ranged from 0.010 to 0.57 µg · L⁻¹, with the average value of (0.081 ± 0.053) µg · L⁻¹; the total mercury content in soil/sediment ranged from 0.001 0 to 0.058 mg · kg⁻¹, with an average of (0.027 ± 0.013) mg · kg⁻¹. The distribution features of total mercury in Hengshuihu wetland were as follows: the total mercury concentration in surface water of the shore was significantly higher than that in the center (P < 0.05), but the total mercury concentration of sediments in the center of the lake was significantly higher than that at the shore (P < 0.05); the total mercury in the soil of shore had a consistent trend with that in the atmosphere; high concentrations of total mercury pollution were accompanied by severe human activities. The geoaccumulation index showed that mercury pollution in Hengshuihu wetland was at clean level; potential ecological risk index showed mercury contamination had a low ecological risk in Hengshuihu wetland. PMID:27506028

  10. Fungal population levels in soils of commercial swine waste application sites in Mississippi and relationships to soil nutrient concentrations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Little is known of how commercial applications of animal wastes to agricultural soils affect soil microbial populations. This study was undertaken to determine whether commercial applications of liquid swine waste to pasture soils in Mississippi, USA, influence fungal population levels in soil, and...

  11. Accumulation of mercury and methylmercury by mushrooms and earthworms from forest soils.

    PubMed

    Rieder, Stephan R; Brunner, Ivano; Horvat, Milena; Jacobs, Anna; Frey, Beat

    2011-10-01

    Accumulation of total and methyl-Hg by mushrooms and earthworms was studied in thirty-four natural forest soils strongly varying in soil physico-chemical characteristics. Tissue Hg concentrations of both receptors did hardly correlate with Hg concentrations in soil. Both total and methyl-Hg concentrations in tissues were species-specific and dependent on the ecological groups of receptor. Methyl-Hg was low accounting for less than 5 and 8% of total Hg in tissues of mushrooms and earthworms, respectively, but with four times higher concentrations in earthworms than mushrooms. Total Hg concentrations in mushrooms averaged 0.96 mg Hg kg(-1) dw whereas litter decomposing mushrooms showed highest total Hg and methyl-Hg concentrations. Earthworms contained similar Hg concentrations (1.04 mg Hg kg(-1) dw) whereas endogeic earthworms accumulated highest amounts of Hg and methyl-Hg. PMID:21621314

  12. Effects of remediation train sequence on decontamination of heavy metal-contaminated soil containing mercury.

    PubMed

    Hseu, Zeng-Yei; Huang, Yu-Tuan; Hsi, Hsing-Cheng

    2014-09-01

    When a contaminated site contains pollutants including both nonvolatile metals and Hg, one single remediation technology may not satisfactorily remove all contaminants. Therefore, in this study, chemical extraction and thermal treatment were combined as a remediation train to remove heavy metals, including Hg, from contaminated soil. A 0.2 M solution of ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA) was shown to be the most effective reagent for extraction of considerable amounts of Cu, Pb, and Zn (> 50%). Hg removal was ineffective using 0.2 M EDTA, but thermogravimetric analysis suggested that heating to 550 degrees C with a heating rate of 5 degrees C/min for a duration of 1 hr appeared to be an effective approach for Hg removal. With the employment of thermal treatment, up to 99% of Hg could be removed. However executing thermal treatment prior to chemical extraction reduced the effectiveness of the subsequent EDTA extraction because nonvolatile heavy metals were immobilized in soil aggregates after the 550 degrees C treatment. The remediation train of chemical extraction followed by thermal treatment appears to remediate soils that have been contaminated by many nonvolatile heavy metals and Hg. Implications: A remediation train conjoining two or more techniques has been initialized to remove multiple metals. Better understandings of the impacts of treatment sequences, namely, which technique should be employed first on the soil properties and the decontamination efficiency, are in high demand. This study provides a strategy to remove multiple heavy metals including Hg from a contaminated soil. The interactions between thermal treatment and chemical extraction on repartitioning of heavy metals was revealed. The obtained results could offer an integrating strategy to remediate the soil contaminated with both heavy metals and volatile contaminants. PMID:25282998

  13. Styrofoam debris as a potential carrier of mercury within ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Graca, Bożena; Bełdowska, Magdalena; Wrzesień, Patrycja; Zgrundo, Aleksandra

    2014-02-01

    The present paper falls within the trend of research into interactions between various pollutants emitted anthropogenically into the environment and focuses on mercury and styrofoam debris. The study covers part of the Southern Baltic's drainage area. Apart from styrofoam and beach sand, the research involved mosses, which are bioindicators of atmospheric metal pollution. The research has shown that mercury present in the environment becomes associated with styrofoam debris. The median for mercury concentrations in virgin styrofoam samples (0.23 ng g(-1) dry weight (d.w.)) and in beach sand samples (0.69 ng g(-1) d.w.) was an order of magnitude lower than in the styrofoam debris (5.20 ng g(-1) d.w.). The highest mercury content observed in styrofoam debris (3,863 ng g(-1) d.w.) exceeded the standards for bottom sediment and soil. The binding of mercury to styrofoam debris takes place in water, and presumably also through contact with the ground. A significant role in this process was played by biotic factors, such as the presence of biofilm and abiotic ones, such as solar radiation and the transformations of mercury forms related to it. As a result, mercury content in styrofoam debris underwent seasonal changes, peaking in summertime. Furthermore, the regional changes of mercury content in the studied debris seem to reflect the pollution levels of the environment. PMID:24057963

  14. MERCURY LEVELS IN FISH FROM THE UPPER PENINSULA OF MICHIGAN (ELS SUBREGION 2B) IN RELATION TO LAKE ACIDITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The accumulation of mercury by fish and the potential human health effects of eating mercury-contaminated fish have been well documented. owever, elevated mercury concentrations