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Sample records for soil mercury levels

  1. 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.

  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.

  4. [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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  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. [Effects of Citric Acid on Activation and Methylation of Mercury in the Soils of Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone of the Three Gorges.Reservoir].

    PubMed

    Qin, Cai-qing; Liang, Li; You, Rui; Deng, Han; Wang, Ding-yong

    2015-12-01

    To investigate effects of the main component of vegetation root exudates-citric acid on activation and methylation of mercury in the soil of water-level-fluctuating zone (WLFZ) of the Three Gorges Reservoir area, simulation experiments were conducted by extracting and cultivating soil with different concentrations of citric acid. The results showed that after adding citric acid, the total mercury content in leaching solution before reaching peak were higher than that of the control, and increased with the increase of citric acid concentrations. The maximum amount of mercury complexes increased initially and then reached plateaus with the percentage against the total mercury in soil of 1.03%, 1.67%, 1.99%, 2.47%, 2.68%, 2.73% and 2.73% for different citric acid concentrations (0, 1, 2, 4, 5, 6 and 8 mmol · L⁻¹). In addition, concentrations of methylmercury ( MeHg) in soil remained stable in the first 3 hours, and then increased accompanying with the increasing rate rising with the concentration of citric acid ( besides the control group) . This result indicated that citric acid probably could promote the transformation process from inorganic mercury to MeHg in soil. which increased with the concentration of citric acid.

  9. [Effects of Citric Acid on Activation and Methylation of Mercury in the Soils of Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone of the Three Gorges.Reservoir].

    PubMed

    Qin, Cai-qing; Liang, Li; You, Rui; Deng, Han; Wang, Ding-yong

    2015-12-01

    To investigate effects of the main component of vegetation root exudates-citric acid on activation and methylation of mercury in the soil of water-level-fluctuating zone (WLFZ) of the Three Gorges Reservoir area, simulation experiments were conducted by extracting and cultivating soil with different concentrations of citric acid. The results showed that after adding citric acid, the total mercury content in leaching solution before reaching peak were higher than that of the control, and increased with the increase of citric acid concentrations. The maximum amount of mercury complexes increased initially and then reached plateaus with the percentage against the total mercury in soil of 1.03%, 1.67%, 1.99%, 2.47%, 2.68%, 2.73% and 2.73% for different citric acid concentrations (0, 1, 2, 4, 5, 6 and 8 mmol · L⁻¹). In addition, concentrations of methylmercury ( MeHg) in soil remained stable in the first 3 hours, and then increased accompanying with the increasing rate rising with the concentration of citric acid ( besides the control group) . This result indicated that citric acid probably could promote the transformation process from inorganic mercury to MeHg in soil. which increased with the concentration of citric acid. PMID:27011985

  10. 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

  11. Wildfires threaten mercury stocks in northern soils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Turetsky, M.R.; Harden, J.W.; Friedli, H.R.; Flannigan, M.; Payne, N.; Crock, J.; Radke, L.

    2006-01-01

    With climate change rapidly affecting northern forests and wetlands, mercury reserves once protected in cold, wet soils are being exposed to burning, likely triggering large releases of mercury to the atmosphere. We quantify organic soil mercury stocks and burn areas across western, boreal Canada for use in fire emission models that explore controls of burn area, consumption severity, and fuel loading on atmospheric mercury emissions. Though renowned as hotspots for the accumulation of mercury and its transformation to the toxic methylmercury, boreal wetlands might soon transition to hotspots for atmospheric mercury emissions. Estimates of circumboreal mercury emissions from this study are 15-fold greater than estimates that do not account for mercury stored in peat soils. Ongoing and projected increases in boreal wildfire activity due to climate change will increase atmospheric mercury emissions, contributing to the anthropogenic alteration of the global mercury cycle and exacerbating mercury toxicities for northern food chains. Copyright 2006 by the American Geophysical Union.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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...

  15. 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...

  16. 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.

  17. [Effect of Low Molecular Weight Organic Acids on the Chemical Speciation and Activity of Mercury in the Soils of the Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone of the Three Gorges Reservoir].

    PubMed

    You, Rui; Liang, Li; Qin, Cai-qing; Deng, Han; Wang, Ding-yong

    2016-01-15

    To investigate the effect of low molecular weight organic acids ( LMWOA) on the ability of migration and the species of mercury in the soil of the Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone of the Three Gorges Reservoir, citric acid, tartaric acid and oxalic acid were dded into the soil to conduct simulation experiments. The results showed that the percentage of exchangeable mercury increased with the increase of the concentration of citric acid, but the value declined slightly as the concentration of tartaric acid and oxalic acid increased. While all three acids elevated the bioavailability of mercury, which increased with the increase of the concentration of acids. Vhen the concentration of citric acid reached 15 mmol x L(-1), the activation effect was the best. But for oxalic acid and citric acid, 10 mmol x L(-1) was the optimal concentration. In general, the effect of three organic acids on the activation of mercury in the soil followed the trend of citric acid > tartaric acid > oxalic acid. In the soil supplemented with 15 mmol x L(-1) citric acid, the change of mercury pecies was more and more striking with the prolonged incubation, and the conversion did not stop until 14 d, at that time the stomach cid dissolved mercury increased obviously, which was mainly converted from elemental mercury.

  18. [Effect of Low Molecular Weight Organic Acids on the Chemical Speciation and Activity of Mercury in the Soils of the Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone of the Three Gorges Reservoir].

    PubMed

    You, Rui; Liang, Li; Qin, Cai-qing; Deng, Han; Wang, Ding-yong

    2016-01-15

    To investigate the effect of low molecular weight organic acids ( LMWOA) on the ability of migration and the species of mercury in the soil of the Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone of the Three Gorges Reservoir, citric acid, tartaric acid and oxalic acid were dded into the soil to conduct simulation experiments. The results showed that the percentage of exchangeable mercury increased with the increase of the concentration of citric acid, but the value declined slightly as the concentration of tartaric acid and oxalic acid increased. While all three acids elevated the bioavailability of mercury, which increased with the increase of the concentration of acids. Vhen the concentration of citric acid reached 15 mmol x L(-1), the activation effect was the best. But for oxalic acid and citric acid, 10 mmol x L(-1) was the optimal concentration. In general, the effect of three organic acids on the activation of mercury in the soil followed the trend of citric acid > tartaric acid > oxalic acid. In the soil supplemented with 15 mmol x L(-1) citric acid, the change of mercury pecies was more and more striking with the prolonged incubation, and the conversion did not stop until 14 d, at that time the stomach cid dissolved mercury increased obviously, which was mainly converted from elemental mercury. PMID:27078955

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Modelling of mercury emissions from background soils.

    PubMed

    Scholtz, M T; Van Heyst, B J; Schroeder, W H

    2003-03-20

    Emissions of volatile mercury species from natural soils are believed to be a significant contributor to the atmospheric burden of mercury, but only order-of-magnitude estimates of emissions from these sources are available. The scaling-up of mercury flux measurements to regional or global scales is confounded by a limited understanding of the physical, chemical and biochemical processes that occur in the soil, a complex environmental matrix. This study is a first step toward the development of an air-surface exchange model for mercury (known as the mercury emission model (MEM)). The objective of the study is to model the partitioning and movement of inorganic Hg(II) and Hg(0) in open field soils, and to use MEM to interpret published data on mercury emissions to the atmosphere. MEM is a multi-layered, dynamic finite-element soil and atmospheric surface-layer model that simulates the exchange of heat, moisture and mercury between soils and the atmosphere. The model includes a simple formulation of the reduction of inorganic Hg(II) to Hg(0). Good agreement was found between the meteorological dependence of observed mercury emission fluxes, and hourly modelled fluxes, and it is concluded that MEM is able to simulate well the soil and atmospheric processes influencing the emission of Hg(0) to the atmosphere. The heretofore unexplained close correlation between soil temperature and mercury emission flux is fully modelled by MEM and is attributed to the temperature dependence of the Hg(0) Henry's Law coefficient and the control of the volumetric soil-air fraction on the diffusion of Hg(0) near the surface. The observed correlation between solar radiation intensity and mercury flux, appears in part to be due to the surface-energy balance between radiation, and sensible and latent heat fluxes which determines the soil temperature. The modelled results imply that empirical correlations that are based only on flux chamber data, may not extend to the open atmosphere for all

  5. Mercury in the nation's streams: levels, trends, and implications

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wentz, Dennis A.; Brigham, Mark E.; Chasar, Lia C.; Lutz, Michelle A.; Krabbenhoft, David P.

    2014-01-01

    Mercury is a potent neurotoxin that accumulates in fish to levels of concern for human health and the health of fish-eating wildlife. Mercury contamination of fish is the primary reason for issuing fish consumption advisories, which exist in every State in the Nation. Much of the mercury originates from combustion of coal and can travel long distances in the atmosphere before being deposited. This can result in mercury-contaminated fish in areas with no obvious source of mercury pollution. Three key factors determine the level of mercury contamination in fish—the amount of inorganic mercury available to an ecosystem, the conversion of inorganic mercury to methylmercury, and the bioaccumulation of methylmercury through the food web. Inorganic mercury originates from both natural sources (such as volcanoes, geologic deposits of mercury, geothermal springs, and volatilization from the ocean) and anthropogenic sources (such as coal combustion, mining, and use of mercury in products and industrial processes). Humans have doubled the amount of inorganic mercury in the global atmosphere since pre-industrial times, with substantially greater increases occurring at locations closer to major urban areas. In aquatic ecosystems, some inorganic mercury is converted to methylmercury, the form that ultimately accumulates in fish. The rate of mercury methylation, thus the amount of methylmercury produced, varies greatly in time and space, and depends on numerous environmental factors, including temperature and the amounts of oxygen, organic matter, and sulfate that are present. Methylmercury enters aquatic food webs when it is taken up from water by algae and other microorganisms. Methylmercury concentrations increase with successively higher trophic levels in the food web—a process known as bioaccumulation. In general, fish at the top of the food web consume other fish and tend to accumulate the highest methylmercury concentrations. This report summarizes selected stream

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Determination and assessment of mercury content in calcareous soils.

    PubMed

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

    2010-01-01

    This paper provides the first available information on the determination of the total mercury content in different Mediterranean calcareous soils by thermal decomposition, amalgamation and atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Fifty-three samples from five soil use groups (natural, dry land, greenhouse, irrigated and rice farming soils) were analysed. The results show that the levels of mercury in these soils were 9.4-1585mugkg(-1). Soil organic matter and the zinc equivalent index have been related to Hg content in soils, suggesting that Cu, Ni, Zn and Hg are of a similar origin. The background level (BL), geochemical baseline concentrations (GBC) and the reference value (RV) were established from natural soils. Calculations are according to the log-normal distribution criterion. The BL, GBC and RV values obtained were 25.1, 9.8-64.3, and 64.3mugkg(-1), respectively. The BL was similar to the baseline concentration in soils obtained at Admiralty Bay (Antarctica) (24.6mugkg(-1)) and a Spanish peat bog (Galicia) (22mugkg(-1)). These data show that rice farming soils (gleyic-calcaric Fluvisols, Fluvaquents), irrigated soils (calcaric Fluvisols, Xerofluvents) and some greenhouse soils (cumulic Antrosols) presented much higher levels, indicating contamination. Hg accumulation in these soils was associated with local anthropogenic sources. PMID:20004461

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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, odorless liquid. If ... with other elements to form powders or crystals. Mercury is in many products. Metallic mercury is used ...

  14. Mercury in mercury(II)-spiked soils is highly susceptible to plant bioaccumulation.

    PubMed

    Hlodák, Michal; Urík, Martin; Matúš, Peter; Kořenková, Lucia

    2016-01-01

    Heavy metal phytotoxicity assessments usually use soluble metal compounds in spiked soils to evaluate metal bioaccumulation, growth inhibition and adverse effects on physiological parameters. However, exampling mercury phytotoxicity for barley (Hordeum vulgare) this paper highlights unsuitability of this experimental approach. Mercury(II) in spiked soils is extremely bioavailable, and there experimentally determined bioaccumulation is significantly higher compared to reported mercury bioaccumulation efficiency from soils collected from mercury-polluted areas. Our results indicate this is not affected by soil sorption capacity, thus soil ageing and formation of more stable mercuric complexes with soil fractions is necessary for reasonable metal phytotoxicity assessments.

  15. 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

  16. Mercury content in soils on the territory of Mezhdurechensk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nicolaenko, A. N.; Osipova, N. A.; Yazikov, E. G.; Matveenko, I. A.

    2016-09-01

    The geochemical features of mercury content and distribution in the zone of coal producers have been studied (Mezhdurechensk town). Mercury content in soil (30 samples) was determined by atomic absorption method using mercury analyzer PA-915+ with pyrolytic device. Mercury content in soil samples changed from 0.12 to 0.17 mg/kg, the average value being 0.057 mg/kg. Within the town territory five zones with mercury elevated concentrations in soil were distinguished. 25-year observation period showed a 2.8 time decrease in average mercury content in soil. The major contribution to soil pollution in the urban territory was made by the two factors: local and regional. The mercury content in soil is affected by the emissions from boilers operating on coal as well as coal dust from the open pits near the town.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Mercury transportation in soil via using gypsum from flue gas desulfurization unit in coal-fired power plant.

    PubMed

    Wang, Kelin; Orndorff, William; Cao, Yan; Pan, Weiping

    2013-09-01

    The mercury flux in soils was investigated, which were amended by gypsums from flue gas desulphurization (FGD) units of coal-fired power plants. Studies have been carried out in confined greenhouses using FGD gypsum treated soils. Major research focus is uptakes of mercury by plants, and emission of mercury into the atmosphere under varying application rates of FGD gypsum, simulating rainfall irrigations, soils, and plants types. Higher FGD gypsum application rates generally led to higher mercury concentrations in the soils, the increased mercury emissions into the atmosphere, and the increased mercury contents in plants (especially in roots and leaves). Soil properties and plant species can play important roles in mercury transports. Some plants, such as tall fescue, were able to prevent mercury from atmospheric emission and infiltration in the soil. Mercury concentration in the stem of plants was found to be increased and then leveled off upon increasing FGD gypsum application. However, mercury in roots and leaves was generally increased upon increasing FGD gypsum application rates. Some mercury was likely absorbed by leaves of plants from emitted mercury in the atmosphere.

  20. Thermal-treated soil for mercury removal: Soil and phytotoxicity tests

    SciTech Connect

    Roh, Y.; Edwards, N.T.; Lee, S.Y.; Stiles, C.A.; Armes, S.; Foss, J.E.

    2000-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination of soils and sediments is one of many environmental problems at the Oak Ridge Reservation, Oak Ridge, TN. Mercury-contaminated soil from the Lower East Fork Poplar Creek (LEFPC) at the Oak Ridge Reservation was treated thermally to reduce Hg concentration to a below target level (20 mg kg{sup {minus}1}) as a pilot scale thermal treatment demonstration. As a part of performance evaluation, the soil characteristics and plant growth response of the untreated and treated soil were examined. The soil treated at 350 C retained most of its original soil properties, but the soil treated at 600 C exhibited considerable changes in mineralogical composition and physicochemical characteristics. Growth and physiological response of the three plant species radish (Raphanus sativus L.), fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.), and oat (Avena sativa L.) indicated adverse effects of the thermal treatment. The addition of N fertilizer had beneficial effects in the 350 C treated soil, but had little beneficial effect in the 600 C treated soil. Some changes of soil characteristics induced by thermal treatment cannot be avoided. Soil characteristics and phytotoxicity test results strongly suggest that changes occurring following the 350 C treatment do not limit the use of the treated soil to refill the excavated site for full-scale remediation. The only problem with the 350 C treatment is that small amounts of Hg compounds (<15 mg kg{sup {minus}1}) remain in the soil and a processing cost of $45/Mg.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. In situ remediation technologies for mercury-contaminated soil

    DOE PAGES

    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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Formation of Soluble Mercury Oxide Coatings: Transformation of Elemental Mercury in Soils.

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-20

    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.

  10. Formation of Soluble Mercury Oxide Coatings: Transformation of Elemental Mercury in Soils.

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-20

    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. PMID:26389816

  11. 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.

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

    DOE PAGES

    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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Blood Mercury Levels of Zebra Finches Are Heritable: Implications for the Evolution of Mercury Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Buck, Kenton A.; Varian-Ramos, Claire W.; Cristol, Daniel A.; Swaddle, John P.

    2016-01-01

    Mercury is a ubiquitous metal contaminant that negatively impacts reproduction of wildlife and has many other sub-lethal effects. Songbirds are sensitive bioindicators of mercury toxicity and may suffer population declines as a result of mercury pollution. Current predictions of mercury accumulation and biomagnification often overlook possible genetic variation in mercury uptake and elimination within species and the potential for evolution in affected populations. We conducted a study of dietary mercury exposure in a model songbird species, maintaining a breeding population of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) on standardized diets ranging from 0.0–2.4 μg/g methylmercury. We applied a quantitative genetics approach to examine patterns of variation and heritability of mercury accumulation within dietary treatments using a method of mixed effects modeling known as the 'animal model'. Significant variation in blood mercury accumulation existed within each treatment for birds exposed at the same dietary level; moreover, this variation was highly repeatable for individuals. We observed substantial genetic variation in blood mercury accumulation for birds exposed at intermediate dietary concentrations. Taken together, this is evidence that genetic variation for factors affecting blood mercury accumulation could be acted on by selection. If similar heritability for mercury accumulation exists in wild populations, selection could result in genetic differentiation for populations in contaminated locations, with possible consequences for mercury biomagnification in food webs. PMID:27668745

  16. Electrochemically enhanced oxidation reactions in sandy soil polluted with mercury

    PubMed

    Thoming; Kliem; Ottosen

    2000-10-16

    For remediation of soils contaminated with heavy metals, the electrodialytic remediation (EDR) method is a highly relevant method, see e.g. Hansen et al. (Hansen HK, Ottosen LM, Kliem BK, Villumsen A. Electrodialytic remediation of soils polluted with Cu, Cr, Hg, Pb, and Zn. J Chem Tech Biotechnol 1997;70:67-73). During the process the heavy metals are transferred to the pore water in dissolved form or attached to colloids and move within the applied electric field. The method is found to be useful in many soil types, but has its strength in fine-grained soils. It is exactly in such soils that other remediation methods fail. Four cell experiments were made in order to investigate how relevant the method is for a more sandy soil and if it is suitable for non-ionic heavy metals such as elemental mercury. The duration was 27 days for two of the experiments and two experiments lasted 54 days, and the mercury within the soil was initially 1200-1900 mg kg(-1), of which 84% was elemental Hg. To monitor the process the pseudo-total mercury concentration was distinguished between elemental mercury and non-metallic mercury species by thermodesorption. During the electrodialytic treatment an increase of the content of non-metallic mercury occurred and a corresponding decrease of the content of elemental mercury which indicates a transformation of the latter species into any other non-metallic species. Generally, oxidation of Hg by dissolved oxygen in a solution is kinetically inhibited and thus quite slow. The redistribution of Hg was closely connected to a decrease of soil pH during the experiments. This corresponds very well to the thermodynamic calculations from which it was found that a decrease in the pH of the soil will result in an increase in the oxidation rate of elemental Hg. Results from this investigation show that the electrodialytic remediation method alone is not efficient in situations with sandy soils containing elemental mercury. As a solution for this

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Evaluation of mercury in urine as an indicator of exposure to low levels of mercury vapor.

    PubMed Central

    Tsuji, Joyce S; Williams, Pamela R D; Edwards, Melanie R; Allamneni, Krishna P; Kelsh, Michael A; Paustenbach, Dennis J; Sheehan, Patrick J

    2003-01-01

    We conducted a pooled analysis to investigate the relationship between exposure to elemental mercury in air and resulting urinary mercury levels, specifically at lower air levels relevant for environmental exposures and public health goals (i.e., < 50 microg/m3 down to 1.0 microg/m3). Ten studies reporting paired air and urine mercury data (149 samples total) met criteria for data quality and sufficiency. The log-transformed data set showed a strong correlation between mercury in air and in urine (r = 0.774), although the relationship was best fit by a series of parallel lines with different intercepts for each study R2 = 0.807). Predicted ratios of air to urine mercury levels at 50 microg/m3 air concentration ranged from 1:1 to 1:3, based on the regression line for the studies. Toward the lower end of the data set (i.e., 10 microg/m3), predicted urinary mercury levels encompassed two distinct ranges: values on the order of 20 microg/L and 30-60 microg/L. Extrapolation to 1 microg/m3 resulted in predicted urinary levels of 4-5 and 6-13 microg/L. Higher predicted levels were associated with use of static area air samplers by some studies rather than more accurate personal air samplers. Urinary mercury predictions based primarily on personal air samplers at 1 and 10 microg/m3 are consistent with reported mean (4 microg/L) and upper-bound (20 microg/L) background levels, respectively. Thus, although mercury levels in air and urine are correlated below 50 microg/m3, the impact of airborne mercury levels below 10 microg/m3 is likely to be indistinguishable from background urinary mercury levels. PMID:12676626

  4. 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

  5. Stability and bioavailability of mercury sulfide in Oak Ridge Soils

    SciTech Connect

    Han, F.; Shiyab, S.; Su, Y.; Monts, D.L.; Waggoner, C.A.; Matta, F.B.

    2007-07-01

    During the 1950's and 1960's, a large amount of elemental mercury escaped confinement and is still present in the buildings and grounds of the U.S. Department of Energy's Y-12 National Security Facility and in the Y-12 Watershed in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA. Because of the adverse effects of elemental mercury and mercury compounds upon human health, the Oak Ridge Site is engaged in an on-going effort to monitor and remediate the area. In order to more cost effectively implement those extensive remediation efforts, it is necessary now to obtain an improved understanding of the role that mercury and mercury compounds play in the Oak Ridge ecosystem. Specifically, the long-term bioavailability, stability, and mobility of mercury species in contaminated terrestrial and aquatic environments of the Oak Ridge ecosystem under a range of biogeochemical conditions are not well understood. Mercury can be expected to be present in various forms. These species can be transformed from one form into another thus bioavailability, toxicity, and mobility can change as a function of the biogeochemical conditions. The kinetics of these transformations is currently unknown. We have conducted pilot scale experiments to study the bioavailability of mercury sulfide (HgS) in Oak Ridge soils. The effects of plants and incubation time on chemical stability and bioavailability of HgS under simulated conditions of the Oak Ridge ecosystem have been examined, as has the dynamics of the dissolution of HgS by various extractants. The results show that HgS in contaminated Oak Ridge soils was still to some extent bioavailable to plants. (authors)

  6. Sources of mercury in groundwater and soils of west Gijón (Asturias, NW Spain).

    PubMed

    González-Fernández, B; Menéndez-Casares, E; Meléndez-Asensio, Mónica; Fernández-Menéndez, Susana; Ramos-Muñiz, F; Cruz-Hernández, P; González-Quirós, A

    2014-05-15

    This work aimed to determine the cause of the presence of high concentrations of mercury in several springs that exhibit a low concentration of metals in the bedrocks of their recharge areas in Gijón, NW Spain and the extent of this contamination. On the basis of geological mapping, different lithological substrata were analysed at the regional scale with the objective of establishing the base level of mercury in natural soils. The mercury content was simultaneously analysed in several water samples, and the following parameters were also determined: major anions and cations, As, Pb, δ(34)S, and δ(18)OSO4. The soils of the recharge area of the springs exhibited Hg concentrations that were higher than the base level established for sandstone at the regional level, and four of the total number of springs analysed exhibited Hg concentrations higher than 1 μg/l. In addition, the sulphate concentration exceeded the values that this type of aquifer shows in other parts of the region. A comparison between the regionally geochemical background of soils and mercury concentration in springs and soils of the study area did not exhibit a direct relationship, suggesting an anthropogenic and timely origin (most likely from industrial emissions) for this metal. The δ(34)S and δ(18)OSO4 values of dissolved sulphate from the springs with a higher Hg concentration also indicate an anthropogenic origin.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Bioremediation potential of a highly mercury resistant bacterial strain Sphingobium SA2 isolated from contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Mahbub, Khandaker Rayhan; Krishnan, Kannan; Megharaj, Mallavarapu; Naidu, Ravi

    2016-02-01

    A mercury resistant bacterial strain, SA2, was isolated from soil contaminated with mercury. The 16S rRNA gene sequence of this isolate showed 99% sequence similarity to the genera Sphingobium and Sphingomonas of α-proteobacteria group. However, the isolate formed a distinct phyletic line with the genus Sphingobium suggesting the strain belongs to Sphingobium sp. Toxicity studies indicated resistance to high levels of mercury with estimated EC50 values 4.5 mg L(-1) and 44.15 mg L(-1) and MIC values 5.1 mg L(-1) and 48.48 mg L(-1) in minimal and rich media, respectively. The strain SA2 was able to volatilize mercury by producing mercuric reductase enzyme which makes it potential candidate for remediating mercury. ICP-QQQ-MS analysis of Hg supplemented culture solutions confirmed that almost 79% mercury in the culture suspension was volatilized in 6 h. A very small amount of mercury was observed to accumulate in cell pellets which was also evident according to ESEM-EDX analysis. The mercuric reductase gene merA was amplified and sequenced. The deduced amino acid sequence demonstrated sequence homology with α-proteobacteria and Ascomycota group.

  11. Bioremediation potential of a highly mercury resistant bacterial strain Sphingobium SA2 isolated from contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Mahbub, Khandaker Rayhan; Krishnan, Kannan; Megharaj, Mallavarapu; Naidu, Ravi

    2016-02-01

    A mercury resistant bacterial strain, SA2, was isolated from soil contaminated with mercury. The 16S rRNA gene sequence of this isolate showed 99% sequence similarity to the genera Sphingobium and Sphingomonas of α-proteobacteria group. However, the isolate formed a distinct phyletic line with the genus Sphingobium suggesting the strain belongs to Sphingobium sp. Toxicity studies indicated resistance to high levels of mercury with estimated EC50 values 4.5 mg L(-1) and 44.15 mg L(-1) and MIC values 5.1 mg L(-1) and 48.48 mg L(-1) in minimal and rich media, respectively. The strain SA2 was able to volatilize mercury by producing mercuric reductase enzyme which makes it potential candidate for remediating mercury. ICP-QQQ-MS analysis of Hg supplemented culture solutions confirmed that almost 79% mercury in the culture suspension was volatilized in 6 h. A very small amount of mercury was observed to accumulate in cell pellets which was also evident according to ESEM-EDX analysis. The mercuric reductase gene merA was amplified and sequenced. The deduced amino acid sequence demonstrated sequence homology with α-proteobacteria and Ascomycota group. PMID:26378869

  12. 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)

  13. Incorporation of Decomposed Crop Straw Affects Potential Phytoavailability of Mercury in a Mining-Contaminated Farming Soil.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Huike; Zhong, Huan; Fu, Fangjing; Zeng, Zhen

    2015-08-01

    Recently, incorporation of crop straw into soils is being largely encouraged worldwide. To explore the possible influence of incorporation of decomposed crop straw on the speciation (i.e., inorganic mercury/IHg, and methylmercury/MMHg) and phytoavailability of mercury, mercury-contaminated farming soil was amended with different amounts (i.e., low, medium or high) of straw organic fertilizer (SF, mainly consisting of decomposed rice straw) or humus (HU) and incubated for a month. Potential phytoavailability of IHg, assessed by CaCl2 extraction, was significantly lower in soils amended with low/medium SF, possibly due to the immobilization effect of SF-organic matter on IHg. In contrast, phytoavailability of IHg was significantly higher in soils incorporated with high HU, possibly explained by the leaching effect of dissolved HU on soil-bound IHg. For MMHg, incorporation of medium/high HU significantly increased MMHg phytoavailability, while SF addition had little effect. Interestingly, MMHg levels in SF/HU amended soils were generally lower than that in soil receiving no amendment, probably because complexation of IHg with SF/HU organics decreased IHg availability to methylation microorganisms. Overall, current results suggested that incorporation of decomposed crop straw may have multiple effects on mercury biogeochemistry in soils, which should be considered when applying SF into mercury-contaminated farming soils. PMID:25855528

  14. Incorporation of Decomposed Crop Straw Affects Potential Phytoavailability of Mercury in a Mining-Contaminated Farming Soil.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Huike; Zhong, Huan; Fu, Fangjing; Zeng, Zhen

    2015-08-01

    Recently, incorporation of crop straw into soils is being largely encouraged worldwide. To explore the possible influence of incorporation of decomposed crop straw on the speciation (i.e., inorganic mercury/IHg, and methylmercury/MMHg) and phytoavailability of mercury, mercury-contaminated farming soil was amended with different amounts (i.e., low, medium or high) of straw organic fertilizer (SF, mainly consisting of decomposed rice straw) or humus (HU) and incubated for a month. Potential phytoavailability of IHg, assessed by CaCl2 extraction, was significantly lower in soils amended with low/medium SF, possibly due to the immobilization effect of SF-organic matter on IHg. In contrast, phytoavailability of IHg was significantly higher in soils incorporated with high HU, possibly explained by the leaching effect of dissolved HU on soil-bound IHg. For MMHg, incorporation of medium/high HU significantly increased MMHg phytoavailability, while SF addition had little effect. Interestingly, MMHg levels in SF/HU amended soils were generally lower than that in soil receiving no amendment, probably because complexation of IHg with SF/HU organics decreased IHg availability to methylation microorganisms. Overall, current results suggested that incorporation of decomposed crop straw may have multiple effects on mercury biogeochemistry in soils, which should be considered when applying SF into mercury-contaminated farming soils.

  15. Investigation of factors affecting gaseous mercury concentrations in soils.

    PubMed

    Moore, Christopher W; Castro, Mark S

    2012-03-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of soil temperature, soil moisture, redox potential (Eh) and soil organic matter (SOM) on the total gaseous mercury (TGM) concentrations in background soils. Our measurements were made in a grass field and deciduous forest at the Piney Reservoir Ambient Air Monitoring Station (PRAAMS) in Garrett County, Maryland. Three plots in each area were sampled every third week from July 2009 to June 2010 at the Oe-A soil horizon interface, the A-E soil horizon interface, and 5 and 10 cm into the E soil horizon. The mean soil TGM concentration for all depths in the forest (2.3 ± 2.2 ng m(-3)) was significantly higher than the mean soil TGM concentration in the grass field (1.5 ± 1.9 ng m(-3)). Soil TGM at all depths was most strongly and consistently correlated to soil temperature. The soil TGM concentrations were highest and most variable at the forest Oe-A soil horizon interface (4.1 ± 2.0 ng m(-3)), ranging from 1.5 to 8.4 ng m(-3). This soil horizon interface had 11 to 26% more SOM and the soil Eh was 100 to 400 mV lower than the other soil depths. Our results suggest that soil temperature, soil Eh and SOM are significant factors affecting TGM concentrations in forest soils. Future studies of TGM dynamics in background soils may benefit from closely monitoring the organic soil horizon.

  16. 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

  17. Mercury levels in high-end consumers of fish.

    PubMed Central

    Hightower, Jane M; Moore, Dan

    2003-01-01

    Consumption of food containing mercury has been identified as a health risk. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) and the National Academy of Sciences recommend keeping the whole blood mercury level < 5.0 microg/L or the hair level < 1.0 microg/g. This corresponds to a reference dose (RfD) of 0.1 microg/kg body weight per day. All patients in a 1-year period (n = 720) who came for an office visit in a private internal medicine practice in San Francisco, California, were evaluated for mercury excess using the current RfD. One hundred twenty-three patients were tested (93 females, 30 males). Of these, data were statistically analyzed for 89 subjects. Mercury levels ranged from 2.0 to 89.5 microg/L for the 89 subjects. The mean for 66 women was 15 microg/L [standard deviation (SD) = 15], and for 23 men was 13 microg/L (SD = 5); 89% had levels exceeding the RfD. Subjects consumed 30 different forms or types of fish. Swordfish had the highest correlation with mercury level. Sixty-seven patients with serial blood levels over time after stopping fish showed a decline in mercury levels; reduction was significant (p < 0.0001). A substantial fraction of patients had diets high in fish consumption; of these, a high proportion had blood mercury levels exceeding the maximum level recommended by the U.S. EPA and National Academy of Sciences. The mean level for women in this survey was 10 times that of mercury levels found in a recent population survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Some children were > 40 times the national mean. PMID:12676623

  18. 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

  19. Extractability and mobility of mercury from agricultural soils surrounding industrial and mining contaminated areas.

    PubMed

    Reis, Ana Teresa; Rodrigues, Sónia Morais; Davidson, Christine M; Pereira, Eduarda; Duarte, Armando C

    2010-12-01

    This study focussed on a comparison of the extractability of mercury in soils with two different contamination sources (a chlor-alkali plant and mining activities) and on the evaluation of the influence of specific soil properties on the behaviour of the contaminant. The method applied here did not target the identification of individual species, but instead provided information concerning the mobility of mercury species in soil. Mercury fractions were classified as mobile, semi-mobile and non-mobile. The fractionation study revealed that in all samples mercury was mainly present in the semi-mobile phase (between 63% and 97%). The highest mercury mobility (2.7 mg kg(-1)) was found in soils from the industrial area. Mining soils exhibited higher percentage of non-mobile mercury, up to 35%, due to their elevated sulfur content. Results of factor analysis indicate that the presence of mercury in the mobile phase could be related to manganese and aluminium soil contents. A positive relation between mercury in the semi-mobile fraction and the aluminium content was also observed. By contrary, organic matter and sulfur contents contributed to mercury retention in the soil matrix reducing the mobility of the metal. Despite known limitations of sequential extraction procedures, the methodology applied in this study for the fractionation of mercury in contaminated soil samples provided relevant information on mercury's relative mobility.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Mercury

    SciTech Connect

    Vilas, F.; Chapman, C.R.; Matthews, M.S.

    1988-01-01

    Papers are presented on future observations of and missions to Mercury, the photometry and polarimetry of Mercury, the surface composition of Mercury from reflectance spectrophotometry, the Goldstone radar observations of Mercury, the radar observations of Mercury, the stratigraphy and geologic history of Mercury, the geomorphology of impact craters on Mercury, and the cratering record on Mercury and the origin of impacting objects. Consideration is also given to the tectonics of Mercury, the tectonic history of Mercury, Mercury's thermal history and the generation of its magnetic field, the rotational dynamics of Mercury and the state of its core, Mercury's magnetic field and interior, the magnetosphere of Mercury, and the Mercury atmosphere. Other papers are on the present bounds on the bulk composition of Mercury and the implications for planetary formation processes, the building stones of the planets, the origin and composition of Mercury, the formation of Mercury from planetesimals, and theoretical considerations on the strange density of Mercury.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. [Characteristics of mercury exchange flux between soil and atmosphere under the snow retention and snow melting control].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Gang; Wang, Ning; Ai, Jian-Chao; Zhang, Lei; Yang, Jing; Liu, Zi-Qi

    2013-02-01

    Jiapigou gold mine, located in the upper Songhua River, was once the largest mine in China due to gold output, where gold extraction with algamation was widely applied to extract gold resulting in severe mercury pollution to ambient environmental medium. In order to study the characteristics of mercury exchange flux between soil (snow) and atmosphere under the snow retention and snow melting control, sampling sites were selected in equal distances along the slope which is situated in the typical hill-valley terrain unit. Mercury exchange flux between soil (snow) and atmosphere was determined with the method of dynamic flux chamber and in all sampling sites the atmosphere concentration from 0 to 150 cm near to the earth in the vertical direction was measured. Furthermore, the impact factors including synchronous meteorology, the surface characteristics under the snow retention and snow melting control and the mercury concentration in vertical direction were also investigated. The results are as follows: During the period of snow retention and melting the air mercury tends to gather towards valley bottom along the slope and an obvious deposit tendency process was found from air to the earth's surface under the control of thermal inversion due to the underlying surface of cold source (snow surface). However, during the period of snow melting, mercury exchange flux between the soil and atmosphere on the surface of the earth with the snow being melted demonstrates alternative deposit and release processes. As for the earth with snow covered, the deposit level of mercury exchange flux between soil and atmosphere is lower than that during the period of snow retention. The relationship between mercury exchange flux and impact factors shows that in snow retention there is a remarkable negative linear correlation between mercury exchange flux and air mercury concentration as well as between the former and the air temperature. In addition, in snow melting mercury exchange

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Mercury in the surface soil and cassava, Manihot esculenta (flesh, leaves and peel) near goldmines at Bogoso and Prestea, Ghana.

    PubMed

    Adjorlolo-Gasokpoh, A; Golow, A A; Kambo-Dorsa, J

    2012-12-01

    Mercury amalgamation is used indiscriminately in the recovery of gold by small-scale native gem winners in Ghana. Mercury is released into the environment in the form of wastewater, tailing and vapor from the roasting of amalgam to separate gold. The study looked at the levels of total mercury concentration in surface soil and cassava crop from farms located within the vicinities of Bogoso and Prestea Goldmines. The surface soil total mercury concentrations ranged between 125.29 and 352.52 μg/kg whiles cassava had between 66.60 and 195.47 μg/kg. The results showed proportionately more deposits at higher distances in 15-30 cm soil zone and less deposits at higher distances on leaves with relatively high uptake of the metal occurred at higher distances from the mines into the peels. These results suggest serious mercury pollution to the surface soil and the cassava crop but the speciation exercise showed that mercury is not in the free state, rather bound to hydroxides and organic compounds as complexes.

  16. Mercury

    MedlinePlus

    ... of the lungs Medicine to remove mercury and heavy metals from the body INORGANIC MERCURY For inorganic mercury ... Baum CR. Mercury: Heavy metals and inorganic agents. In: Shannon MW, ... Haddad and Winchester's Clinical Management of Poisoning and ...

  17. Mercury Inhibits Soil Enzyme Activity in a Lower Concentration than the Guideline Value.

    PubMed

    Mahbub, Khandaker Rayhan; Krishnan, Kannan; Megharaj, Mallavarapu; Naidu, Ravi

    2016-01-01

    Three soil types - neutral, alkaline and acidic were experimentally contaminated with nine different concentrations of inorganic mercury (0, 5, 10, 50, 100, 150, 200, 250, 300 mg/kg) to derive effective concentrations of mercury that exert toxicity on soil quality. Bioavailability of mercury in terms of water solubility was lower in acidic soil with higher organic carbon. Dehydrogenase enzyme activity and nitrification rate were chosen as indicators to assess soil quality. Inorganic mercury significantly inhibited (p < 0.001) microbial activities in the soils. The critical mercury contents (EC10) were found to be less than the available safe limits for inorganic mercury which demonstrated inadequacy of existing guideline values.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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 yet

  4. 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.

  5. [Geochemical characteristics of radon and mercury in soil gas in Lhasa, Tibet, China].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiao-Cheng; Du, Jian-Guo; Wang, Chuan-Yuan; Cao, Zhong-Quan; Yi, Li; Liu, Lei

    2007-03-01

    The geochemical characteristics of radon and mercury in soil gas in Lhasa and vicinity are investigated based on the measurements of Rn and Hg concentrations, and environmental quality for Rn and Hg in soil gas was evaluated by means of the index of geoaccumulation. The data of Rn and Hg of 1 579 sampling site indicate that the values of environmental-geochemical background of Rn and Hg are 7 634.9 Bq/m3, 41.5 ng/m3 with standard deviations of 2.7 Bq/m3, 2.2 ng/m3, respectively. The environmental quality for Rn in soil gas is better in the west and east parts of studied area, but becomes moderate pollution (level III) in the north part of the central area. Rn is derived from radioactive elements in granitic sediments in the intermountain basin and granite base, which are the major sources of pollution. The environmental quality for Hg in soil gas becomes gradually polluted from the suburban to the center of urban, and the highest pollution reaches level IV. The background of Hg in soil gas is mainly controlled by compositions of sediments, but the Hg pollution caused by human waste and religionary use of mercury.

  6. Mercury removal from contaminated soil by thermal treatment with FeCl₃ at reduced temperature.

    PubMed

    Ma, Fujun; Zhang, Qian; Xu, Duanping; Hou, Deyi; Li, Fasheng; Gu, Qingbao

    2014-12-01

    Thermal treatment has been used to remediate mercury-contaminated soils; however, existing thermal technologies use high temperatures (e.g., 600-800°C) and require high energy costs. Moreover, the treated soil is unfavorable for agricultural reuse. To address these issues, the present study developed a method for the thermal treatment of mercury-contaminated soils at a reduced temperature (400°C) by adding FeCl3. A FeCl3/Hg molar ratio of 100:1 in the soil was adopted as the optimum dosage of FeCl3 required to achieve maximum reduction of mercury. The mercury concentration in soils was successfully reduced to 0.8 mg kg(-)(1) when treated at 400°C for 60 min and the treated soil retained most of its original soil properties. FeCl3 addition during thermal treatment not only accelerated the volatilization of mercury in the easily removed fraction but also reduced the volatilization temperature of mercury in the hardly removed fraction. The adsorbable organic halogens and PCDD/Fs formed during thermal treatment with FeCl3 would not affect the soil reuse in agriculture. The thermal decontamination method reduces energy costs and leads to agricultural soil reuse, thus providing a greener and more sustainable remediation method for treating mercury-contaminated soil in future engineering applications.

  7. Economic implications of mercury exposure in the context of the global mercury treaty: Hair mercury levels and estimated lost economic productivity in selected developing countries.

    PubMed

    Trasande, Leonardo; DiGangi, Joseph; Evers, David C; Petrlik, Jindrich; Buck, David G; Šamánek, Jan; Beeler, Bjorn; Turnquist, Madeline A; Regan, Kevin

    2016-12-01

    Several developing countries have limited or no information about exposures near anthropogenic mercury sources and no studies have quantified costs of mercury pollution or economic benefits to mercury pollution prevention in these countries. In this study, we present data on mercury concentrations in human hair from subpopulations in developing countries most likely to benefit from the implementation of the Minamata Convention on Mercury. These data are then used to estimate economic costs of mercury exposure in these communities. Hair samples were collected from sites located in 15 countries. We used a linear dose-response relationship that previously identified a 0.18 IQ point decrement per part per million (ppm) increase in hair mercury, and modeled a base case scenario assuming a reference level of 1 ppm, and a second scenario assuming no reference level. We then estimated the corresponding increases in intellectual disability and lost Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALY). A total of 236 participants provided hair samples for analysis, with an estimated population at risk of mercury exposure near the 15 sites of 11,302,582. Average mercury levels were in the range of 0.48 ppm-4.60 ppm, and 61% of all participants had hair mercury concentrations greater than 1 ppm, the level that approximately corresponds to the USA EPA reference dose. An additional 1310 cases of intellectual disability attributable to mercury exposure were identified annually (4110 assuming no reference level), resulting in 16,501 lost DALYs (51,809 assuming no reference level). A total of $77.4 million in lost economic productivity was estimated assuming a 1 ppm reference level and $130 million if no reference level was used. We conclude that significant mercury exposures occur in developing and transition country communities near sources named in the Minamata Convention, and our estimates suggest that a large economic burden could be avoided by timely implementation of measures to

  8. Economic implications of mercury exposure in the context of the global mercury treaty: Hair mercury levels and estimated lost economic productivity in selected developing countries.

    PubMed

    Trasande, Leonardo; DiGangi, Joseph; Evers, David C; Petrlik, Jindrich; Buck, David G; Šamánek, Jan; Beeler, Bjorn; Turnquist, Madeline A; Regan, Kevin

    2016-12-01

    Several developing countries have limited or no information about exposures near anthropogenic mercury sources and no studies have quantified costs of mercury pollution or economic benefits to mercury pollution prevention in these countries. In this study, we present data on mercury concentrations in human hair from subpopulations in developing countries most likely to benefit from the implementation of the Minamata Convention on Mercury. These data are then used to estimate economic costs of mercury exposure in these communities. Hair samples were collected from sites located in 15 countries. We used a linear dose-response relationship that previously identified a 0.18 IQ point decrement per part per million (ppm) increase in hair mercury, and modeled a base case scenario assuming a reference level of 1 ppm, and a second scenario assuming no reference level. We then estimated the corresponding increases in intellectual disability and lost Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALY). A total of 236 participants provided hair samples for analysis, with an estimated population at risk of mercury exposure near the 15 sites of 11,302,582. Average mercury levels were in the range of 0.48 ppm-4.60 ppm, and 61% of all participants had hair mercury concentrations greater than 1 ppm, the level that approximately corresponds to the USA EPA reference dose. An additional 1310 cases of intellectual disability attributable to mercury exposure were identified annually (4110 assuming no reference level), resulting in 16,501 lost DALYs (51,809 assuming no reference level). A total of $77.4 million in lost economic productivity was estimated assuming a 1 ppm reference level and $130 million if no reference level was used. We conclude that significant mercury exposures occur in developing and transition country communities near sources named in the Minamata Convention, and our estimates suggest that a large economic burden could be avoided by timely implementation of measures to

  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.

  10. 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

  11. Total mercury and methylmercury levels in fish from hydroelectric reservoirs in Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Ikingura, J R; Akagi, H

    2003-03-20

    Total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) levels have been determined in fish species representing various tropic levels in four major hydroelectric reservoirs (Mtera, Kidatu, Hale-Pangani, Nyumba ya Mungu) located in two distinct geographical areas in Tanzania. The Mtera and Kidatu reservoirs are located along the Great Ruaha River drainage basin in the southern central part of the country while the other reservoirs are located within the Pangani River basin in the north eastern part of Tanzania. Fish mercury levels ranged from 5 to 143 microg/kg (mean 40 microg/kg wet weight) in the Mtera Reservoir, and from 7 to 119 microg/kg (mean 21 microg/kg) in the Kidatu Reservoir downstream of the Great Ruaha River. The lowest THg levels, in the range 1-10 microg/kg (mean 5 microg/kg), were found in fish from the Nyumba ya Mungu (NyM) Reservoir, which is one of the oldest reservoirs in the country. Fish mercury levels in the Pangani and Hale mini-reservoirs, downstream of the NyM Reservoir, were in the order of 3-263 microg/kg, with an average level of 21 microg/kg. These THg levels are among the lowest to be reported in freshwater fish from hydroelectric reservoirs. Approximately 56-100% of the total mercury in the fish was methylmercury. Herbivorous fish species contained lower THg levels than the piscivorous species; this was consistent with similar findings in other fish studies. In general the fish from the Tanzanian reservoirs contained very low mercury concentrations, and differed markedly from fish in hydroelectric reservoirs of similar age in temperate and other regions, which are reported to contain elevated mercury concentrations. The low levels of mercury in the fish correlated with low background concentrations of THg in sediment and flooded soil (mean 2-8 microg/kg dry weight) in the reservoir surroundings. This suggested a relatively clean reservoir environment that has not been significantly impacted by mercury contamination from natural or anthropogenic

  12. Subtask 1.17 - Subcritical Water Extraction of Mercury From Soils and Sediments

    SciTech Connect

    Steven B. Hawthorne

    1997-08-01

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) "National Sediment Quality Survey" lists the top pollutants responsible for toxicity in watersheds as 1) PCBS (polychlorinated biphenyls), 2) mercury, and 3) other organics such as PAHs polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) and pesticides. In addition, these same pollutants are major contributors to chemical pollution on U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and other contaminated sites (e.g., industrial sites and harbors). An ideal remediation method would allow cost-effective removal of both organic and mercury contamination using a single process. The Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) has demonstrated that controlling the temperature (and to a lesser extent, the pressure) of water can dramatically change its ability to extract organics and inorganic from matrices ranging from soils and sediments to waste sludges and coal. The dielectric constant of water can be changed from ca. 80 (a very polar solvent) to <5 (similar to a nonpolar organic solvent) by controlling the temperature (from ca. ambient to ca. 400oC) and pressure (from ea. 5 to 350 bar). The EERC has shown that hazardous organic pollutants such as pesticides, PAHs, and PCBS can be completely removed from soils, sludges, and sediments at temperatures (250"C) and pressures ( c 50 atrn) that are much milder than typically used for supercritical water processes (temperature > 374oC, pressure >221 atm). In addition, the process has been demonstrated to be particularly effective for samples containing very high levels of contaminants (e.g., parts per thousand). The EERC has also demonstrated that mercury can be extracted using supercritical water at much harsher conditions (400"C, and >300 atm). However, the removal of mercury from contaminated solids at the lower temperature and pressure conditions (e. g., 250"C, 50 atm) has not been investigated. If successful, this project will provide the basis for using hot/liquid water to extract both organic

  13. Mercury cycling in litter and soil in different forest types in the Adirondack region, New York, USA.

    PubMed

    Demers, Jason D; Driscoll, Charles T; Fahey, Timothy J; Yavitti, Joseph B

    2007-07-01

    The fate of mercury in decomposing leaf litter and soil is key to understanding the biogeochemistry of mercury in forested ecosystems. We quantified mercury dynamics in decomposing leaf litter and measured fluxes and pools of mercury in litterfall, throughfall, and soil in two forest types of the Adirondack region, New York, USA. The mean content of total mercury in leaf litter increased to 134% of its original mass during two years of decomposition. The accumulation pattern was seasonal, with significant increases in mercury mass during the growing season (+4.9% per month). Litterfall dominated mercury fluxes into the soil in the deciduous forest, whereas throughfall dominated fluxes into the coniferous forest. The increase in mercury mass in decomposing deciduous litter during the growing season was greater than could be accounted for by throughfall inputs during the growing season (P < 0.05), suggesting translocation of mercury from the soil to the decomposing deciduous litter. This internal recycling mechanism concentrates mercury in the organic horizons and retards transport through the soil, thereby increasing the residence time of mercury in the forest floor. A mass balance assessment suggests that the ultimate fate of mercury in the landscape depends upon forest type and associated differences in the delivery and incorporation of mercury into the soil. Our results show that incorporation of mercury into decaying leaf litter increases its residence time in the landscape and may further delay the recovery of surface waters, fish, and associated biota following control of mercury emissions to the atmosphere.

  14. Current hair mercury levels in Japanese: survey in five districts.

    PubMed

    Yasutake, Akira; Matsumoto, Miyuki; Yamaguchi, Masako; Hachiya, Noriyuki

    2003-03-01

    To understand the current Japanese hair mercury levels, we planned a survey of hair mercury among the general populations of different regions in Japan. The present paper, as the first report of the survey, summarized the results obtained in five districts, Minamata, Kumamoto, Tottori, Wakayama and Chiba. Hair samples were collected at beauty salons, barbershops and primary schools in each district with questionnaires on age, sex, amount and species of fish usually consumed, hair-dyed and artificial hair waving "permanent wave." The total mercury levels of 3686 hair samples collected were analyzed by an oxygen combustion-gold amalgamation method. The geometric mean of the total mercury concentration was significantly higher in males than in females, i.e., 2.55 microg/g and 1.43 microg/g, respectively. The sex difference was also observed on hair samples without artificial waving, i.e., 2.64 microg/g and 1.64 microg/g, respectively. The geometric mean in each district varied from 2.23 to 4.79 microg/g for males and from 1.23 to 2.50 microg/g for females. The average hair mercury levels were highest in Chiba among the five districts both in males and females. A multiple regression analysis revealed a significant correlation of the mercury level with age, sex, amount of daily fish consumption, tuna and bonito as usually consumed fish, artificial waving and Chiba as a residential area. In the laboratory experiment, we found that the treatment of hair samples with a lotion for artificial waving caused a 30%-reduction in the mercury content. Furthermore, longitudinal hair analysis showed a marked difference in the concentration between the hair root and the tip of the hair taken from artificially waved females; higher values were observed at the hair root. These results suggested that artificial waving significantly removes hair mercury and that hair analysis at the hair root should be necessary to estimate an accurate methylmercury exposure for waved persons.

  15. [Evaluation and source analysis of the mercury pollution in soils and vegetables around a large-scale zinc smelting plant].

    PubMed

    Liu, Fang; Wang, Shu-Xiao; Wu, Qing-Ru; Lin, Hai

    2013-02-01

    The farming soil and vegetable samples around a large-scale zinc smelter were collected for mercury content analyses, and the single pollution index method with relevant regulations was used to evaluate the pollution status of sampled soils and vegetables. The results indicated that the surface soil and vegetables were polluted with mercury to different extent. Of the soil samples, 78% exceeded the national standard. The mercury concentration in the most severely contaminated area was 29 times higher than the background concentration, reaching the severe pollution degree. The mercury concentration in all vegetable samples exceeded the standard of non-pollution vegetables. Mercury concentration, in the most severely polluted vegetables were 64.5 times of the standard, and averagely the mercury concentration in the vegetable samples was 25.4 times of the standard. For 85% of the vegetable samples, the mercury concentration, of leaves were significantly higher than that of roots, which implies that the mercury in leaves mainly came from the atmosphere. The mercury concentrations in vegetable roots were significantly correlated with that in soils, indicating the mercury in roots was mainly from soil. The mercury emissions from the zinc smelter have obvious impacts on the surrounding soils and vegetables. Key words:zinc smelting; mercury pollution; soil; vegetable; mercury content

  16. Accumulation of mercury and cadmium in rice from paddy soil near a mercury mine.

    PubMed

    Li, W C; Ouyang, Y; Ye, Z H

    2014-11-01

    Paddy soil and rice (Oryza sativa L.) in the Wanshan mining area in Guizhou Province, China, have been contaminated by toxic trace metals such as cadmium (Cd) and mercury (Hg). The present study examined correlations between the types and physicochemical parameters of the soil and the contents of trace metals and the different forms of Hg in rice. The health risks of consuming contaminated rice from the Wanshan mining area were also assessed. Sequential extraction procedures were used to investigate the chemical behavior of Hg in the soil. The results showed that Hg and Cd were the most abundant trace metals in the Wanshan mining area. The toxic methylmercury (MeHg) content was substantial in brown rice, and the total amounts of total Hg (THg), diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid-Hg, and water-soluble Hg varied in the rhizosphere and non-rhizosphere soils. An antagonistic interaction between Mn in brown rice, straw, and husk and MeHg in brown rice was also shown. An analysis of calculated dietary intake, target hazard quotients, and hazard indexes showed a potential risk of transferring Hg, MeHg, and Cd to humans when rice from the Wanshan mining area is consumed. Therefore, it must be concluded that consuming contaminated rice near the Wanshan mining area is a potential threat to human health.

  17. 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.

  18. Vertical variations in the concentration of mercury in soils around Sakurajima Volcano, Southern Kyushu, Japan.

    PubMed

    Tomiyasu, Takashi; Okada, Morimichi; Imura, Ryusuke; Sakamoto, Hayao

    2003-03-20

    In an effort to estimate the influence of mercury emitted from Sakurajima Volcano, Southern Kyushu, Japan, on the accumulation of mercury in soil, the vertical distribution of total mercury in soils was investigated together with organic matter content and grain size. The soils were sampled at a thickness of 1 cm from the surface to depth of 1 m at five locations on Sakurajima and two control locations, i.e. Takatoge approximately 11 km southeast and Suzuyama 22 km southwest of the volcano. The concentration in soils increased with the distance from the volcano and was 6.5+/-1.9 ngg(-1) (n=335), 29.0+/-15.6 ngg(-1) (n=100) and 229+/-105 ngg(-1) (n=103) for Sakurajima, Takatoge and Suzuyama, respectively. The concentration of mercury correlated with the amount of organic matter, but not with grain size distribution. The sedimentation rate for Sakurajima, Takatoge and Suzuyama was estimated from geological data to be approximately 1.3, 0.083 and 0.0048 cmyear(-1), respectively. The relatively fast sedimentation of Sakurajima soil was caused by the frequent precipitation of volcanic ash. The annual deposition of mercury estimated for Sakurajima, Takatoge and Suzuyama from the mercury concentration, sedimentation rate and soil density was 9 x 10(4), 3 x 10(4) and 2 x 10(4) ngm(-2)year(-1), respectively. Although the soil of Sakurajima had the lowest concentration among the three sites, it received the largest amount of mercury.

  19. Vertical variations in the concentration of mercury in soils around Sakurajima Volcano, Southern Kyushu, Japan.

    PubMed

    Tomiyasu, Takashi; Okada, Morimichi; Imura, Ryusuke; Sakamoto, Hayao

    2003-03-20

    In an effort to estimate the influence of mercury emitted from Sakurajima Volcano, Southern Kyushu, Japan, on the accumulation of mercury in soil, the vertical distribution of total mercury in soils was investigated together with organic matter content and grain size. The soils were sampled at a thickness of 1 cm from the surface to depth of 1 m at five locations on Sakurajima and two control locations, i.e. Takatoge approximately 11 km southeast and Suzuyama 22 km southwest of the volcano. The concentration in soils increased with the distance from the volcano and was 6.5+/-1.9 ngg(-1) (n=335), 29.0+/-15.6 ngg(-1) (n=100) and 229+/-105 ngg(-1) (n=103) for Sakurajima, Takatoge and Suzuyama, respectively. The concentration of mercury correlated with the amount of organic matter, but not with grain size distribution. The sedimentation rate for Sakurajima, Takatoge and Suzuyama was estimated from geological data to be approximately 1.3, 0.083 and 0.0048 cmyear(-1), respectively. The relatively fast sedimentation of Sakurajima soil was caused by the frequent precipitation of volcanic ash. The annual deposition of mercury estimated for Sakurajima, Takatoge and Suzuyama from the mercury concentration, sedimentation rate and soil density was 9 x 10(4), 3 x 10(4) and 2 x 10(4) ngm(-2)year(-1), respectively. Although the soil of Sakurajima had the lowest concentration among the three sites, it received the largest amount of mercury. PMID:12663186

  20. Canadian soil quality criteria for lead, copper, arsenic, cadmium and mercury

    SciTech Connect

    Gaudet, C.; Milne, D.; Teed, S.; Lin, J.; Raju, G.S.; Ouellet, S.

    1995-12-31

    National soil quality criteria for the protection of ecological receptors, including livestock and wildlife, are currently under development in Canada. Based on an evaluation of direct soil contact and soil and food ingestion pathways for sensitive species, soil quality criteria for lead, copper, arsenic, cadmium and mercury for three land use categories have been derived. The draft values, in mg/kg soil, for agricultural, residential/parkland, commercial/industrial land uses are: mercury, 4, 4, 30; copper, 62, 62, 100; cadmium, 10, 10, 27; lead, 70, 250, 400; arsenic, 17, 17, 26. Critical data requirements in developing soil quality criteria are also reviewed.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Soil geochemistry and digestive solubilization control mercury bioaccumulation in the earthworm Pheretima guillemi.

    PubMed

    Dang, Fei; Zhao, Jie; Greenfield, Ben K; Zhong, Huan; Wang, Yujun; Yang, Zhousheng; Zhou, Dongmei

    2015-07-15

    Mercury presents a potential risk to soil organisms, yet our understanding of mercury bioaccumulation in soil dwelling organisms is limited. The influence of soil geochemistry and digestive processes on both methylmercury (MeHg) and total mercury (THg) bioavailability to earthworms (Pheretima guillemi) was evaluated in this study. Earthworms were exposed to six mercury-contaminated soils with geochemically contrasting properties for 36 days, and digestive fluid was concurrently collected to solubilize soil-associated mercury. Bioaccumulation factors were 7.5-31.0 and 0.2-0.6 for MeHg and THg, respectively, and MeHg accounted for 17-58% of THg in earthworm. THg and MeHg measured in soils and earthworms were negatively associated with soil total organic carbon (TOC). Earthworm THg and MeHg also increased with increasing soil pH. The proportion of MeHg and THg released into the digestive fluid (digestive solubilizable mercury, DSM) was 8.3-18.1% and 0.4-1.3%, respectively. The greater solubilization of MeHg by digestive fluid than CaCl2, together with a biokinetic model-based estimate of dietary MeHg uptake, indicated the importance of soil ingestion for MeHg bioaccumulation in earthworms.

  4. [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.

  5. [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

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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).

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  11. 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

    2016-09-01

    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.

  12. 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

  13. Thermodynamic and kinetic study of the single extraction of mercury from soil using sodium-thiosulfate.

    PubMed

    Issaro, N; Besancon, S; Bermond, A

    2010-10-15

    The use of sodium-thiosulfate (Na-thiosulfate) as a reagent for the extraction of mercury (Hg) from soil was investigated. High organic matter content in soil plays a major role in retaining metals. It has previously been reported that using the cold vapour atomic absorption method, powerful reagents such as EDTA, DTPA and cysteine could not release Hg from soil samples. The optimal conditions for using Na-thiosulfate to extract soil-Hg are presented here. Our results show that 50±5% of total Hg was extracted from soil samples using 0.01molL(-1) of the reagent without pH adjustment. Increasing the reagent concentration above this level showed no significant change in Hg extraction. From this extraction three fractions of Hg were obtained, the labile, slowly labile and un-extractable. We further applied the use of a kinetic extraction approach that has never been applied for Hg. We observed a correlation between the first two fractions and the quantity of organic matter content in soils. The labile fraction could be released by using any concentration of the reagent. However, the slowly labile fraction was dependent on time and increased concentrations of Na-thiosulfate. Furthermore, our results suggest that the labile and slowly labile fractions involve two different sites of reduced sulphur groups contained in soil organic matter and Hg levels present in the soil samples did not appear high enough to saturate all these high affinity sulphur sites. The capacity of Na-thiosulfate to reduce (Hg(II)) to (Hg(0)), was determined to be negligible. Our results further suggest the implication of iron (Fe(II)) for reducing Hg(II) to Hg(0). Here we have demonstrated that Na-thiosulfate is an effective reagent in the extraction of Hg from soil, with the particular characteristic of its ability to remove strongly bound Hg from sulphur groups contained in soil organic matter.

  14. High altitude artisanal small-scale gold mines are hot spots for Mercury in soils and plants.

    PubMed

    Terán-Mita, Tania A; Faz, Angel; Salvador, Flor; Arocena, Joselito M; Acosta, Jose A

    2013-02-01

    Mercury releases from artisanal and small-scale gold mines (ASGM) condense and settle on plants, soils and water bodies. We collected soil and plant samples to add knowledge to the likely transfer of Hg from soils into plants and eventually predict Hg accumulation in livestock around ASGM in Bolivia. Mean contents of Hg in soils range from 0.5 to 48.6 mg Hg kg(-1) soil (5× to 60× more compared to control sites) and exceeded the soil Hg threshold levels in some European countries. The Hg contents ranged from 0.6 to 18 and 0.2 to 28.3 mg Hg kg(-1) leaf and root, respectively. The high Hg in Poaceae and Rosaceae may elevate Hg accumulation into the food chain because llama and alpaca solely thrive on these plants for food. Erosion of soils around ASGM in Bolivia contributes to the Hg contamination in lower reaches of the Amazon basin.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. Mercury in wild mushrooms and underlying soil substrate from the great lakes land in Poland.

    PubMed

    Falandysz, Jerzy; Bielawski, Leszek; Kannan, Kurunthachalam; Gucia, Magdalena; Lipka, Krzysztof; Brzostowski, Andrzej

    2002-08-01

    Fifteen species of wild mushrooms and underlying soil samples collected in a virgin landscape of Augustowska Forest in northeastern Poland in 1997-98 were analyzed for total mercury to evaluate the status of contamination and usefulness of higher mushrooms as possible bioindicators of mercury pollution. Among the 15 species analyzed, Pinewood King Bolete, Scaly Tooth and King Bolete showed relatively high bioconcentration factors (BCF: dry-weight normalized concentrations of mercury in mushrooms relative to concentrations in soil) for mercury, which varied between 69 and 110. These three species were also characterized by great concentrations of total mercury in caps (between 2,000 +/- 800 and 2,300 +/- 1,100 ng g-1 dry wt) and stalks (between 850 +/- 390 and 1,000 +/- 500 ng g-1 dry wt.). Species such as Red-hot Milk Cap, Poison Pax and Common Chantherelle had mercury BCFs of less than 1, while Gipsy Bolete, Orange Birch Bolete, Brown Scaber Stalk, Variegated Bolete, Sandy Knight-cap and Yellow-cracking Bolete were weak or moderate mercury accumulators with BCFs between 1 and 40. Concentrations of mercury in mushrooms were greater than the tolerance limits suggested for mercury in plant foods. PMID:12195986

  19. Comparison of mercury levels in maternal blood, fetal cord blood, and placental tissues

    SciTech Connect

    Kuhnert, P.M.; Kuhnert, B.R.; Erhard, P.

    1981-01-01

    Previous studies have reported that mercury accumulates in cord blood during pregnancy. This study was carried out to determine where in cord blood the mercury accumulates, i.e., in cord erythrocytes, in cord plasma, or in both, and to determine whether the predominant form of mercury which accumulates is methyl or inorganic mercury. From our data it is clear that methyl mercury accumulates in cord erythrocytes: A total of 30% more methyl mercury was found in fetal erythrocytes than in maternal erythrocytes. Also correlation analysis of the methyl mercury levels in maternal and fetal erythrocytes showed a strong correlation (r = 0.87). In regard to inorganic mercury, the highest concentration was found in the placenta, suggesting a barrier role, but a significant correlation (r = 0.62) was also found between the maternal and fetal plasma levels of inorganic mercury. Moreover, the inorganic mercury concentration per gram of plasma was higher in fetal cord plasma than in maternal plasma. Overall, the relative levels of methyl and inorganic mercury reported here varied considerably in maternal and fetal erythrocytes, plasma, and in the placenta, but all of the levels were low (< 6 ng Hg/gm of tissue) and in agreement with total mercury levels reported by others.

  20. 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

  1. Aqueous and Gas Phase Sorption Properties of Mercury in Burned Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jay, J.; Ferreira, M.; Burke, M.; Hogue, T.

    2008-12-01

    Wildfires are a common occurrence in the Mediterranean climate of Southern California. Many studies have focused on the post-fire physical impacts however; there is a lack of studies on the potential for post-fire metal transport, in particular mercury (Hg). Inorganic Hg contamination is present even in pristine areas due to atmospheric deposition, which can be microbially transformed to methylmercury (a bioaccumulative neurotoxin) in aquatic systems. In order to model the transport of mercury in burned soils, we need to understand the sorption properties of mercury in soils exposed to fire. To test the hypothesis that burned soils have different sorption properties than unburned ones, we have collected samples of unburned soils, and burned them in a controlled setting at different temperatures to simulate several fire intensities. Then, we applied traditional aqueous sorption techniques to determine the binding properties of mercury to each burned soil. Experimental data were fitted with FITEQL to derive constants for sorption reactions, which were in agreement with values observed in literature. Since Southern California does not receive much rain, most of the atmospheric mercury deposition is in form of dry deposition. Thus, we have designed and applied a novel sorption technique to determine the binding of mercury in the gas phase to the burned soils. Trends in sorption affinity and capacity with burning temperature are discussed, as well as a comparison between aqueous and gas phase sorption properties is made.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Green waste compost as an amendment during induced phytoextraction of mercury-contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Smolinska, Beata

    2015-03-01

    Phytoextraction of mercury-contaminated soils is a new strategy that consists of using the higher plants to make the soil contaminant nontoxic. The main problem that occurs during the process is the low solubility and bioavailability of mercury in soil. Therefore, some soil amendments can be used to increase the efficiency of the Hg phytoextraction process. The aim of the investigation was to use the commercial compost from municipal green wastes to increase the efficiency of phytoextraction of mercury-contaminated soil by Lepidium sativum L. plants and determine the leaching of Hg after compost amendment. The result of the study showed that Hg can be accumulated by L. sativum L. The application of compost increased both the accumulation by whole plant and translocation of Hg to shoots. Compost did not affect the plant biomass and its biometric parameters. Application of compost to the soil decreased the leaching of mercury in both acidic and neutral solutions regardless of growing medium composition and time of analysis. Due to Hg accumulation and translocation as well as its potential leaching in acidic and neutral solution, compost can be recommended as a soil amendment during the phytoextraction of mercury-contaminated soil.

  5. Citric acid facilitated thermal treatment: An innovative method for the remediation of mercury contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Ma, Fujun; Peng, Changsheng; Hou, Deyi; Wu, Bin; Zhang, Qian; Li, Fasheng; Gu, Qingbao

    2015-12-30

    Thermal treatment is a promising technology for the remediation of mercury contaminated soils, but it often requires high energy input at heating temperatures above 600°C, and the treated soil is not suitable for agricultural reuse. The present study developed a novel method for the thermal treatment of mercury contaminated soils with the facilitation of citric acid (CA). A CA/Hg molar ratio of 15 was adopted as the optimum dosage. The mercury concentration in soils was successfully reduced from 134 mg/kg to 1.1mg/kg when treated at 400°C for 60 min and the treated soil retained most of its original soil physiochemical properties. During the treatment process, CA was found to provide an acidic environment which enhanced the volatilization of mercury. This method is expected to reduce energy input by 35% comparing to the traditional thermal treatment method, and lead to agricultural soil reuse, thus providing a greener and more sustainable remediation method for treating mercury contaminated soil in future engineering applications. PMID:26253234

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Quantifying the effects of soil temperature, moisture and sterilization on elemental mercury formation in boreal soils.

    PubMed

    Pannu, Ravinder; Siciliano, Steven D; O'Driscoll, Nelson J

    2014-10-01

    Soils are a source of elemental mercury (Hg(0)) to the atmosphere, however the effects of soil temperature and moisture on Hg(0) formation is not well defined. This research quantifies the effect of varying soil temperature (278-303 K), moisture (15-80% water filled pore space (WFPS)) and sterilization on the kinetics of Hg(0) formation in forested soils of Nova Scotia, Canada. Both, the logarithm of cumulative mass of Hg(0) formed in soils and the reduction rate constants (k values) increased with temperature and moisture respectively. Sterilizing soils significantly (p < 0.05, n = 10) decreased the percent of total Hg reduced to Hg(0). We describe the fundamentals of Hg(0) formation in soils and our results highlight two key processes: (i) a fast abiotic process that peaks at 45% WFPS and depletes a small pool of Hg(0) and; (ii) a slower, rate limiting biotic process that generates a large pool of reducible Hg(II).

  11. Quantifying the effects of soil temperature, moisture and sterilization on elemental mercury formation in boreal soils.

    PubMed

    Pannu, Ravinder; Siciliano, Steven D; O'Driscoll, Nelson J

    2014-10-01

    Soils are a source of elemental mercury (Hg(0)) to the atmosphere, however the effects of soil temperature and moisture on Hg(0) formation is not well defined. This research quantifies the effect of varying soil temperature (278-303 K), moisture (15-80% water filled pore space (WFPS)) and sterilization on the kinetics of Hg(0) formation in forested soils of Nova Scotia, Canada. Both, the logarithm of cumulative mass of Hg(0) formed in soils and the reduction rate constants (k values) increased with temperature and moisture respectively. Sterilizing soils significantly (p < 0.05, n = 10) decreased the percent of total Hg reduced to Hg(0). We describe the fundamentals of Hg(0) formation in soils and our results highlight two key processes: (i) a fast abiotic process that peaks at 45% WFPS and depletes a small pool of Hg(0) and; (ii) a slower, rate limiting biotic process that generates a large pool of reducible Hg(II). PMID:25016467

  12. 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

  13. Human brain mercury levels related to exposure to amalgam fillings.

    PubMed

    Ertaş, E; Aksoy, A; Turla, A; Karaarslan, E S; Karaarslan, B; Aydın, A; Eken, A

    2014-08-01

    The safety of dental amalgam as the primary material in dental restoration treatments has been debated since its introduction. It is widely accepted that amalgam restorations continuously release elemental mercury (Hg) vapor, which is inhaled and absorbed by the body and distributed to tissues, including the brain. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the presence of amalgam fillings is correlated with brain Hg level. The Hg levels in the parietal lobes of the brains of 32 cadavers were analyzed with an atomic absorption spectrometer with the mercury hydride system. A total of 32 brain samples were tested; of these, 10 were from cadavers with amalgam fillings, while 22 of them were amalgam free. Hg was detected in 60.0% (6 of 10) of the samples in the amalgam group and in 36.3% (8 of 22) in the amalgam-free group. The average Hg level of the amalgam group was 0.97 ± 0.83 µg/g (minimum: 0.3 µg/g and maximum: 2.34 µg/g), and in the amalgam-free group, it was 1.06 ± 0.57 µg/g (minimum: 0.17 µg/g and maximum: 1.76 µg/g). The results of the present study showed no correlation between the presence of amalgam fillings and brain Hg level.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. On-site mercury-contaminated soils remediation by using thermal desorption technology.

    PubMed

    Chang, T C; Yen, J H

    2006-02-01

    In this study, the thermal desorption process was used to treat a mercury-contaminated soils in Taipei. A series of bench or pilot plant experiments were also performed the optimized operation condition. The results showed that the concentrations of residual mercury in all treated soils were below 2 mg/kg, some even lower than 0.05 mg/kg. The supernatant and exhaust gas stream of the condensed desorbed mercury vapor in the remediation site were also met with the effluent standard. The total fee was estimated to be US 3,557,000 dollars, when treating contaminated soil leading to a unit treatment cost of US 834 dollars/m3 of soil.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. Speciation, distribution, and transport of mercury in contaminated soils from Descoberto, Minas Gerais, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Durão Júnior, Walter Alves; Palmieri, Helena Eugênia Leonhardt; Trindade, Mauro Campos; de Aquino Branco, Otávio Eurico; Filho, Carlos Alberto Carvalho; Fleming, Peter Marschall; da Silva, José Bento Borba; Windmöller, Cláudia Carvalhinho

    2009-05-01

    This work describes an investigation of mercury contamination in an abandoned gold mining site in the rural area of Descoberto, Minas Gerais, Brazil, whose inhabitants have reported "silver balls" present in the soil. Different granulometric fractions of soil samples and sedimented material from rainwater retention tanks in this area were analyzed for total mercury, organic matter, and mercury speciation by thermodesorption/atomic absorption spectrometry. The results showed mercury concentrations in the soils in the range of (0.0371-161) mg kg(-1), and the occurrence of Hg(0) oxidation. Some samples had concentrations as high as 90 mg kg(-1) with the majority as Hg(2+), which is important information in order to understand the biogeochemical behavior of mercury in contaminated sites and to apply the appropriate remediation technology. The retention boxes and tank samples showed that fine particles with high mercury content (3.3-90) mg kg(-1) are leached from the contaminated area, which reveals the need for efficient control of this material to prevent the contamination of stream waters. This study is an example that may be useful for other contaminated sites.

  3. 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.

  4. A preliminary study on mercury contamination to the environment from artisanal zinc smelting using indigenous methods in Hezhang County, Guizhou, China: Part 2. Mercury contaminations to soil and crop.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xinbin; Li, Guanghui; Qiu, Guangle

    2006-09-01

    Artisanal zinc smelting using indigenous method in Hezhang County, Guizhou, China has posed seriously environmental pollution to the local environment. Within less than 150 km2 area in Hezhang, a few metric tons of mercury were released into the atmosphere each year since 1989 due to artisanal zinc smelting, and the surface waters were seriously contaminated with mercury. For the first time, we investigated the mercury contamination to the local soil and crop compartments due to mercury emissions from artisanal zinc smelting activities in this area. Mercury distribution patterns in 5 soil profiles collected in artisanal zinc smelting area showed that the top soils were seriously contaminated with mercury. The soils from agriculture land close to the zinc smelting areas were also contaminated with mercury due to the deposition of mercury species that emitted from artisanal zinc smelting processes. Total mercury concentrations in top soils decrease exponentially with distance from the zinc smelting area. Corn plants that were cultivated in agriculture land close to the zinc smelting area were also contaminated with mercury. Mercury concentration in corn plant tissue increased in the order of grainsmercury concentration in grain tissue was 0.011 mg kg-1, and the highest concentration reached 0.026 mg kg-1, exceeding the national guidance limit for foodstuff other than fish. Uptake of gaseous mercury was the predominant pathway by which Hg accumulated in the foliage, and mercury in root tissue is mainly derived from soil.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Lead, cadmium and mercury levels in the 2010 Korean diet.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jae Hoon; Lee, Ji Yeon; Seo, Joo Ee; Jeong, Ji Yoon; Jung, Ki Kyung; Yoon, Hae Jung; Park, Kyung Su

    2012-01-01

    This study analysed the level of contamination of harmful heavy metals in 3820 food samples available in Korea in 2010. A total of 119 types of samples were collected, including corns, vegetables, fruits, fishes, mollusks, shellfish, crustaceans, seaweed, bean products, meats and eggs from seven major cities. These samples were analysed using ICP-MS after pre-treatment with a microwave-digestion system. Results of lead, cadmium and mercury analyses were compared with the standard specifications of Korea Food Standards Codex. As a result, high levels of Pb, Cd and Hg were detected in "cockle," "dried-squid" and "shark-meat." Acceptable intake for consumers was checked using provisional tolerable weekly intake values. Such results will be utilised as data on the exposure of human body through foods. In addition, satisfactory results were obtained through purchase and analysis of National Institute of Science and Technology-certified reference materials to obtain reliability on analysis results. PMID:24786406

  8. 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...

  9. [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.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

    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

  15. 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

  16. A laboratory based experimental study of mercury emission from contaminated soils in the River Idrijca catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kocman, D.; Horvat, M.

    2009-11-01

    Results obtained by a laboratory flux measurement system (LFMS) focused on investigating the kinetics of the mercury emission flux (MEF) from contaminated soils of the Idrija Hg-mine region, Slovenia are presented. Representative soil samples with respect to total Hg concentrations (4-417 μg g-1) and land cover (forest, meadow and alluvial soil) alongside the River Idrijca were analysed to determine the variation in MEF versus distance from the source, regulating three major environmental parameters comprising soil temperature, soil moisture and solar radiation. MEFs ranged from less than 2 to 530 ng m-2 h-1, with the highest emissions from contaminated alluvial soils and soils near the mining district in the town of Idrija. A significant decrease of MEF was then observed with increasing distance from these sites. The results revealed a strong positive effect of all three parameters investigated on momentum MEF. The light-induced flux was shown to be independent of the soil temperature, while the soil aqueous phase seems to be responsible for recharging the pool of mercury in the soil available for both the light- and thermally-induced flux. The overall flux response to simulated environmental conditions depends greatly on the form of Hg in the soil. Higher activation energies are required for the overall process to occur in soils where insoluble cinnabar prevails compared to soils where more mobile Hg forms and forms available for transformation processes are dominant.

  17. A laboratory based experimental study of mercury emission from contaminated soils in the River Idrijca catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kocman, D.; Horvat, M.

    2010-02-01

    Results obtained by a laboratory flux measurement system (LFMS) focused on investigating the kinetics of the mercury emission flux (MEF) from contaminated soils of the Idrija Hg-mine region, Slovenia are presented. Representative soil samples with respect to total Hg concentrations (4-417 μg g-1) and land cover (forest, meadow and alluvial soil) alongside the River Idrijca were analysed to determine the variation in MEF versus distance from the source, regulating three major environmental parameters comprising soil temperature, soil moisture and solar radiation. MEFs ranged from less than 2 to 530 ng m-2 h-1, with the highest emissions from contaminated alluvial soils and soils near the mining district in the town of Idrija. A significant decrease of MEF was then observed with increasing distance from these sites. The results revealed a strong positive effect of all three parameters investigated on momentum MEF. The light-induced flux was shown to be independent of the soil temperature, while the soil aqueous phase seems to be responsible for recharging the pool of mercury in the soil available for both the light- and thermally-induced flux. The overall flux response to simulated environmental conditions depends greatly on the form of Hg in the soil. Higher activation energies are required for the overall process to occur in soils where insoluble cinnabar prevails compared to soils where more mobile Hg forms and forms available for transformation processes are dominant.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Looney, B.B.

    2000-08-18

    Data collected during the first stage of a Savannah River Technology Center (SRTC) Strategic Research and Development Project confirmed the efficacy of chemical reduction and air stripping/sparging as an ultralow level mercury treatment concept for waters containing Hg(II). The process consists of dosing the water with low levels of stannous chloride to convert the mercury to Hg. This form of mercury can easily be removed from the water by air stripping or sparging. Samples of Savannah River Site (SRS) groundwater containing approximately 130 ng/L of total mercury (as Hg(II)) were used for the study. In undosed samples, sparging removed 0 percent of the initial mercury. In the dosed samples, all of the removals were greater than 94 percent, except in one water type at one dose. This sample, which was saturated with dissolved oxygen, showed a 63 percent reduction in mercury following treatment at the lowest dose. Following dosing at minimally effective levels and sparging, treated water contained less than 10 ng/L total mercury. In general, the data indicate that the reduction of mercury is highly favored and that stannous chloride reagent efficiently targets the Hg(II) contaminant in the presence of competing reactions. Based on the results, the authors estimated that the costs of implementing and operating an ultralow level mercury treatment process based on chemical reduction and stripping/sparging are 10 percent to 20 percent of traditional treatment technologies.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. A simple approach for measuring emission patterns of vapor phase mercury under temperature-controlled conditions from soil.

    PubMed

    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.

  2. [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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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).

  8. 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

  9. Mercury and selenium in fish from the Savannah river: species, trophic level, and locational differences.

    PubMed

    Burger, J; Gaines, K F; Boring, C S; Stephens, W L; Snodgrass, J; Gochfeld, M

    2001-10-01

    Levels of contaminants in fish are of considerable interest because of potential effects on the fish themselves, as well as on other organisms that consume them. In this article we compare the mercury levels in muscle tissue of 11 fish species from the Savannah River, as well as selenium levels because of its known protective effect against mercury toxicity. We sampled fish from three stretches of the river: upstream, along, and downstream the Department of Energy's Savannah River Site, a former nuclear material production facility. We test the null hypothesis that there were no differences in mercury and selenium levels in fish tissue as a function of species, trophic level, and location along the river. There were significant interspecific differences in mercury levels, with bowfin (Amia calva) having the highest levels, followed by largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) and pickerel (Esox niger). Sunfish (Lepomis spp.) had the lowest levels of mercury. As expected, these differences generally reflected trophic levels. There were few significant locational differences in mercury levels, and existing differences were not great, presumably reflecting local movements of fish between the sites examined. Selenium and mercury concentrations were positively correlated only for bass, perch (Perca flavescens), and red-breasted sunfish (Lepomis auritus). Mercury levels were positively correlated with body mass of the fish for all species except American eel (Anguilla rostrata) and bluegill sunfish (L. macrochirus). The mercury and selenium levels in fish tissue from the Savannah River are similar to or lower than those reported in many other studies, and in most cases pose little risk to the fish themselves or to other aquatic consumers, although levels in bowfin and bass are sufficiently high to pose a potential threat to high-level consumers.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Association of Dissolved Mercury with Dissolved Organic Carbon in Rivers and Streams: The Role of Watershed Soil Organic Carbon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stoken, O.; Riscassi, A.; Scanlon, T. M.

    2014-12-01

    Surface waters are an important pathway for the transport of atmospherically deposited mercury (Hg) from terrestrial watersheds. Dissolved Hg (HgD) is thought to be more bioavailable than particulate Hg and has been found to be strongly correlated with dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in numerous watersheds. The ratio of HgD to DOC is highly variable from site to site, which we hypothesize is strongly dependent on local environmental factors such as atmospheric deposition and soil organic carbon (SOC). Sixteen watersheds throughout the United States were used in this study to determine the relationship between the ratio of HgD:DOC, Hg wet deposition, and SOC. The Soil Survey Geographic database (SSURGO) and Northern Circumpolar Soil Carbon Database (NCSCD) were used to determine SOC values while HgD:DOC values were obtained from previous studies. Hg wet deposition was reported by the Mercury Deposition Network. There was no correlation found between atmospheric mercury wet deposition and HgD:DOC (r2 = 0.04; p = 0.44) but SOC was able to explain about 71% of the variation in the HgD:DOC ratio (r2 = 0.71; p < 0.01). A mathematical framework was developed to explain the power-law relationship between SOC and HgD:DOC based on soil carbon pools. The framework infers that the amount of Hg adsorbed to SOC does not increase in proportion to SOC at high SOC levels and points towards a Hg supply limitation for adsorption to soils with relatively deep carbon pools. Overall, this study identifies SOC as a first-order control on the association of HgD and DOC and indicates that globally available SOC datasets can be utilized to predict Hg transport in stream systems.

  14. Size and biomagnification: How Habitat selection explains beluga mercury levels.

    PubMed

    Loseto, L L; Stern, G A; Ferguson, S H

    2008-06-01

    Mercury (Hg) levels in the Beaufort Sea beluga (Delphinapterus leucas) population increased during the 1990s; levels have since declined but remain higher than the 1980s. The diet of this beluga population is not well-known, thus it is difficult to assess dietary Hg sources. During the summer, the Beaufort Sea belugas segregate by length, sex, and reproductive status corresponding to habitat use that may result in feeding differences and ultimately Hg uptake. To test this hypothesis, we examine beluga dietary variation using fatty acid profiles and determine which biological variables best predict diet Relationships between biological variables and fatty acids were further evaluated with stable isotopes and Hg concentrations in liver and muscle. Hg concentrations in muscle were better related to liver delta15N than muscle delta15N. Stable isotopes and fatty acids are compared in their ability to describe dietary Hg processes in beluga. Fatty acids provided support for influences of whale behavior on dietary Hg uptake, whereas stable isotopes inferred tissue Hg metabolic rates. Here, we show beluga length drives diet variability leading to differences in Hg uptake and biomagnification processes dominate beluga Hg levels over Hg bioaccumulation over time.

  15. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Diawara, Moussa M; Litt, Jill S; Unis, Dave; Alfonso, Nicholas; Martinez, Leeanne; Crock, James G; Smith, David B; Carsella, James

    2006-08-01

    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.

  17. 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.

  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. Distribution and elevated soil pools of mercury in an acidic subtropical forest of southwestern China.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Jun; Wang, Zhangwei; Zhang, Xiaoshan; Chen, Jian

    2015-07-01

    Tieshanping catchment in southwest China was supposed to a large pool of atmospheric mercury. This work was aimed to examine THg (total mercury) concentrations, pools and influence factors in the acidic forest. THg concentrations were highly elevated in the study area, which was significantly depended on TOM (total organic matter) concentrations and altitudinal elevation, whereas negatively correlated with soil pH. The pools of mercury accumulated in soils were correlated strongly with the stocks of TOM and altitude, ranged from 5.9 to 32 mg m(-2) and averaged 14.5 mg m(-2), indicating that the acidic forest was a great sink of atmospheric mercury in southwest China. THg concentrations in stream waters decreased with altitude increasing and regression analyses showed that soil/air exchange flux would be increased with the decrease of altitude. Present results suggest that elevation increasing decreases THg losses as low THg concentrations in runoffs and volatilization from soils. PMID:25836382

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  2. Dietary Predictors of Maternal Prenatal Blood Mercury Levels in the ALSPAC Birth Cohort Study

    PubMed Central

    Steer, Colin D.; Hibbeln, Joseph R.; Emmett, Pauline M.; Lowery, Tony; Jones, Robert

    2013-01-01

    Background: Very high levels of prenatal maternal mercury have adverse effects on the developing fetal brain. It has been suggested that all possible sources of mercury should be avoided. However, although seafood is a known source of mercury, little is known about other dietary components that contribute to the overall levels of blood mercury. Objective: Our goal was to quantify the contribution of components of maternal diet to prenatal blood mercury level. Methods: Whole blood samples and information on diet and sociodemographic factors were collected from pregnant women (n = 4,484) enrolled in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC). The blood samples were assayed for total mercury using inductively coupled plasma dynamic reaction cell mass spectrometry. Linear regression was used to estimate the relative contributions of 103 dietary variables and 6 sociodemographic characteristics to whole blood total mercury levels (TBM; untransformed and log-transformed) based on R2 values. Results: We estimated that maternal diet accounted for 19.8% of the total variation in ln-TBM, with 44% of diet-associated variability (8.75% of the total variation) associated with seafood consumption (white fish, oily fish, and shellfish). Other dietary components positively associated with TBM included wine and herbal teas, and components with significant negative associations included white bread, meat pies or pasties, and french fries. Conclusions: Although seafood is a source of dietary mercury, seafood appeared to explain a relatively small proportion of the variation in TBM in our UK study population. Our findings require confirmation, but suggest that limiting seafood intake during pregnancy may have a limited impact on prenatal blood mercury levels. Citation: Golding J, Steer CD, Hibbeln JR, Emmett PM, Lowery T, Jones R. 2013. Dietary predictors of maternal prenatal blood mercury levels in the ALSPAC birth cohort study. Environ Health Perspect 121:1214

  3. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-06-15

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

  5. 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.

  6. Reduced levels of mercury in first baby haircuts of autistic children.

    PubMed

    Holmes, Amy S; Blaxill, Mark F; Haley, Boyd E

    2003-01-01

    Reported rates of autism have increased sharply in the United States and the United Kingdom. One possible factor underlying these increases is increased exposure to mercury through thimerosal-containing vaccines, but vaccine exposures need to be evaluated in the context of cumulative exposures during gestation and early infancy. Differential rates of postnatal mercury elimination may explain why similar gestational and infant exposures produce variable neurological effects. First baby haircut samples were obtained from 94 children diagnosed with autism using Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition (DSM IV) criteria and 45 age- and gender-matched controls. Information on diet, dental amalgam fillings, vaccine history, Rho D immunoglobulin administration, and autism symptom severity was collected through a maternal survey questionnaire and clinical observation. Hair mercury levels in the autistic group were 0.47 ppm versus 3.63 ppm in controls, a significant difference. The mothers in the autistic group had significantly higher levels of mercury exposure through Rho D immunoglobulin injections and amalgam fillings than control mothers. Within the autistic group, hair mercury levels varied significantly across mildly, moderately, and severely autistic children, with mean group levels of 0.79, 0.46, and 0.21 ppm, respectively. Hair mercury levels among controls were significantly correlated with the number of the mothers' amalgam fillings and their fish consumption as well as exposure to mercury through childhood vaccines, correlations that were absent in the autistic group. Hair excretion patterns among autistic infants were significantly reduced relative to control. These data cast doubt on the efficacy of traditional hair analysis as a measure of total mercury exposure in a subset of the population. In light of the biological plausibility of mercury's role in neurodevelopmental disorders, the present study provides further insight into one

  7. 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.

  8. Spatial and vertical distribution of mercury in upland forest soils across the northeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Richardson, Justin B; Friedland, Andrew J; Engerbretson, Teresa R; Kaste, James M; Jackson, Brian P

    2013-11-01

    Assessing current Hg pools in forest soils of the northeastern U.S. is important for monitoring changes in Hg cycling. The forest floor, upper and lower mineral horizons were sampled at 17 long-term upland forest sites across the northeastern U.S. in 2011. Forest floor Hg concentration was similar across the study region (274 ± 13 μg kg(-1)) while Hg amount at northern sites (39 ± 6 g ha(-1)) was significantly greater than at western sites (11 ± 4 g ha(-1)). Forest floor Hg was correlated with soil organic matter, soil pH, latitude and mean annual precipitation and these variables explained approximately 70% of the variability when multiple regressed. Mercury concentration and amount in the lower mineral soil was correlated with Fe, soil organic matter and latitude, corresponding with Bs horizons of Spodosols (Podzols). Our analysis shows the importance of regional and soil properties on Hg accumulation in forest soils.

  9. Field controlled experiments of mercury accumulation in crops from air and soil.

    PubMed

    Niu, Zhenchuan; Zhang, Xiaoshan; Wang, Zhangwei; Ci, Zhijia

    2011-10-01

    Field open top chambers (OTCs) and soil mercury (Hg) enriched experiments were employed to study the influence of Hg concentrations in air and soil on the Hg accumulation in the organs of maize (Zea mays L.) and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Results showed that Hg concentrations in foliages were correlated significantly (p < 0.05) with air Hg concentrations but insignificantly correlated with soil Hg concentrations, indicating that Hg in crop foliages was mainly from air. Hg concentrations in roots were generally correlated with soil Hg concentrations (p < 0.05) but insignificantly correlated with air Hg concentrations, indicating that Hg in crop roots was mainly from soil. No significant correlations were found between Hg concentrations in stems and those in air and soil. However, Hg concentrations in upper stems were usually higher than those in bottom stems, implying air Hg might have stronger influence than soil Hg on stem Hg accumulation.

  10. Spatial and vertical distribution of mercury in upland forest soils across the northeastern United States

    PubMed Central

    Richardson, Justin B.; Friedland, Andrew J; Engerbretson, Teresa R.; Kaste, James M.; Jackson, Brian P.

    2013-01-01

    Assessing current Hg pools in forest soils of the northeastern U.S. is important for monitoring changes in Hg cycling. The forest floor, upper and lower mineral horizons were sampled at 17 long-term upland forest sites across the northeastern U.S. in 2011. Forest floor Hg concentration was similar across the study region (274 ± 13 μg kg−1) while Hg amount at northern sites (39 ± 6 g ha−1) was significantly greater than at western sites (11 ± 4 g ha−1). Forest floor Hg was correlated with soil organic matter, soil pH, latitude and mean annual precipitation and these variables explained approximately 70% of the variability when multiple regressed. Mercury concentration and amount in the lower mineral soil was correlated with Fe, soil organic matter and latitude, corresponding with Bs horizons of Spodosols (Podzols). Our analysis shows the importance of regional and soil properties on Hg accumulation in forest soils. PMID:23911621

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Dry deposition of gaseous elemental mercury to plants and soils using mercury stable isotopes in a controlled environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rutter, Andrew P.; Schauer, James J.; Shafer, Martin M.; Creswell, Joel E.; Olson, Michael R.; Robinson, Michael; Collins, Ryan M.; Parman, Andrew M.; Katzman, Tanya L.; Mallek, Justin L.

    2011-02-01

    Uptake of gaseous elemental mercury (Hg 0(g)) by three plant species and two soil types was measured using mercury vapor enriched in the 198 isotope ( 198Hg 0(g)). The plant species and soil types were: White Ash ( Fraxinus Americana; WA); White Spruce ( Picea Glauca; WS); Kentucky Bluegrass ( Poa Partensis; KYBG); Plano Silt Loam (4% organic matter; PSL); and Plainfield Sand/Sparta Loamy Sand (1.25-1.5% organic matter: PS). The plants and soils were exposed to isotopically enriched Hg 0(g) in a 19 m 3 controlled environment room for 7 days under optimal plant growth conditions (20 °C, 140 Wm -2 between 300 nm and 700 nm; 70% RH) and atmospherically relevant Hg 0(g) concentrations. Mercury was recovered from the samples using acidic digestions and surface leaches, and then analyzed for enrichments in 198Hg by ICPMS. The method was sensitivity enough that statistically significant enrichments in 198Hg were measured in the plant foliage at the end of Day 1. Whole leaf digestions and surface-selective leaches revealed that accumulative uptake was predominantly to the interior of the leaf under the conditions studied. Uptake fluxes for WA increased between the first and third days and remained constant thereafter (WA; Day 1 = 7 ± 2 × 10 -5 ng m -2 s -1; Days 3-7 = 1.3 ± 0.1 × 10 -4 ng m -2 s -1; where m 2 refers to one sided leaf area). KYBG demonstrated similar behavior although no Day 3 measurement was available (Day 1 = 7.5 ± 0.5 × 10 -5 ng m -2 s -1; Day 7 = 1.2 ± 0.1 × 10 -4 ng m -2 s -1). Fluxes to White Spruce were lower, with little difference between Days 1 and 3 followed by a decrease at Day 7 (WS; Days 1-3 = 5 ± 2 × 10 -5 ng m -2 s -1; Day 7 = 2.4 ± 0.2 × 10 -5 ng m -2 s -1). Uptake of Hg to soils was below the method detection limit for those media (PSL = 3 × 10 -2 ng m -2 s -1; PS = 3 × 10 -3 ng m -2 s -1) over the 7 day study period. Foliar resistances calculated for each species compared well to previous studies.

  18. Efficiency of white lupin in the removal of mercury from contaminated soils: soil and hydroponic experiments.

    PubMed

    Zornoza, Pilar; Millán, Rocío; Sierra, M José; Seco, Almudena; Esteban, Elvira

    2010-01-01

    This study examined the ability of the white lupin to remove mercury (Hg) from a hydroponic system (Hg concentrations 0, 1.25, 2.5, 5 and 10 micromol/L) and from soil in pots and lysimeters (total Hg concentration (19.2 +/- 1.9) mg/kg availability 0.07%, and (28.9 +/- 0.4) mg/kg availability 0.09%, respectively), and investigated the accumulation and distribution of Hg in different parts of the plant. White lupin roots efficiently took up Hg, but its translocation to the harvestable parts of the plant was low. The Hg concentration in the seeds posed no risk to human health according to the recommendations of the World Health Organization, but the shoots should not be used as fodder for livestock, at least when unmixed with other fodder crops. The accumulation of Hg in the hydroponically-grown plants was linear over the concentration range tested. The amount of Hg retained in the roots, relative to the shoots, was almost constant irrespective of Hg dose (90%). In the soil experiments, Hg accumulation increased with exposure time and was the greater in the lysimeter than in the pot experiments. Although Hg removal was the greater in the hydroponic system, revealing the potential of the white lupin to extract Hg, bioaccumulation was the greatest in the lysimeter-grown plants; the latter system more likely reflects the true behaviour of white lupin in the field when Hg availability is a factor that limits Hg removal. The present results suggest that the white lupin could be used in long-term soil reclamation strategies that include the goal of profitable land use in Hg-polluted areas.

  19. 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.

  20. Elevated mercury levels in a wintering population of common eiders (Somateria mollissima) in the northeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Meattey, Dustin E; Savoy, Lucas; Beuth, Josh; Pau, Nancy; O'Brien, Kathleen; Osenkowski, Jason; Regan, Kevin; Lasorsa, Brenda; Johnson, Ian

    2014-09-15

    In North America and Europe, sea ducks are important indicators of ecological health and inshore marine pollution. To explore spatial variation in mercury accumulation in common eiders in the northeastern United States, we compared concentrations of total mercury in common eider blood at several New England locations between 1998 and 2013. Eider food items (mollusks) were collected and analyzed to determine if mercury concentrations in eider blood were indicative of local mercury bioavailability. Eiders from Plum Island Sound, MA had a significantly higher mean blood mercury concentration (0.83 μg/g) than those in other locations. Mean mercury levels in this population were also nearly three times higher than any blood mercury concentrations reported for common eiders in published literature. We observed consistent patterns in eider blood mercury and blue mussel mercury concentrations between sites, suggesting a tentative predictive quality between the two species.

  1. 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

  2. Determination of mercury in rocks, sediments, and soils by flameless atomic absorption

    SciTech Connect

    White, L.E.; Carter, M.H. Jr.

    1980-05-22

    A simple, relatively fast method for the determination of mercury in rocks, sediments, and soils has been developed to meet the needs of the National Uranium Resources Evaluation Project. One gram of the less than 100 mesh material is placed in a 250-mL reagent bottle and is digested using a mixture of concentrated sulfuric acid and 30% hydrogen peroxide. To prevent the loss of mercury during the digestion procedure, an 18-inch dry reflux tower is employed. After digestion, the sample is treated with 5% potassium permanganate solution, and a sodium chloride-hydroxylamine sulfate reagent. Tin (11) sulfate is then added and the sample immediately attached to an aeration device. The volatilized mercury is swept into an absorption cell by an argon stream and is measured by an atomic absorption spectrophotometer adjusted to 253.7 nanometer wave-length. Absorption is then plotted by a strip chart recorder.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. [Field measurement of soil mercury emission in a Masson pine forest in Tieshanping, Chongqing in Southwestern China].

    PubMed

    Du, Bao-Yu; Wang, Qiong; Luo, Yao; Duan, Lei

    2014-10-01

    To investigate soil mercury emission characteristics in areas with high atmospheric mercury concentration, the soil-air exchanging flux of gaseous elemental mercury (Hg0) was measured for four seasons from September 2012 to July 2013 in a Masson pine forest of Tieshanping, Chongqing in Southwestern China using a dynamic flux chamber and a LUMEX RA-915+ mercury analyzer. The effects of ambient air mercury concentration and environmental factors, such as radiation intensity, air temperature, air humidity, soil temperature, and soil water content, on exchanging flux were also studied. Results showed that there was obvious seasonal variation of the Hg0 exchanging flux, with the highest value of 35.3 ng · (m2 · d)(-1) in the summer and very low values in other seasons, even negative in spring and winter. In addition to radiation intensity and air/soil temperature, ambient air mercury concentration was an important impacting factor, which was negatively correlated with the Hg0 exchanging flux, with the equilibrium concentration at 5.61 ng · m(-3). The total soil emission of Hg0 was estimated to be 2.65 μg · (m2 · a)(-1), which was much lower than that in similar forests in cleaner areas. High ambient air Hg0 concentration in Tieshanping was the main reason for the difference.

  10. [Spatial distribution of mercury in soils of a typical small agricultural watershed in the Three Gorges Reservoir region].

    PubMed

    Wang, Ya; Zhao, Zheng; Mu, Zhi-jian; Wang, Dlng-yong; Yu, Ya-wei

    2015-01-01

    To understand the mercury (Hg) pollution level and the corresponding ecological risk in agricultural watershed of the Three Gorges Reservoir region, a typical watershed, Wangjiagou, located in Fuling, where is in interior zones of the Three Gorges Reservoir region, was selected as the study object. Meanwhile, ArcGIS geo-statistics module was conducted for investigation of the Hg contents and distribution characteristics in soils of different land use types including dry land, farmland, woodland and settlements. Also the corresponding Hg pollution level and ecological risk were assessed. The results suggested that soil Hg contents in this watershed ranged from 9.47 to 94.57 microg x kg(-1), and the mean value was (34.23 +/- 16.23) microg x kg(-1). Higher Hg contents in surfaces of soils were observed in woodland, followed by farmland and settlement. The lowest was found in dry land. Surfaces of soils significantly showed Hg accumulation, and an obvious inverse correlation between soil Hg contents and soil depths was also observed in this study. Additionally, geo-statistics analysis showed a weak spatial correlation of soil Hg contents in this watershed, indicating the spatial distribution of soil Hg in this watershed was mainly influenced by several natural factors such as atmospheric wet-dry deposit, vegetation coverage and topography, instead of anthropogenic interference. Overall confirmative soil Hg pollution was not found in this watershed, which showed a very low pollution index (-0.08), but a moderate potential ecological risk still existed (the ecological risk index was 57), of which woodland had the highest potential risk. The total capacity of Hg in this watershed was 25.39 kg, among which dry land accounted for 69%.

  11. A comparison of mercury levels in feathers and eggs of osprey (Pandion haliaetus) in the North American Great Lakes.

    PubMed

    Hughes, K D; Ewins, P J; Clark, K E

    1997-11-01

    Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) eggs and chick feathers were collected for mercury analysis from nests at four Great Lakes study areas in Ontario (three "naturally formed" lakes in southern Ontario and one reservoir in northern Ontario) and two New Jersey study areas in 1991-1994. Adult osprey feathers were sampled from three Great Lakes study areas in 1991. Feathers sampled from chicks (approximately 28-35 days old) appear to be better indicators of local contaminant conditions since spatial patterns of mercury in known prey, yellow perch (Perca flavescens), also collected in these areas, were more similar to chick feathers than to eggs. Mercury levels were less variable in chick feathers than in eggs. Estimates of biomagnification factors using prey of known size at these areas were also less variable in feathers than in eggs. At naturally formed lakes, no significant correlation in mercury levels between eggs and chick feathers from the same nest was apparent, suggesting that the source of mercury contamination was not the same in these two tissues: mercury levels in eggs reflect mercury acquired on the breeding grounds, wintering grounds, and migratory route; mercury levels in chick feathers reflect local dietary conditions on the breeding grounds. Mercury levels in both osprey eggs and chick feathers were higher at the Ogoki Reservoir than at naturally formed lakes. Adult osprey feathers had higher mercury concentrations than chick feathers. Mercury levels in osprey eggs, chick feathers, and adult feathers did not approach levels associated with toxic reproductive effects. PMID:9419264

  12. Effects of mercury on reproduction, avoidance, and heat shock protein gene expression of the soil springtail Folsomia candida.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yu-Rong; Zheng, Yuan-Ming; Zhang, Li-Mei; Luan, Yun-Xia; He, Ji-Zheng

    2010-03-01

    Based on the Cambisols of Beijing (used as agricultural soils), toxicity tests were conducted to investigate the effects of mercury (Hg) on reproduction and avoidance of Folsomia candida (Hexapoda: Collembola), as well as the transcriptional responses of the hsp70 gene, under different Hg concentrations and at different exposure times. Results showed that the hsp70 gene of the springtail was the most sensitive parameter to soil Hg stress, with a half-maximal effective concentration (EC50) of 0.42 mg/kg. The EC50 values based on reproduction and avoidance tests were 9.29 and 3.88 mg/kg, respectively. The expression level of the hsp70 gene was significantly up-regulated when soil Hg concentration was over 0.25 mg/kg (lowest-observed-effect concentration [LOEC]). In addition, responses of this gene expression were strongly induced after 48 h exposure under 1 mg/kg soil Hg, which probably was due to the fast and sensitive response of the gene transcription to Hg stress. Thus, the results suggested that the responses of the hsp70 gene and individual-level effects (reproduction and avoidance) could be integrated to provide helpful information for environmental monitoring and assessment of contaminated soils. PMID:20821491

  13. Bench- and pilot-scale demonstration of thermal desorption for removal of mercury from the Lower East Fork Poplar Creek floodplain soils

    SciTech Connect

    Morris, M.I.; Sams, R.J.; Gillis, G.; Helsel, R.W.; Alperin, E.S.; Geisler, T.J.; Groen, A.; Root, D.

    1995-04-01

    Thermal desorption is an innovative technology that has seen significant growth in applications to organically contaminated soils and sludges for the remediation of hazardous, radioactive and mixed waste sites. This paper will present the results of a bench and pilot-scale demonstration of this technology for the removal of mercury from the Lower East Fork Poplar Creek floodplain soil. Results demonstrate that the mercury in this soil can be successfully removed to the target treatment levels of 10 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) and that all process residuals could be rendered RCRA-nonhazardous as defined by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. Sampling and analyses of the desorber off-gas before and after the air pollution control system demonstrated effective collection of mercury and organic constituents. Pilot-scale testing was also conducted to verify requirements for material handling of soil into and out of the process. This paper will also present a conceptual design and preliminary costs of a full-scale system, including feed preparation, thermal treatment, and residuals handling for the soil.

  14. 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

  15. Current and future levels of mercury atmospheric pollution on a global scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pacyna, Jozef M.; Travnikov, Oleg; De Simone, Francesco; Hedgecock, Ian M.; Sundseth, Kyrre; Pacyna, Elisabeth G.; Steenhuisen, Frits; Pirrone, Nicola; Munthe, John; Kindbom, Karin

    2016-10-01

    An assessment of current and future emissions, air concentrations, and atmospheric deposition of mercury worldwide is presented on the basis of results obtained during the performance of the EU GMOS (Global Mercury Observation System) project. Emission estimates for mercury were prepared with the main goal of applying them in models to assess current (2013) and future (2035) air concentrations and atmospheric deposition of this contaminant. The combustion of fossil fuels (mainly coal) for energy and heat production in power plants and in industrial and residential boilers, as well as artisanal and small-scale gold mining, is one of the major anthropogenic sources of Hg emissions to the atmosphere at present. These sources account for about 37 and 25 % of the total anthropogenic Hg emissions globally, estimated to be about 2000 t. Emissions in Asian countries, particularly in China and India, dominate the total emissions of Hg. The current estimates of mercury emissions from natural processes (primary mercury emissions and re-emissions), including mercury depletion events, were estimated to be 5207 t year-1, which represents nearly 70 % of the global mercury emission budget. Oceans are the most important sources (36 %), followed by biomass burning (9 %). A comparison of the 2035 anthropogenic emissions estimated for three different scenarios with current anthropogenic emissions indicates a reduction of these emissions in 2035 up to 85 % for the best-case scenario. Two global chemical transport models (GLEMOS and ECHMERIT) have been used for the evaluation of future mercury pollution levels considering future emission scenarios. Projections of future changes in mercury deposition on a global scale simulated by these models for three anthropogenic emissions scenarios of 2035 indicate a decrease in up to 50 % deposition in the Northern Hemisphere and up to 35 % in Southern Hemisphere for the best-case scenario. The EU GMOS project has proved to be a very important

  16. 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

  17. 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)

  18. Increased mercury in forest soils under elevated carbon dioxide.

    PubMed

    Natali, Susan M; Sañudo-Wilhelmy, Sergio A; Norby, Richard J; Zhang, Hong; Finzi, Adrien C; Lerdau, Manuel T

    2008-11-01

    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 CO(2)-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 CO(2)-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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  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.

  4. 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

  5. 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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    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; p2 = 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.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1999-07-01

    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/CH{sub 3}HgCl pellet (test 1) and 1 and 0.1 grams/pellet (tests 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 tests 2 and 3 show blood mercury concentrations over time and tissue levels at necropsy consistent with dose suggestion that this is a viable method of dosing fish.

  8. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Burke, Megan P; Hogue, Terri S; Ferreira, Marcia; Mendez, Carolina B; Navarro, Bridget; Lopez, Sonya; Jay, Jennifer A

    2010-10-01

    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.

  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. Spatial trend and pollution assessment of total mercury and methylmercury pollution in the Pearl River Delta soil, South China.

    PubMed

    Chen, Laiguo; Xu, Zhencheng; Ding, Xiaoyong; Zhang, Weidong; Huang, Yumei; Fan, Ruifang; Sun, Jiaren; Liu, Ming; Qian, Donglin; Feng, Yongbin

    2012-07-01

    Total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) were measured in large number of soil samples collected from areas with different types of land use, different depth in the Pearl River Delta (PRD) of South China. THg and MeHg concentrations ranged from 16.7 to 3320ngg(-1) and 0.01 to 1.34ngg(-1), respectively. THg levels are highest in the top 0-20cm soil layer, and decrease from the surface to bottom layer soil. Spatial variation was observed with different types of land use. Urban parks had the highest concentrations and the other areas tended to decrease in the order of residential areas, industrial areas, vegetable fields, cereal fields, and woodlands. Temporal variation was also noted, and two relatively high THg contamination zones located in the northwestern part of the PRD have significantly expanded over the last two decades. Both THg and MeHg concentrations were correlated significantly with soil organic matter (OM), but not with soil pH. THg pollution status was evaluated using two assessment methods.

  12. Mercury in Red Aspen Boletes (Leccinum aurantiacum) mushrooms and the soils.

    PubMed

    Falandysz, Jerzy; Kowalewska, Izabela; Nnorom, Innocent C; Drewnowska, Małgorzata; Jarzyńska, Grażyna

    2012-01-01

    This communication reports data on the mercury contents of Red Aspen Boletes (Leccinum aurantiacum) mushrooms and the forest soils substrate layer (0-10 cm) underneath the fruit bodies collected from nine spatially distant sites across Poland. Total Hg concentration in soil substrate in seven of the nine sites studied varied from 0.0078 ± 0.0012 to 0.028 ± 0.007 μg/g dry weight (dw) and this could be considered baseline concentrations for uncontaminated forest soils in Poland. The arithmetic mean of mercury in Red Aspen Bolete caps varied, depending on the site from 0.27 ± 0.07 to 1.3 ± 0.6 μg/g dw. The lowest Hg contents in soil (0.011 ± 0.006 μg/g and 0.009 ± 0.002 μg/g) were observed for the sites of Wandalin and Opole Lubelskie (from Lubelska Upland region) with the corresponding highest bioconcentration factor (BCF) values of 130 ± 66 and 110 ± 13 for the mushroom caps and 58 ± 29 and 64 ± 8 for the stipes, respectively. The BCF values in caps showed a downward trend with increasing mercury content of soil. A meal of 300 g of fresh caps of Red Aspen Bolete from Aleksandrów Kujawski region could expose a consumer to 8.1 μg Hg, while this will be 39 μg at the Lubelska Upland amounting to 39 and 186 % of daily Hg reference dose, respectively.

  13. Mercury fractionation, bioavailability, and ecotoxicity in highly contaminated soils from chlor-alkali plants.

    PubMed

    Zagury, Gerald J; Neculita, Carmen-Mihaela; Bastien, Christian; Deschênes, Louise

    2006-04-01

    Mercury (Hg) fractionation, speciation, bioavailability, and ecotoxicity were investigated in three highly contaminated soils from chlor-alkali plants. Single extractions and a validated four-step sequential extraction scheme were used. Total, volatile, and methyl-Hg concentrations were determined. Mercury was then separated in fractions defined as water-soluble (F1), exchangeable (F2), organic (F3), and residual (F4). Germination and growth inhibition of barley (Hordeum vulgare) and mortality of earthworms (Eisenia andrei) were assessed, and tissue-Hg concentrations of exposed organisms were determined. Results revealed highly (295 +/- 18-11,500 +/- 500 microg Hg/g) contaminated soils, but extracted fractions indicated relatively low mobility of Hg. Nevertheless, the water-soluble and the CaCl2-extractable fractions represented significant Hg concentrations (299 +/- 18 microg/g in soil 3, 67.4 +/- 2.3 microg/g in soil 1, and 9.5 +/- 0.3 microg/g in soil 2), and volatile Hg ranged between 14 and 98% of total Hg. Overall, Hg concentrations reached 6,560 +/- 240 microg/g in roots, 4,200 +/- 1,070 microg/g in aerial plants, and 1,410 +/- 120 microg/g in E. andrei. Earthworm mortality was 100% after exposure to the soil with the highest concentration of mobile Hg. In the latter soil, earthworm fragmentation and chlorotic plants were observed. Bioconcentration factors (BCFs) were higher in barley compared to earthworms, but BCFs yielded misleading values after exposure to the extremely contaminated soil. This study shows that Hg accumulated primarily in the roots, but results also indicate uptake of gaseous Hg by the aerial plants of barley. Tissue-Hg concentrations of both exposed organisms were correlated with water-soluble and CaCl2-extractable Hg, and growth inhibition was in agreement with Hg fractionation.

  14. A basin-specific aquatic food web biomagnification model for estimation of mercury target levels.

    PubMed

    Hope, Bruce

    2003-10-01

    In the Willamette River Basin (WRB, Oregon, USA), health advisories currently limit consumption of fish that have accumulated methylmercury (MeHg) to levels posing a potential health risk for humans. Under the Clean Water Act, these advisories create the requirement for a total maximum daily load (TMDL) for mercury in the WRB. A TMDL is a calculation of the maximum amount of a pollutant that a body of water can receive and still meet water-quality standards. Because MeHg is known to biomagnify in aquatic food webs, a basin-specific biomagnification factor can be used, given a protective fish tissue criterion, to estimate total mercury concentrations in surface waters required to lower advisory mercury concentrations currently in fish in the WRB. This paper presents an aquatic food web biomagnification model that simulates inorganic mercury (Hg(II)) and MeHg accumulation in fish tissue and estimates WRB-specific biomagnification factors for resident fish species of concern to stakeholders. Probabilistic (two-dimensional Monte Carlo) techniques propagate parameter variability and uncertainty throughout the model, providing decision makers with credible range information and increased flexibility in establishing a specific mercury target level. The model predicts the probability of tissue mercury concentrations in eight fish species within the range of concentrations measured in these species over 20 years of water-quality monitoring. Estimated mean biomagnification factor values range from 1.12 x 10(6) to 7.66 x 10(6) and are within the range of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency national values. Several WRB-specific mercury target levels are generated, which very by their probability of affording human health protection relative to the federal MeHg tissue criterion of 0.30 mg/kg. Establishing a specific numeric target level is, however, a public policy decision, and one that will require further discussions among WRB stakeholders. PMID:14552019

  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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. [Effects of Long-term Different Tillage Methods on Mercury and Methylmercury Contents in Purple Paddy Soil and Overlying Water].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin-yue; Tang, Zhen-ya; Zhang, Cheng; Wang, Yong-min; Wang, Ding-yong

    2016-03-15

    A long-term experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of tillage methods on mercury and methylmercury contents in the purple paddy soil and overlying water. The experiment included five tillage methods: no-tillage and fallow in winter, ridge-no-tillage, compartments-no-tillage, paddy-upland rotation and conventional tillage. The results showed that the content of total mercury in soil had the maximum value in the 10-20 cm layer of no-tillage and fallow in winter, ridge-no-tillage and compartments-no-tillage, and the enrichment effect of no-tillage and fallow in winter was especially significant. The concentration of total mercury in soil of paddy-upland rotation and conventional tillage decreased with the increase of the soil depth, and paddy-upland rotation was specifically beneficial to the migration of mercury. The distribution of soil methylmercury was similar to that of total mercury in the soil profile. The methylation ability of soil mercury in the surface and middle of the soil profile was weaker than that at the bottom, while there was an opposite trend for other tillage methods. The concentrations of dissolved mercury ( DHg) and dissolved methylmercury ( DMeHg) in the overlaying water declined with the rise of the water depth in all treatments. The content of DHg in sediment porewater was related to the value of soil total mercury, and they had the same distribution in the soil profile. The content of DMeHg and its proportion accounted for DHg in porewater owned their largest value in the 10-20 cm layer of no-tillage and fallow in winter and ridge-no-tillage, where showed the lowest value of DMeHg in porewater for paddy-upland rotation and conventional tillage. And the percentage of DMeHg in DHg in porewater grew with the increase of soil depth of the latter two methods. Noticeably, the concentration of DMeHg and its proportion accounted for DHg in porewater were both higher than the values in overlying water for all tillage methods.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Forest Structure Affects Soil Mercury Losses in the Presence and Absence of Wildfire.

    PubMed

    Homann, Peter S; Darbyshire, Robyn L; Bormann, Bernard T; Morrissette, Brett A

    2015-11-01

    Soil is an important, dynamic component of regional and global mercury (Hg) cycles. This study evaluated how changes in forest soil Hg masses caused by atmospheric deposition and wildfire are affected by forest structure. Pre and postfire soil Hg measurements were made over two decades on replicate experimental units of three prefire forest structures (mature unthinned, mature thinned, clear-cut) in Douglas-fir dominated forest of southwestern Oregon. In the absence of wildfire, O-horizon Hg decreased by 60% during the 14 years after clearcutting, possibly the result of decreased atmospheric deposition due to the smaller-stature vegetative canopy; in contrast, no change was observed in mature unthinned and thinned forest. Wildfire decreased O-horizon Hg by >88% across all forest structures and decreased mineral-soil (0 to 66 mm depth) Hg by 50% in thinned forest and clear-cut. The wildfire-associated soil Hg loss was positively related to the amount of surface fine wood that burned during the fire, the proportion of area that burned at >700 °C, fire severity as indicated by tree mortality, and soil C loss. Loss of soil Hg due to the 200,000 ha wildfire was more than four times the annual atmospheric Hg emissions from human activities in Oregon.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  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, 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 §...

  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, 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 §...

  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, 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 §...

  17. 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 §...

  18. 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 §...

  19. High mercury levels in hair samples from residents of Taiji, a Japanese whaling town.

    PubMed

    Endo, Tetsuya; Haraguchi, Koichi

    2010-05-01

    We investigated the mercury concentrations in red meat from pilot whales consumed by some residents of the Japanese whaling town, Taiji, and in hair samples from 50 residents for their maker of mercury burden. The methyl mercury (M-Hg) level in the red meat was 5.9 microg/wet g, markedly higher than the US FDA action level and Cordex Alimentarius guideline level for predatory fish (1.0 microg/wet g). The average level of total mercury (T-Hg) in the hair from residents who ate whale meat more than once a month was 24.6 microg/g, whereas the average from the residents who did not consume any whale meat was 4.3 microg/g. The T-Hg concentrations in the hair from three donors exceeded 50 microg/g, the level for NOAEL set by WHO. The T-Hg level found in the Taiji whale meat consumers was markedly higher than that observed in the Japanese population overall (about 2 microg/g).

  20. 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

  1. Effects of sulfate and selenite on mercury methylation in a mercury-contaminated rice paddy soil under anoxic conditions.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yongjie; Dang, Fei; Zhong, Huan; Wei, Zhongbo; Li, Ping

    2016-03-01

    Biogeochemical cycling of sulfur and selenium (Se) could play an important role in methylmercury (MeHg) dynamics in soil, while their potential effects on MeHg production in rice paddy soil are less understood. The main objective of this study was to explore the effects of sulfate and selenite on net MeHg production in contaminated rice paddy soil, characterized with massive MeHg production and thus MeHg accumulation in rice. A series of microcosm incubation experiments were conducted using a contaminated paddy soil amended with sulfate and/or selenite, in which sulfate-reducing bacteria were mainly responsible for MeHg production. Our results demonstrated that sulfate addition reduced solid and dissolved MeHg levels in soils by ≤18 and ≤25 %, respectively. Compared to sulfate, selenite was more effective in inhibiting net MeHg production, and the inhibitory effect depended largely on amended selenite doses. Moreover, sulfate input played a dual role in affecting Hg-Se interactions in soil, which could be explained by the dynamics of sulfate under anoxic conditions. Therefore, the effects of sulfate and selenium input should be carefully considered when assessing risk of Hg in anoxic environments (e.g., rice paddy field and wetland).

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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...

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. [Transfer characteristics of mercury, lead, cadmium, zinc and cuprum from soil to vegetable around zinc smelting plant].

    PubMed

    Zheng, N; Wang, Qi-Chao; Zheng, Dong-Mei

    2007-06-01

    The transfer characteristics of Hg, Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu from soil to vegetables near zinc smelting plant in Huludao City, China were investigated, and the sources of heavy metals in the soil and vegetable were also analyzed. The results indicate that the Hg, Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu contents of vegetables are 0.013, 5.476, 2.852, 41.16 and 1.515 mg/kg (fresh weight), respectively, and the environment around Huludao Zinc Plant are contaminated seriously. The transfer factors (TF) of heavy metals decrease in the order of Cd > Zn > Cu > Pb > Hg. The transfer factors of heavy metals from soil to leaves are higher than from soil to other tissues. The heavy metals in soil derive from atmosphere, and the parts of Pb in the leaves of vegetable derive from atmosphere. Uptake of gaseous mercury is the predominant pathway by which mercury accumulates in the vegetable.

  10. Mercury speciation in highly contaminated soils from chlor-alkali plants using chemical extractions.

    PubMed

    Neculita, Carmen-Mihaela; Zagury, Gérald J; Deschênes, Louise

    2005-01-01

    A four-step novel sequential extraction procedure (SEP) was developed to assess Hg fractionation and mobility in three highly contaminated soils from chlor-alkali plants (CAPs). The SEP was validated using a certified reference material (CRM) and pure Hg compounds. Total, volatile, and methyl Hg concentrations were also determined using single extractions. Mercury was separated into four fractions defined as water-soluble (F1), exchangeable (F2) (0.5 M NH4Ac-EDTA and 1 M CaCl2 were tested), organic (F3) (successive extractions with 0.2 M NaOH and CH3COOH 4% [v/v]), and residual (F4) (HNO3 + H2SO4 + HClO4). The soil characterization revealed extremely contaminated (295 +/- 18 to 11 500 +/- 500 mg Hg kg(-1)) coarse-grained sandy soils having an alkaline pH (7.9-9.1), high chloride concentrations (5-35 mg kg(-1)), and very low organic carbon content (0.00-18.2 g kg(-1)). Methyl Hg concentrations were low (0.2-19.3 microg kg(-1)) in all soils. Sequential extractions indicated that the majority of the Hg was associated with the residual fraction (F4). In Soils 1 and 3, however, high percentages (88-98%) of the total Hg were present as volatile Hg. Therefore, in these two soils, a high proportion of volatile Hg was present in the residual fraction. The nonresidual fraction (F1 + F2 + F3) was most abundant in Soil 1 (14-42%), suggesting a higher availability of Hg in this soil. The developed and validated SEP was reproducible and efficient for highly contaminated samples. Recovery ranged between 93 and 98% for the CRM and 70 and 130% for the CAP-contaminated soils.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Mercury in Hazel Bolete Leccinum griseum and soil substratum: Distribution, bioconcentration and dietary exposure.

    PubMed

    Krasińska, Grażyna; Falandysz, Jerzy

    2015-01-01

    This study aimed to examine the accumulation and distribution of total mercury (Hg) in fruiting bodies of edible wild-grown mushroom Hazel Bolete Leccinum griseum (Quél.) Singer, collected from six spatially distantly distributed places across Poland and to assess the probable dietary intake of the element by consumers. Mercury content of fungal and soil samples were determined by cold-vapour atomic absorption spectroscopy (CV-AAS) with a direct sample thermal decomposition coupled with gold wool trap of Hg and its further desorption and quantitative measurement at the wavelength of 296 nm. The median values of Hg content in caps of L. griseum collected from less-contaminated places (< 0.10 mg Hg kg(-1) dry matter in upper 0-10 cm layer of soil substratum) were from 0.23 mg kg(-1) dm to 0.43 mg kg(-1) dm. And for more contaminated topsoil (0.15 mg Hg kg(-1) dry matter), the median in caps was about 1.5 mg kg(-1) dry matter. The mushroom L. griseum has potential to accumulate Hg in fruiting bodies, while quantities of this element noted in consignments of this species originating from the forests with typical background values of Hg in topsoil are low. In the light of the published value of PTWI for Hg consumption of fruiting bodies of L. griseus emerged in forests of Poland is without health risk for consumers. Information on total mercury and methylmercury in Fungi of the genus Leccinum is also described briefly.

  16. 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

  17. Determination of organic mercury species in soils by high-performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet detection.

    PubMed

    Hempel, M; Hintelmann, H; Wilken, R D

    1992-03-01

    Reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet detection was optimized for the simultaneous separation and quantification of nine organic mercury compounds: methyl-, ethyl-, phenyl-, methoxyethyl-, ethoxyethyl-, benzoic and tolylmercury, mersalylic acid and nitromersol. The nine compounds were successfully separated on octadecylsilane columns (200 x 3 mm i.d.) by gradient elution with a methanol-water mixture ranging from 30 to 50% v/v. The detection limits for the various compounds are in the range 7.0-95.1 micrograms dm-3. For the extraction of five organomercurials from spiked soils, eight different extraction solutions were tested to differentiate between the total content and the available/soluble fraction of the analytes. Ammonium acetate solutions (1 mol dm-3) and water proved to be suitable agents for the estimation of the available and soluble fractions of methyl-, ethyl-, benzoic, methoxyethyl- and ethoxyethylmercury. For the determination of the total content of methyl- and benzoic mercury in soils, solutions of potassium iodide (1 mol dm-3)-ascorbic acid (0.1 mol dm-3) and oxalic acid (1 mol dm-3) provided recoveries in the ranges 53-81%. None of the solutions tested is suitable for the extraction of ethyl-, methoxyethyl- and ethoxyethylmercury.

  18. 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.

  19. [Mercury poisoning].

    PubMed

    Bensefa-Colas, L; Andujar, P; Descatha, A

    2011-07-01

    Mercury is a widespread heavy metal with potential severe impacts on human health. Exposure conditions to mercury and profile of toxicity among humans depend on the chemical forms of the mercury: elemental or metallic mercury, inorganic or organic mercury compounds. This article aims to reviewing and synthesizing the main knowledge of the mercury toxicity and its organic compounds that clinicians should know. Acute inhalation of metallic or inorganic mercury vapours mainly induces pulmonary diseases, whereas chronic inhalation rather induces neurological or renal disorders (encephalopathy and interstitial or glomerular nephritis). Methylmercury poisonings from intoxicated food occurred among some populations resulting in neurological disorders and developmental troubles for children exposed in utero. Treatment using chelating agents is recommended in case of symptomatic acute mercury intoxication; sometimes it improves the clinical effects of chronic mercury poisoning. Although it is currently rare to encounter situations of severe intoxication, efforts remain necessary to decrease the mercury concentration in the environment and to reduce risk on human health due to low level exposure (dental amalgam, fish contamination by organic mercury compounds…). In case of occupational exposure to mercury and its compounds, some disorders could be compensated in France. Clinicians should work with toxicologists for the diagnosis and treatment of mercury intoxication.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Control of Mercury Accumulation And Mobility in a Forest Soil as Indicated by δ13C

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bajracharya, U.; Jackson, B.; Feng, X.

    2015-12-01

    Mobility and cycling of mercury (Hg) in soils is important. Hg leaching results in its transport to wetlands, where Hg methylates and bioaccumulates through aquatic food webs. It has been shown that Hg cycle in soil is controlled by organic matter (OM) quantity as well as quality. The latter is indicated by increase of Hg/C ratio as C/N decreases by decomposition. Here we investigate the Hg-C relationship in a temperate forest soil in Hanover, NH, with a focus of examining the control of OM quality on soil Hg accumulation and mobility. We use δ13C as an indicator of carbon quality. The soil samples from A, B and C horizons were separated into six particle size fractionations from <25 µm to 1 mm. Both the bulk soil and particle size separates were analyzed for Hg concentrations, carbon content (C%), δ13C, and Hg partition coefficient (Kd =mg gSoil-1/mg Lsolution-1). We found that the bulk Hg concentration decreases significantly with increasing δ13C (R2=0.90, p <0.0001), but Hg/C increases with δ13C (R2=0.59, p =0.009). Both Hg/C and δ13C increase with soil depth, and at a given horizon, they both increase with decreasing particle size. These results indicate that high Hg/C ratios are associated with aged, decomposed, and low quality OM. Mostly likely, this accumulation of Hg in older OM is a result of retention of Hg upon carbon loss during soil respiration. However, the relationship between particle size and Hg/C is significantly different among different horizons; the most prominent relationship occurs at the deepest C horizon. This cross effect of horizon and particle size cannot be explained by normal aging of the OM through decomposition, pointing to mechanisms of changing in Hg bonding characteristics with OM aging or particle aggregation. The measured Kd value decreased with increasing δ13C (R2=0.43, p =0.0031), indicating that Hg associated with older OM is more subject to leaching compared to younger, fresher OM. This association can also be

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Mercury vapor pressure of flue gas desulfurization scrubber suspensions: effects of pH level, gypsum, and iron.

    PubMed

    Schuetze, Jan; Kunth, Daniel; Weissbach, Sven; Koeser, Heinz

    2012-03-01

    Calcium-based scrubbers designed to absorb HCl and SO(2) from flue gases can also remove oxidized mercury. Dissolved mercury halides may have an appreciable partial vapor pressure. Chemical reduction of the dissolved mercury may increase the Hg emission, thereby limiting the coremoval of mercury in the wet scrubbing process. In this paper we evaluate the effects of the pH level, different gypsum qualities, and iron in flue gas desulfurization (FGD) scrubber suspensions. The impact of these parameters on mercury vapor pressure was studied under controlled laboratory conditions in model scrubber suspensions. A major influence is exerted by pH values above 7, considerably amplifying the mercury concentration in the vapor phase above the FGD scrubber suspension. Gypsum also increases the mercury re-emission. Fe(III) decreases and Fe(II) increases the vapor pressure significantly. The consequences of the findings for a reliable coremoval of mercury in FGD scrubbers are discussed. It is shown that there is an increased risk of poor mercury capture in lime-based FGD scrubbers in comparison to limestone FGD scrubbers.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Mercury and docosahexaenoic acid levels in maternal and cord blood in relation to segmental maternal hair mercury concentrations at parturition.

    PubMed

    Sakamoto, Mineshi; Chan, Hing Man; Domingo, José L; Kawakami, Shoichi; Murata, Katsuyuki

    2012-09-01

    Fish is a major source of harmful methylmercury (MeHg) and beneficial docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in the developing brain. In this study, we investigated the correlations among maternal and umbilical cord (cord) MeHg and DHA levels at parturition, and mercury (Hg) concentration in 1-cm incremental segments hair samples which grew during gestation representing monthly MeHg exposure levels throughout the period. Whole blood Hg and plasma DHA levels were measured in blood sample pairs collected from 54 mothers at early gestation and parturition, and in cord blood. Maternal hair samples were collected at parturition, and Hg concentrations were measured in 1-cm incremental segments. Hg level in mothers at parturition was slightly lower than that at early gestation and the level in cord blood were approximately 1.9 times higher than that in mothers at parturition. On the other hand, DHA level in mothers at parturition was approximately 2.3 and 1.6 times higher than those in mothers at early gestation and in cord plasma, respectively. These results indicate that kinetics of these chemicals in mothers during gestation and placental transfer are completely different. However, Hg and DHA levels had significant positive correlation in fetal circulation. The cord blood Hg showed the strongest correlation with maternal hair Hg in the first 1-cm segment from the scalp at parturition (r=0.87), indicating that fetal MeHg level reflects maternal MeHg burden at late gestation. In contrast, maternal and cord plasma DHA concentrations at parturition showed the highest correlation coefficients with Hg in the fifth (r=0.43) and fourth (r=0.38) 1-cm hair segments, suggesting that maternal and fetal DHA levels reflects maternal fish intake during mid-gestation.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Mercury concentrations in forest soils and stream waters in northeast and south China.

    PubMed

    Luo, Yao; Duan, Lei; Wang, Long; Xu, Guangyi; Wang, Shuxiao; Hao, Jiming

    2014-10-15

    Atmospheric deposition of mercury (Hg) is generally higher in China than in North America and Europe. Transport and methylation of Hg deposited in forest ecosystems may cause health risks to humans. We collected water samples from 117 small streams, and soil samples from 25 sites in forested areas in northeast and south China during 2011-2013 to investigate the spatial distribution of Hg. Results showed that Hg concentration in surface soil (0-5 cm in depth) was generally higher in south China (97.8 ± 36.0 μg/kg) than that in the northeast (44.0 ± 14.1 μg/kg). In contrast, the Hg concentration in stream water was higher in northeast China (17.2 ± 11.0 ng/L) than that in the south (6.2 ± 6.4 ng/L). Hg concentrations in surface soil were positively correlated with Hg concentrations in the overlying litter Oe/Oa horizon (r(2)=0.84). Hg concentrations in stream water were positively correlated to DOC (dissolved organic carbon) concentrations (r(2)=0.43) and to the Hg concentration in the litter Oe/Oa horizon (r(2)=0.69). Because the litter Oe/Oa horizon represents Hg accumulated by foliage, the positive correlations indicate that atmospheric Hg deposition was an important factor affecting Hg concentrations in soils and stream water.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-07-27

    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.

  16. 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

  17. Wild Boar Tissue Levels of Cadmium, Lead and Mercury in Seven Regions of Continental Croatia

    PubMed Central

    Sedak, Marija; Đokić, Maja; Šimić, Branimir

    2010-01-01

    Concentrations of cadmium, mercury and lead were analysed by atomic absorption spectrometry in the kidney and muscle of free-living wild boar (n = 169) from hunting grounds in seven counties of continental Croatia. Mean levels of metals (mg/kg) in muscle and kidney of boars ranged as follows: Cd: 0.005–0.016 and 0.866–4.58, Pb: 0.033–0.15 and 0.036–0.441, Hg: 0.004–0.012 and 0.04–0.152. In all seven regions, concentrations exceeded the permitted values (muscle and kidney mg/kg: cadmium 0.05/1; lead 0.1/0.5; mercury 0.03/0.1) in 13.6% and 71.6% of samples (muscle and kidney, respectively) for cadmium; 13.6% and 8.9% for lead; 19.5% and 2.4% for mercury. There were significant differences among the regions. Vukovar-Srijem and Virovitica-Podravina Counties were highly contaminated with cadmium, Sisak-Moslavina and Virovitica-Podravina Counties with lead and Brod-Posavina County had highest mercury concentrations. These results suggest a detailed investigation of physiological and environmental factors contributing to accumulation of metals in boars. PMID:20405101

  18. 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.

  19. Legacy source of mercury in an urban stream-wetland ecosystem in central North Carolina, USA.

    PubMed

    Deonarine, Amrika; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Zhang, Tong; Cai, Yong; Richardson, Curtis J

    2015-11-01

    In the United States, aquatic mercury contamination originates from point and non-point sources to watersheds. Here, we studied the contribution of mercury in urban runoff derived from historically contaminated soils and the subsequent production of methylmercury in a stream-wetland complex (Durham, North Carolina), the receiving water of this runoff. Our results demonstrated that the mercury originated from the leachate of grass-covered athletic fields. A fraction of mercury in this soil existed as phenylmercury, suggesting that mercurial anti-fungal compounds were historically applied to this soil. Further downstream in the anaerobic sediments of the stream-wetland complex, a fraction (up to 9%) of mercury was converted to methylmercury, the bioaccumulative form of the metal. Importantly, the concentrations of total mercury and methylmercury were reduced to background levels within the stream-wetland complex. Overall, this work provides an example of a legacy source of mercury that should be considered in urban watershed models and watershed management.

  20. 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.

  1. Mercury-resistant bacteria from salt marsh of Tagus Estuary: the influence of plants presence and mercury contamination levels.

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Neusa L L; Areias, Andreia; Mendes, Ricardo; Canário, João; Duarte, Aida; Carvalho, Cristina

    2014-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination of aquatic systems has been recognized as a global, serious problem affecting both wildlife and humans. High levels of Hg, in particular methylmercury (MeHg), were detected in surface sediments of Tagus Estuary. MeHg is neurotoxic and its concentration in aquatic systems is dependent upon the relative efficiency of reduction, methylation, and demethylation processes, which are mediated predominantly by the microbial community, in particular mercury-resistant (HgR) bacteria. Plants in contaminated ecosystems are known to take up Hg via plant roots. Therefore, the aims of this study were to (1) isolate and characterize HgR bacteria from a salt marsh of Tagus Estuary (Rosário) and (2) determine HgR bacteria levels in the rhizosphere and, consequently, their influence in metal cycling. To accomplish this objective, sediments samples were collected during the spring season in an area colonized by Sacocornia fruticosa and Spartina maritima and compared with sediments without plants. From these samples, 13 aerobic HgR bacteria were isolated and characterized morphologically, biochemically, and genetically, and susceptibility to Hg compounds, Hg(2+), and MeHg was assessed by determination of minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC). Genetically, the mer operon was searched by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and 16S rRNA sequencing was used for bacterial identification. Results showed that the isolates were capable of growing in the presence of high Hg concentration with MIC values for HgCl2 and MeHgCl in the ranges of 1.7-4.2 μg/ml and 0.1-0.9 μg/ml, respectively. The isolates from sediments colonized with Sacocornia fruticosa displayed higher resistance levels compared to ones colonized with Spartina maritima. Bacteria isolates showed different capacity of Hg accumulation but all displayed Hg volatilization capabilities (20-50%). Mer operon was found in two isolates, which genetically confirmed their capability to convert Hg compounds by

  2. Mercury-resistant bacteria from salt marsh of Tagus Estuary: the influence of plants presence and mercury contamination levels.

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Neusa L L; Areias, Andreia; Mendes, Ricardo; Canário, João; Duarte, Aida; Carvalho, Cristina

    2014-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination of aquatic systems has been recognized as a global, serious problem affecting both wildlife and humans. High levels of Hg, in particular methylmercury (MeHg), were detected in surface sediments of Tagus Estuary. MeHg is neurotoxic and its concentration in aquatic systems is dependent upon the relative efficiency of reduction, methylation, and demethylation processes, which are mediated predominantly by the microbial community, in particular mercury-resistant (HgR) bacteria. Plants in contaminated ecosystems are known to take up Hg via plant roots. Therefore, the aims of this study were to (1) isolate and characterize HgR bacteria from a salt marsh of Tagus Estuary (Rosário) and (2) determine HgR bacteria levels in the rhizosphere and, consequently, their influence in metal cycling. To accomplish this objective, sediments samples were collected during the spring season in an area colonized by Sacocornia fruticosa and Spartina maritima and compared with sediments without plants. From these samples, 13 aerobic HgR bacteria were isolated and characterized morphologically, biochemically, and genetically, and susceptibility to Hg compounds, Hg(2+), and MeHg was assessed by determination of minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC). Genetically, the mer operon was searched by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and 16S rRNA sequencing was used for bacterial identification. Results showed that the isolates were capable of growing in the presence of high Hg concentration with MIC values for HgCl2 and MeHgCl in the ranges of 1.7-4.2 μg/ml and 0.1-0.9 μg/ml, respectively. The isolates from sediments colonized with Sacocornia fruticosa displayed higher resistance levels compared to ones colonized with Spartina maritima. Bacteria isolates showed different capacity of Hg accumulation but all displayed Hg volatilization capabilities (20-50%). Mer operon was found in two isolates, which genetically confirmed their capability to convert Hg compounds by

  3. 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.

  4. Levels of depleted uranium in Kosovo soils.

    PubMed

    Sansone, U; Stellato, L; Jia, G; Rosamilia, S; Gaudino, S; Barbizzi, S; Belli, M

    2001-01-01

    The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has performed a field survey at 11 sites located in Kosovo, where depleted uranium (DU) ammunitions were used by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) during the last Balkans conflict (1999). Soil sampling was performed to assess the spread of DU ground contamination around and within the NATO target sites and the migration of DU along the soil profile. The 234U/238U and 235U/238U activity concentration ratios have been used as an indicator of natural against anthropogenic sources of uranium. The results show that levels of 238U activity concentrations in soils above 100 Bq x kg(-1) can be considered a 'tracer' of the presence of DU in soils. The results also indicate that detectable ground surface contamination by DU is limited to areas within a few metres from localised points of concentrated contamination caused by penetrator impacts. Vertical distribution of DU along the soil profile is measurable up to a depth of 10-20 cm. This latter aspect is of particular relevance for the potential risk of future contamination of groundwater.

  5. Parameterizing soil emission and atmospheric oxidation-reduction in a model of the global biogeochemical cycle of mercury.

    PubMed

    Kikuchi, Tetsuro; Ikemoto, Hisatoshi; Takahashi, Katsuyuki; Hasome, Hisashi; Ueda, Hiromasa

    2013-01-01

    Using the GEOS-Chem atmosphere-land-ocean coupled mercury model, we studied the significances of two processes, soil emission and atmospheric oxidation-reduction, in the global biogeochemical cycling of mercury and their parametrization to improve model performance. Implementing an empirical equation for soil emission flux (Esoil) including soil mercury concentration, solar radiation, and surface air temperature as parameters enabled the model to reproduce the observed seasonal variations of Esoil, whereas the default setting, which uses only the former two parameters, failed. The modified setting of Esoil also increased the model-simulated atmospheric concentration in the summertime surface layer of the lower- and midlatitudes and improved the model reproducibility for the observations in Japan and U.S. in the same period. Implementing oxidation of atmospheric gaseous elemental mercury (Hg(0)) by ozone with an updated rate constant, as well as the oxidation by bromine atoms (Br) in the default setting, improved the model reproducibility for the dry deposition fluxes observed in Japan. This setting, however, failed to reproduce the observed seasonal variations of atmospheric concentrations in the Arctic sites due to the imbalance between oxidation and reduction, whereas the model with Br as the sole Hg(0) oxidant in the polar atmosphere could capture the variations.

  6. Mercury in urban soils with various types of land use in Beijing, China.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xi; Xia, Xinghui; Wu, Shan; Wang, Fan; Guo, Xuejun

    2010-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) concentration was investigated for 127 urban soil samples collected from business area (BA), classical garden (CG), culture and education area (CEA), public green space (PGS), residential area (RA) and roadside area (RSA) in Beijing. The median of Hg concentration in Beijing was 0.26 mg/kg. The value in CG was much higher than the other 5 types of land use, which was due to the historical use of Hg. More than 87% of the samples were not contaminated according to the guideline values of China, UK, Canada, and USEPA. Spatial distribution map revealed that Hg concentration showed a decreasing trend from the center to the suburb, it increased with the age of the urban area. Hg contamination in urban area of Beijing is marked by features of non-point sources associated with human activities, and it is most likely to be the common characteristics of Hg contamination in cities.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Influence of methylmercury from tributary streams on mercury levels in Savannah River Asiatic clams.

    PubMed

    Paller, M H; Jagoe, C H; Bennett, H; Brant, H A; Bowers, J A

    2004-06-01

    Average methylmercury levels in five Savannah River tributary streams, sampled 11 times over 2 years (0.170 ng/l), were nearly twice as high as in the Savannah River (0.085 ng/l). Total mercury levels in the tributaries (2.98 ng/l) did not differ significantly from the river (2.59 ng/l). All of the tributaries drained extensive wetlands that would be expected to support comparatively high rates of methylation. Mercury concentrations in Asiatic clams (Corbicula fluminea) collected from the discharge plumes of Savannah River tributaries (average of 0.044 microg/g wet weight) were significantly (P<0.001) higher than in Asiatic clams collected from the Savannah River upstream from the tributary mouths (average of 0.017 microg/g wet weight). These results indicate that streams draining wetlands into coastal plain rivers can create localized areas of elevated methylmercury with resulting increases in the mercury levels of river biota.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  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).

  14. 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.

  15. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

  17. 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...

  18. 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

    2015-05-29

    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

  19. 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

  20. Menopause and blood mercury levels: the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES) 2008-2011.

    PubMed

    Yuk, Jin-Sung; Lee, Jung Hun; Jeon, Jin-Dong; Kim, Tai June; Lee, Myung-Hwa; Park, Won I

    2014-12-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the association between menopause and blood mercury concentrations in South Korean women. Women aged ≥20 years who participated in the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2008-2011 were included in this study. Primary and secondary analyses included women aged ≥20 years (n = 1,642) and 45-55 years (i.e., perimenopausal; n = 325), respectively. For all analyses, the mercury levels were log-transformed. The linear regression model for mercury levels was adjusted for age, body mass index, household income, menopausal status, hormone replacement therapy, use of oral contraceptives, smoking history, alcohol intake, physical activity, number of pregnancies, serum ferritin levels, and fish consumption. After adjusting for covariates, log-transformed blood mercury levels were significantly lower in women who were menopausal [β-coefficient -0.1488; 95 % confidence interval -0.2586, -0.0389; P = 0.01) than in those who were premenopausal. A similar relationship was identified in perimenopausal women (β-coefficient -0.1753; 95 % confidence interval -0.3357, -0.015; P = 0.03). The blood mercury concentration was lower in postmenopausal women than in premenopausal women. There was a significant positive correlation between blood mercury concentrations and both the frequency of alcohol intake and serum ferritin levels.

  1. Low-level prenatal mercury exposure in north China: an exploratory study of anthropometric effects.

    PubMed

    Ou, Langbo; Chen, Cen; Chen, Long; Wang, Huanhuan; Yang, Tianjun; Xie, Han; Tong, Yindong; Hu, Dan; Zhang, Wei; Wang, Xuejun

    2015-06-01

    In order to investigate anthropometric effects of mercury (Hg) exposure, we examined the status of human prenatal exposure to Hg species, including total mercury (THg), methylmercury (MeHg) and inorganic mercury (IHg), in North China, as well as their potential effects on fetal and infant growth. Hg concentrations in various bioindicators were measured from 50 Chinese women and newborns in 2011. The participants were followed for 12 months to collect anthropometric information. Linear and two-level regression analyses were performed to determine the associations between Hg levels and body growth. The geometric mean levels of THg in the placenta, cord blood, fetal hair, and maternal blood, hair, and urine were 25.88 μg/kg dry wt, 2.73 μg/L, 572.98 μg/kg, 2.29 μg/L, 576.54 μg/kg, and 0.58 μg/g creatinine, respectively. Nearly 100% of Hg presented as IHg in urine, and the percentage of IHg in other bioindicators was 14.86-48.73%. We observed significantly negative associations between Hg levels in some matrixes and anthropometry of neonates (weight and height) and infants (height) (p < 0.05). THg levels in maternal hair were also negatively associated with infant growth rate of weight during 12 months after delivery (p = 0.017). This study suggests that low-level prenatal Hg exposure could play a role in attenuating fetal and infant growth, and the effects of MeHg and IHg are different.

  2. 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.

  3. Age-dependent lower or higher levels of hair mercury in autistic children than in healthy controls.

    PubMed

    Majewska, Maria Dorota; Urbanowicz, Ewa; Rok-Bujko, Paulina; Namyslowska, Irena; Mierzejewski, Paweł

    2010-01-01

    An association between autism and early life exposure to mercury is a hotly debated issue. In this study, 91 autistic Polish children, male and female, 3-4 and 7-9 years old, were compared to 75 age- and sex-matched healthy children with respect to: demographic, perinatal, clinical and developmental measures, parental age, birth order, morphometric measures, vaccination history, and hair mercury content. In demographic and perinatal measures there were no consistent differences between the autistic and control groups. Autistic children had a significantly greater prevalence of adverse reactions after vaccinations and abnormal development than controls. Between 45 and 80% of autistic children experienced developmental regress. Autistic children significantly differed from healthy peers in the concentrations of mercury in hair: younger autistics had lower levels, while older - higher levels than their respective controls. The results suggest that autistic children differ from healthy children in metabolism of mercury, which seems to change with age.

  4. 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.

  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. Alterations in plasma sodium and potassium levels following chronic oral ingestion of lead, mercury and cadmium in male albino rats.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, R; Chansouria, J P

    1991-08-01

    Adult male albino rats were orally administered 0, 25, 50 and 100 ppm of lead nitrate, mercuric chloride and cadmium chloride for 60, 120 and 180 days. The plasma sodium levels were decreased in rats exposed to varying doses of lead and mercury up to 180 days, while animals which consumed cadmium chloride showed an increase in sodium levels. In lead and mercury treated animals, plasma potassium levels were increased up to 180 days. The levels were decreased in cadmium exposed rats. These observations suggest that chronic exposure to these heavy metals considerably influences plasma sodium and potassium levels depending on the dose and duration of exposure.

  7. [Environmental effects of mercury around a large scale MSW incineration plant].

    PubMed

    Tang, Qing-he; Ding, Zhen-hua; Jiang, Jia-hua; Yang, Wen-hua; Cheng, Jin-ping; Wang, Wen-hua

    2005-01-01

    Samples of soil, vegetables, crops and air collected from Yuqiao Incineration Paint, Pudong Shanghai, were analyzed with an AMA-254 liquid/solid mercury analyzer. It is shown that background levels(BLs,2001) of mercury in surface soil is a little higher, mercury content in soils one year after operation(2002) and two year(2003) were both higher than BLs. The levels of mercury in vegetables is higher than Standard levels (GB 2762-94), the content of mercury in Soya and broomcorn sampled in 2003 was 2.3 and 2.7 times than that in 2002. Atmospheric mercury levels were 10.1, 5.0 and 10.6 ng/m3 in up-site,site and down-site.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Estimation of mercury speciation in soil standard reference materials with different extraction methods by ion chromatography coupled with ICP-MS.

    PubMed

    Park, Misun; Yoon, Hyeon; Yoon, Cheolho; Yu, Jae-Young

    2011-01-01

    Analytical methods for the speciation of mercury, based on microwave extraction and sonication extraction, have been tested to determine the inorganic mercury and methyl mercury contents in two standard soil reference materials: SRM 2710 Montana Soil and BCR 580 estuarine sediment. Prior to applying the speciation extraction methods, the mineral compositions were analyzed via XRD analysis, with SRM 2710 shown to be composed mostly of aluminum silicate minerals, while carbonate minerals were the major constituent in BCR 580. Two extraction methods, microwave and sonication, were tested for the analysis and recovery efficiency of total mercury. The accuracy and efficiency of each extraction method was also compared. In the analysis of total mercury, the microwave extraction method, with using methanol and HCl as extractants, was better for SRM2710, while the application of the sonication extraction method was more efficient for the calcite-based BCR 580. The results showed good separation and recovery efficiencies, with values reaching 100% of those estimated. The sonication method was selected for the speciation of mercury, especially in BCR 580. An extraction solution comprising of a 1:1 mixture of methanol and HCl was used for the sonication extraction of BCR 580, with the resulting extractants analyzed by IC-HG-ICP-MS for methyl mercury and inorganic mercury. As a simple, rapid, sensitive, and accurate method, sonication extraction was found to be satisfactory.

  14. In Brief: Mountaintop mining under scrutiny; High levels of mercury in U.S. rainfall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Showstack, Randy

    Proposed new regulations call for mountaintop surface coal mining in U.S. Appalachian states to reduce ``burying'' and other adverse impacts on streams and watersheds. The draft regulations, issued on 29 May by the Army Corps of Engineers, the Environmental Protection Agency, and other agencies, affects a 12-million-acre area encompassing parts of Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, and Tennessee.The mercury levels in rainfall in 12 U.S. states far exceeds safe standards established by the Environmental Protection Agency, according to a 29 May report by the National Wildlife Federation, a non-profit environmental group.

  15. Mercury levels and fish consumption practices in women of child-bearing age in the Florida Panhandle.

    PubMed

    Karouna-Renier, Natalie K; Ranga Rao, K; Lanza, John J; Rivers, Samantha D; Wilson, Patricia A; Hodges, Denise K; Levine, Keith E; Ross, Glenn T

    2008-11-01

    The southeastern United States, and in particular the coastal areas along the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf Coast) in Florida, experience some of the highest levels of mercury deposition in the country. Although the State of Florida's coastal border is among the longest in the United States, and the State has issued fish consumption advisories due to mercury on multiple fish species, few data have been systematically collected to assess mercury levels in the human population of the state or to assess the efficacy of the consumption advisories. Because of the generally high rate of seafood consumption among coastal populations, the human population in the Florida Panhandle, near Pensacola, FL is potentially exposed to elevated levels of mercury. In the present study, we analyzed hair mercury levels in women of child-bearing age (16-49 years) who had resided near Pensacola, FL for at least 1 year. We also surveyed the fish consumption practices of the cohort and evaluated awareness of the Florida Fish Consumption Advisory. Hair mercury levels were significantly higher in women who consumed fish within the 30 days prior to sampling (p<0.05) and in those women who were unaware of the consumption advisory (p<0.05). Only 31% of the women reported knowledge of the consumption advisory and pregnant women exhibited lower awareness of the advisory than non-pregnant women. The data suggest that public health interventions such as education and fish advisories have not reached the majority of women in the counties surrounding Pensacola who are most at risk from consumption of fish with high levels of mercury.

  16. 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

  17. Evaluating the potential efficacy of mercury total maximum daily loads on aqueous methylmercury levels in four coastal watersheds.

    PubMed

    Rothenberg, Sarah E; Ambrose, Richard F; Jay, Jennifer A

    2008-08-01

    Of the approximately 780 U.S. EPA approved mercury total maximum daily loads (TMDLs), most specify a reduction in total mercury (Hg(T)) loads to reduce methylmercury levels in fish tissue, assuming a 1:1 correspondence. However, mercury methylation is more complex, and therefore, proposed load reductions may not be adequate. Using multiple regression with microlevel and macrolevel variables, the potential efficacy of mercury TMDLs on decreasing aqueous methylmercury levels was investigated in four coastal watersheds: Mugu Lagoon (CA), San Francisco Bay Estuary, Long Island Sound, and south Florida. Hg(T) and methylmercury levels were positively correlated in all watersheds except in Long Island Sound, where spatial differences explained over 40% of the variability in methylmercury levels. A mercury TMDL would be least effective in Long Island Sound due to spatial heterogeneity but most effective in south Florida, where the ratio between aqueous Hg(T) and methylmercury levels was close to 1 and the 95% confidence interval was narrow, indicating a probable reduction in aqueous methylmercury levels if Hg(T) loads were reduced.

  18. Mercury in seabird feathers: insight on dietary habits and evidence for exposure levels in the western Indian Ocean.

    PubMed

    Kojadinovic, Jessica; Bustamante, Paco; Churlaud, Carine; Cosson, Richard P; Le Corre, Matthieu

    2007-10-01

    Breast feathers were used to estimate mercury levels in six marine birds nesting in the tropical western Indian Ocean, i.e. Sooty Tern (Sterna fuscata), Brown Noddy (Anous stolidus), Lesser Noddy (Anous tenuirostris), Audubon Shearwater (Puffinus lherminieri bailloni), Barau's Petrel (Pterodroma baraui) and the White-tailed Tropicbird (Phaethon lepturus). Juveniles consistently showed lower plumage mercury than adults. The lowest mean level was noted in juvenile Sooty Terns from the Glorioso Archipelago (0.05 microg g(-1)). The highest levels were obtained for adult Barau's Petrels from Reunion Island (0.96 microg g(-1)). An inter-site analysis of Sooty Tern showed higher mercury levels in birds nesting on Juan de Nova Island. Levels were low in comparison with values reported in the plumage of seabirds worldwide. The potential impacts of the size, the type (fish/cephalopod) and the origin (epi-/meso-pelagic) of prey on mercury intake in birds are discussed. Although the diet composition of individuals within a species appeared to be quite variable, combining results on mercury levels with common knowledge of each species allowed additional information on their dietary and foraging habits to be unraveled. PMID:17659323

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Effects of In-Office and Home Bleaching Gels on the Surface Mercury Levels of Dental Amalgam

    PubMed Central

    Oskoee, Parnian Alizadeh; Kahnamoui, Mahdi Abed; Oskoee, Siavash Savadi; Zadfattah, Firooz; Pournaghi-Azar, Fatemeh

    2010-01-01

    Objectives: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of different in-office and home bleaching gels on the surface mercury levels of dental amalgam. Methods: Sixty disk-shaped amalgam specimens (GS-80, SDI- Australia) were prepared and randomly divided into the following treatment groups: 1. Distilled water (control); 2. 15% home-bleach carbamide peroxide (Opalescence PF, Ultra dent, USA) applied for 6 h/day for 3 weeks; and 3. 35% in-office bleach carbamide peroxide (Opalescence Quick, Ultradent) applied for 30 min/week for 3 weeks. Levels of mercury were measured as weight percentages using an energy dispersive x-ray micro-analyzer detector connected to an electron microscope. Data was analyzed using one-way ANOVA and a post hoc Tukey tests (P<.05). Results: There were no significant differences between the surface mercury levels measured following treatment with the tested home-bleach and in-office bleach products (P=0.71). However, both materials yielded significantly more mercury levels than that of the control group (P<.001). Conclusions: The tested bleaching products significantly elevated the surface mercury levels of amalgam in vitro. PMID:20046476

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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 ...

  5. Mercury speciation analyses in HgCl(2)-contaminated soils and groundwater--implications for risk assessment and remediation strategies.

    PubMed

    Bollen, A; Wenke, A; Biester, H

    2008-01-01

    Since the 19th century, mercury(II)chloride (HgCl(2)) has been used on wood impregnation sites to prevent wooden poles from decay, leaving behind a legacy of highly contaminated soil/aquifer systems. Little is known about species transformation and mobility of HgCl(2) in contaminated soils and groundwater. At such a site the behaviour of HgCl(2) in soils and groundwater was investigated to assist in risk assessment and remediation. The soil is low in organic carbon and contains up to 11,000 mg Hg/kg. Mercury (Hg) concentrations in groundwater decrease from 230 to 0.5 microg/l within a distance of 1.3 km. Hg species transformations in soil and aqueous samples were analysed by means of solid-phase Hg pyrolysis and CV-AAS. In aqueous samples, Hg species were distinguished between ionic/reactive Hg and complex-bound Hg. Potential mobility of Hg in soils was studied through batch experiments. Most Hg in the soil is matrix-bound HgCl(2), whereas in the aquifer secondary formation to Hg(0) could be observed. Aqueous Hg speciation in groundwater and soil solutions shows that an average of 84% of soluble Hg exists as easily reducible, inorganic Hg species (mostly HgCl(2)). The proportion of complex-bound Hg increases with distance due to the transformation of inorganic HgCl(2). The frequent occurrence of Hg(0) in the aquifer suggests the formation and degassing of Hg(0), which is, in addition to dilution, an important process, lowering Hg concentrations in the groundwater. High percentage of mobile Hg (3-26%) and low seepage fluxes will result in continuous Hg release over centuries requiring long-term groundwater remediation. Results of soluble Hg speciation suggest that filtering materials should be adapted to ionic Hg species, e.g. specific resins or amalgamating metal alloys.

  6. 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.

  7. Mercury in the Grisette, Amanita vaginata Fr. and soil below the fruiting bodies.

    PubMed

    Drewnowska, Małgorzata; Nnorom, Innocent Chidi; Falandysz, Jerzy

    2014-01-01

    This study examined the mercury concentration in the Grisette Amanita vaginata Fr. and soil below the fruiting bodies collected between 2000 and 2008 from the wild at seven distant sites across Poland. The Hg content in samples was determined by cold atomic absorption method (CV-AAS) at a wavelength of 253.7 nm. Mean Hg contents varied from 0.096 ± 0.052 to 0.48 ± 0.13 mg kg(-1) dry matter (dm) in caps (range, 0.043-0.73 mg kg(-1)), from 0.047 ± 0.02 to 0.23 ± 0.07 mg kg(-1) dm (range, 0.028-0.47 mg kg(-1)) in stipes, and in underlying soil were from 0.035 ± 0.018 to 0.096 ± 0.036 mg kg(-1) dm (range, 0.017 to 0.16 mg kg(-1)). The median Qc/s values ranged from 1.2 to 2.2 (mean 1.2 ± 0.4 to 2.1 ± 0.5) indicating that Hg content in stipes was generally lower than in caps. This mushroom species has some potential to bioconcentrate Hg in the fruiting bodies, as the values of the bioconcentration factor (BCF) varied for the sites between 1.2 ± 0.6 to 11 ± 5 for caps and 0.61 ± 0.26 to 7.4 ± 3.9 for stipes. Also available literature data on Hg in A. vaginata are reviewed and discussed. PMID:24813987

  8. Critical levels of atmospheric pollution: criteria and concepts for operational modelling of mercury in forest and lake ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Meili, Markus; Bishop, Kevin; Bringmark, Lage; Johansson, Kjell; Munthe, John; Sverdrup, Harald; de Vries, Wim

    2003-03-20

    Mercury (Hg) is regarded as a major environmental concern in many regions, traditionally because of high concentrations in freshwater fish, and now also because of potential toxic effects on soil microflora. The predominant source of Hg in most watersheds is atmospheric deposition, which has increased 2- to >20-fold over the past centuries. A promising approach for supporting current European efforts to limit transboundary air pollution is the development of emission-exposure-effect relationships, with the aim of determining the critical level of atmospheric pollution (CLAP, cf. critical load) causing harm or concern in sensitive elements of the environment. This requires a quantification of slow ecosystem dynamics from short-term collections of data. Aiming at an operational tool for assessing the past and future metal contamination of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, we present a simple and flexible modelling concept, including ways of minimizing requirements for computation and data collection, focusing on the exposure of biota in forest soils and lakes to Hg. Issues related to the complexity of Hg biogeochemistry are addressed by (1) a model design that allows independent validation of each model unit with readily available data, (2) a process- and scale-independent model formulation based on concentration ratios and transfer factors without requiring loads and mass balance, and (3) an equilibration concept that accounts for relevant dynamics in ecosystems without long-term data collection or advanced calculations. Based on data accumulated in Sweden over the past decades, we present a model to determine the CLAP-Hg from standardized values of region- or site-specific synoptic concentrations in four key matrices of boreal watersheds: precipitation (atmospheric source), large lacustrine fish (aquatic receptor and vector), organic soil layers (terrestrial receptor proxy and temporary reservoir), as well as new and old lake sediments (archives of response

  9. Levels and potential health risks of mercury in prescription, non-prescription medicines and dietary supplements in Poland.

    PubMed

    Kowalski, Artur; Frankowski, Marcin

    2015-10-01

    Determination of mercury is important in the case of pharmaceuticals for which the European Union regulations have not defined the maximum permissible concentration of this metal. The aim of the study was to determine the levels of mercury in the following groups of drugs (n = 119): analgesics, diuretics, cardiacs, antihypertensives, anti-influenza, antibiotics, anti-allergics, tranquilizers, antibacterials and in dietary supplements (n = 33) available on the Polish market. Mercury was analyzed using cold vapor atomic fluorescence spectrometry CV-AFS. Its content in the samples varied in the range of 0.9-476.1 ng g(-1). Higher mercury concentrations were reported for prescription drugs (Rx): 0.9-476.1 ng g(-1) (median: 7.4 ng g(-1)), lower--for non-prescription medicines (OTC): 1.2-45.8 ng g(-1) (median: 6.0 ng g(-1)). In the analyzed dietary supplements the concentrations were: 0.9-16.7 ng g(-1) (median: 5.9 ng g(-1)). On the basis of the information contained in the leaflet accompanying the medicine, a daily dose of mercury taken into the body with an analyzed medicament was estimated and the health risk posed by using such medicines was assessed. The study indicates that it is justified to carry out measurements of mercury in pharmaceuticals due to its high, potentially harmful.

  10. 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.

  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 pollution in fish from South China Sea: levels, species-specific accumulation, and possible sources.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinling; Xu, Xiangrong; Yu, Shen; Cheng, Hefa; Hong, Yiguo; Feng, Xinbin

    2014-05-01

    Both total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) levels in fish collected from South China Sea (SCS) were studied to understand Hg pollution in Chinese tropical marine ecosystems. The average THg concentrations in fish species ranged from 39.6 μg/kg for rabbitfish (Siganus fuscessens) to 417 μg/kg for thornfish (Terapon jarbua), while those of MeHg varied from 13 μg/kg (rabbitfish) to 176 μg/kg (thornfish). The median values of MeHg/THg ratios in different fish species ranged from 36 to 85%. Significant inter-species differences of THg and MeHg in fish were observed due to feeding habits and fish sizes. Overall, carnivorous fish had higher levels of THg, MeHg and MeHg/THg ratios than omnivorous and herbivorous fish. High Hg levels in fish of the SCS were probably related to Hg input from atmospheric deposition and anthropogenic activities.

  14. Mercury accumulation by lower trophic-level organisms in lentic systems within the Guadalupe River watershed, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kuwabara, James S.; Topping, Brent R.; Moon, Gerald E.; Husby, Peter; Lincoff, Andrew; Carter, James L.; Croteau, Marie-Noële

    2005-01-01

    The water columns of four reservoirs (Almaden, Calero, Guadalupe and Lexington Reservoirs) and an abandoned quarry pit filled by Alamitos Creek drainage for recreational purposes (Lake Almaden) were sampled on September 14 and 15, 2004 to provide the first measurements of mercury accumulation by phytoplankton and zooplankton in lentic systems (bodies of standing water, as in lakes and reservoirs) within the Guadalupe River watershed, California. Because of widespread interest in ecosystem effects associated with historic mercury mining within and downgradient of the Guadalupe Riverwatershed, transfer of mercury to lower trophic-level organisms was examined. The propensity of mercury to bioaccumulate, particularly in phytoplankton and zooplankton at the base of the food web, motivated this attempt to provide information in support of developing trophic-transfer and solute-transport models for the watershed, and hence in support of subsequent evaluation of load-allocation strategies. Both total mercury and methylmercury were examined in these organisms. During a single sampling event, replicate samples from the reservoir water column were collected and processed for dissolved-total mercury, dissolved-methylmercury, phytoplankton mercury speciation, phytoplankton taxonomy and biomass, zooplankton mercury speciation, and zooplankton taxonomy and biomass. The timing of this sampling event was coordinated with sampling and analysis of fish from these five water bodies, during a period of the year when vertical stratification in the reservoirs generates a primary source of methylmercury to the watershed. Ancillary data, including dissolved organic carbon and trace-metal concentrations as well as vertical profiles of temperature, dissolved oxygen, specific conductance and pH, were gathered to provide a water-quality framework from which to compare the results for mercury. This work, in support of the Guadalupe River Mercury Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Study, provides

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Methylmercury levels and bioaccumulation in the aquatic food web of a highly mercury-contaminated reservoir.

    PubMed

    Carrasco, Luis; Benejam, Lluís; Benito, Josep; Bayona, Josep M; Díez, Sergi

    2011-10-01

    The low Ebro River basin (NE Spain) represents a particular case of chronic and long-term mercury pollution due to the presence of an industrial waste (up to 436 μg/g of Hg) coming from a chlor-alkali plant Albeit high total mercury (THg) levels have been previously described in several aquatic species from the surveyed area, methylmercury (MeHg) values in fish individuals have never been reported. Accordingly, in order to investigate bioaccumulation patterns at different levels of the aquatic food web of such polluted area, crayfish and various fish species, were analysed for THg and MeHg content. At the hot spot, THg mean values of crayfish muscle tissue and hepatopancreas were 10 and 15 times, respectively, greater than the local background level. Higher mean THg concentrations were detected in piscivorous (THg=0.848 ± 0.476 μg/g wet weight (ww); MeHg=0.672 ± 0.364 μg/g ww) than in non-piscivorous fish (THg=0.305 ± 0.163 μg/g ww; MeHg=0.278 ± 0.239 μg/g ww). Although these results indicated that THg in fish increased significantly with increasing trophic position, the percentage of the methylated form of Hg was not strongly influenced by differences in relative trophic position. This is an important finding, since the fraction of THg as MeHg in the top fish predator was unexpectedly lower than for other species of the aquatic food chain. Moreover, mean THg concentrations in piscivorous fish exceed the maximum level recommended for human consumption. From our findings, it is clear that for this specific polluted system, speciation becomes almost mandatory when risk assessment is based on MeHg, since single measurements of THg are inadequate and could lead to an over- or under-estimation of contamination levels.

  2. [Distribution of Mercury in Plants at Water-Level-Fluctuating Zone in the Three Gorges Reservoir].

    PubMed

    Liang, Li; Wang, Yong-min; Li, Xian-yuan; Tang, Zhen-ya; Zhang, Xiang; Zhang, Cheng; WANG, Ding-yong

    2015-11-01

    The mercury (Hg) distribution and storage in plants at water-level-fluctuating zone (WLFZ) in the Three Gorges Reservoir were investigated by analyzing the total mercury(THg) and methylmercury ( MeHg) levels in different parts of plants collected from three typical sites including Shibaozhai, Zhenxi and Hanfeng Lake in WLFZ. The results indicated that THg and MeHg concentrations in plants ranged from (1.62 ± 0.57) to (49.42 ± 3.93) μg x kg(-1) and from (15.27 ± 7.09) to (1 974.67 ± 946.10) ng x kg(-1), respectively. In addition, THg levels in different plant parts followed the trend: root > leaf > stem, and similar trend for MeHg was observed with the highest level in root. An obvious spatial distribution was also found with the THg and MeHg levels in plants in Hanfeng higher than those in the same plants in the other two sampling sites (Shibaozhai and Zhenxi), and there was a difference of THg and MeHg storage in plants in various attitudes. The corresponding THg and MeHg storages were 145.3, 166.4, 124.3 and 88.2 mg x hm(-2), and 1.9, 2.7, 3.6 and 3.2 mg x hm(-2) in 145-150, 150-160, 160-170 and 170-175 m attitudes. The accumulation ability of dominant plants in WLFZ for THg (bioaccumulation factor, BAF < 1) was weaker than that for MeHg (BAF > 1).

  3. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Barringer, Julia L; Szabo, Zoltan; Schneider, Donald; Atkinson, William D; Gallagher, Robert A

    2006-05-15

    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 2,000 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.

  5. Total mercury in fruiting bodies and underlying soil substrate of Poison Pax Paxillus involutus (Batsch Ex. Fr.) Fr. from various sites in Poland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brzostowski, A.; Falandysz, J.

    2003-05-01

    The total mercury concentrations were quantified in the caps, stalks and underlying soil substrate of Poison Pax Paxillus involutus collected from 19 spatially distant sites in Poland in 1994-2001 to examine the status of mercury pollution, bioconcentration features as well as bioindication potential of this mushroom species. The mushroom and soil samples were collected from the Mierzeja Wiślana Landscape Park, Wdzydzki Landscape Park, Zaborski Landscape Park, Augustów Forests, Borecka Forests, Wieluńska Upland, Darżlubska Forest, Tucholskie Forest and the counties of Gubin. Kościerzyna, Morag, Koszalin, Gdańsk, Bydgoszcz, Kętrzyn, Żuromin, Włocławek, and Starachowice. The mean concentrations of mercury varied, depending on the sampling site, between 15±9 and 410±200 ng/g dry matter for caps and between 14±26 and 200±130 ng/g dry matter for stalks, The mean soil mercury concentrations varied between 8.8±4.5 and 95±84 ng/g. The mean mercury concentration cap to stalk quotients varied between O.6±0.2 and 1.9±1.5, with exception of the site Morag with 4.4±7.2. The mean values of bioconcentration factor of mercury in caps and stalks of Poison Pax varied in relatively narrow range between 0.7 and 10, and 0.5 and 8.5, respectively.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Mercury distribution in the foliage and soil profiles of the Tibetan forest: processes and implications for regional cycling.

    PubMed

    Gong, Ping; Wang, Xiao-ping; Xue, Yong-gang; Xu, Bai-qing; Yao, Tan-dong

    2014-05-01

    Remote forests are considered a pool of Mercury (Hg) in the global Hg cycle. However, notably few studies have investigated the fate of Hg in the Tibetan forest. In this study, fifty-two foliage samples and seven litter/soil profiles were collected throughout the Tibetan forest. The concentrations of total Hg (THg) in foliage were positively correlated with longitude and negatively correlated with altitude, indicating that the emission of Hg is expected to decrease with increasing distance from emission sources to the Tibetan forest. The deposition flux of THg in the Tibetan forest (with an air-to-forest ground flux of 9.2 μg/m(2)/year) is ∼2 times the flux in clearings, which is suggestive of enhanced Hg deposition by the forest. The depositional Hg is eventually stored in the forest soil, and the soil acts as a net 'sink' for Hg.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Mercury in municipal solid waste in China and its control: a review.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Hefa; Hu, Yuanan

    2012-01-17

    Although a potentially significant and preventable source of environmental pollution, mercury in municipal solid waste (MSW) has not received adequate attention in China. Discarded mercury-containing products, if not recycled, ultimately release mercury to air, soil, and groundwater, even after being properly collected and disposed of in MSW management facilities. This review presents an overview on mercury in MSW and describes the emissions associated with landfilling, incineration, and composting in China. Besides end-of-pipe technologies for controlling mercury emissions from MSW management, strategies for controlling mercury in MSW are also discussed, focusing on mercury source reduction and recycling. Batteries and fluorescent lamps contribute to approximately three-quarters of mercury in MSW, and are expected to remain as significant sources of mercury in the near future. Reducing or eliminating the mercury contents in household products, particularly batteries and fluorescent lamps, should be the top priority in controlling mercury in MSW, while it is also important to set mercury contents in consumer products at acceptable and achievable levels based on a life-cycle approach. Meanwhile, cost-effective recycling programs should be developed targeting products containing elemental mercury, such as medical thermometers and sphygmomanometers, and waste products with high mercury contents (e.g., button cells) as well. PMID:22136661

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Mercury levels in coral reefs along the Caribbean coast of Central America.

    PubMed

    Guzmán, Hector M; García, Elia M

    2002-12-01

    Sediment and coral skeleton samples from 23 coral reefs along the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica and Panama (1497 km) were evaluated for total mercury (Hg). High levels of pollution were found in the entire region with averages of 18.9 and 71.3 ppb in coral skeletons and sediments respectively. Significantly higher contamination was found in Panamanian corals (21.4 ppb) while compared to Costa Rican reef sediments (85.9 ppb). Hg from several processes and non-point sources (e.g., erosion, runoff, flooding, mining, overuse of agrochemicals, industrial waste, ports, and refineries) may have affected the entire region. The widespread observed distribution suggests that Hg is being carried along long distances within the region due to its high concentrations found in "pristine" reefs. Forest burning and colonial mining residues may be considered as possible contamination factors.

  4. Mercury accumulation in the surface layers of mountain soils: a case study from the Karkonosze Mountains, Poland.

    PubMed

    Szopka, Katarzyna; Karczewska, Anna; Kabała, Cezary

    2011-06-01

    The study was aimed to examine total concentrations and pools of Hg in surface layers of soils in the Karkonosze Mountains, dependent on soil properties and site locality. Soil samples were collected from a litter layer and the layers 0-10 cm and 10-20 cm, at 68 sites belonging to the net of a monitoring system, in two separate areas, and in three altitudinal zones: below 900 m, 900-1100 m, and over 1100 m. Air-borne pollution was the major source of mercury in soils. Hg has accumulated mainly in the litter (where its concentrations were the highest), and in the layer 0-10 cm. Hg concentrations in all samples were in the range 0.04-0.97 mg kg(-1), with mean values 0.38, 0.28, and 0.14 mg kg(-1) for litter and the layers 0-10 cm and 10-20 cm, respectively. The highest Hg concentrations in the litter layer were found in the intermediate altitudinal zone, whereas Hg concentrations in the layer 0-10 cm increased with increasing altitude. Soil quality standard for protected areas (0.50 mg kg(-1)) was exceeded in a few sites. The pools of Hg accumulated in soils were in the range: 0.8-84.8 mg m(-2), with a mean value of 16.5 mg m(-2), and they correlated strongly with the pools of stored organic matter.

  5. Contaminated soils (II): in vitro dermal absorption of nickel (Ni-63) and mercury (Hg-203) in human skin.

    PubMed

    Moody, Richard P; Joncas, Julie; Richardson, Mark; Petrovic, Sanya; Chu, Ih

    2009-01-01

    Dermal absorption of heavy metal soil contaminants was tested in vitro with chloride salts of radioactive nickel (Ni-63) and mercury (Hg-203). Aqueous soil suspensions, spiked with either Ni-63 or Hg-203, were applied to fresh viable human breast skin tissue in Bronaugh diffusion cells perfused with Hanks HEPES buffered (pH 7.4) receptor containing 4% bovine serum albumin (BSA). Receptor fractions were collected every 6 h for 24 h when skin was soap washed. Tests were conducted concurrently in triplicate with and without soil for each skin specimen. Mean percent dermal absorption including the skin depot for Ni-63 was 1 and 22.8% with and without soil, respectively, while for Hg-203, values of 46.6 and 78.3% were obtained. Excluding the skin depot and considering only absorption in receptor, there was 0.5 and 1.8% absorption of Ni-63 with and without soil, respectively, and 1.5 and 1.4% for Hg-203. The potential bioavailability of the skin depot is discussed in relation to dermal exposure to these metals in contaminated soil.

  6. Soil-Air Mercury Flux near a Large Industrial Emission Source before and after Closure (Flin Flon, Manitoba, Canada).

    PubMed

    Eckley, Chris S; Blanchard, Pierrette; McLennan, Daniel; Mintz, Rachel; Sekela, Mark

    2015-08-18

    Prior to its closure, the base-metal smelter in Flin Flon, Manitoba, Canada was one of the North America's largest mercury (Hg) emission sources. Our project objective was to understand the exchange of Hg between the soil and the air before and after the smelter closure. Field and laboratory Hg flux measurements were conducted to identify the controlling variables and used for spatial and temporal scaling. Study results showed that deposition from the smelter resulted in the surrounding soil being enriched in Hg (up to 99 μg g(-1)) as well as other metals. During the period of smelter operation, air concentrations were elevated (30 ± 19 ng m(-3)), and the soil was a net Hg sink (daily flux: -3.8 ng m(-2) h(-1)). Following the smelter closure, air Hg(0) concentrations were reduced, and the soils had large emissions (daily flux: 108 ng m(-2) h(-1)). The annual scaling of soil Hg emissions following the smelter closure indicated that the landscape impacted by smelter deposition emitted or re-emitted almost 100 kg per year. Elevated soil Hg concentrations and emissions are predicted to continue for hundreds of years before background concentrations are re-established. Overall, the results indicate that legacy Hg deposition will continue to cycle in the environment long after point-source reductions.

  7. 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)

  8. 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

  9. 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)].

  10. Mercury cycling in terrestrial watersheds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shanley, James B.; Bishop, Kevin; Banks, Michael S.

    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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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...

  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. Fish Consumption, Low-Level Mercury, Lipids, and Inflammatory Markers in Children

    PubMed Central

    Gump, Brooks B.; MacKenzie, James A.; Dumas, Amy K.; Palmer, Christopher D.; Parsons, Patrick J.; Segu, Zaneer M.; Mechref, Yehia S.; Bendinskas, Kestutis

    2011-01-01

    There is considerable evidence that consuming fish has numerous health benefits, including a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. However, fish is also the primary source of human exposure to mercury (Hg). In a cross-sectional study of 9–11 year old children (N = 100), we measured fish consumption, blood lipids, total blood Hg, diurnal salivary cortisol (4 samples collected throughout the day), and performed a proteomic analysis of serum proteins using spectral count shotgun proteomics. Children that consumed fish had a significantly more atheroprotective lipid profile but higher levels of blood Hg relative to children that did not consume fish. Although the levels of blood Hg were very low in these children (M = 0.77 μg/L; all but 1 participant had levels below 3.27 μg/L), increasing blood Hg was significantly associated with blunted diurnal cortisol levels. Blood Hg was also significantly associated with acute-phase proteins suggesting systemic inflammation, and several of these proteins were found to significantly reduce the association between Hg and diminished cortisol when included in the model. This study of a pediatric population is the first to document an association between blood Hg, systemic inflammation, and endocrine disruption in humans, in a pediatric sample. Without a better understanding of the long-term consequences of an atheroprotective lipid profile relative to blunted diurnal cortisol and systemic inflammation, a determination of the risk-benefit ratio for fish consumption by children is not possible. PMID:22030286

  15. 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/).

  16. 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)

  17. 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)

  18. Decreased glutathione and elevated hair mercury levels are associated with nutritional deficiency-based autism in Oman.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Nathaniel W; Waly, Mostafa I; Al-Farsi, Yahya M; Al-Sharbati, Marwan M; Al-Farsi, Omar; Ali, Amanat; Ouhtit, Allal; Zang, Tianzhu; Zhou, Zhaohui Sunny; Deth, Richard C

    2014-06-01

    Genetic, nutrition, and environmental factors have each been implicated as sources of risk for autism. Oxidative stress, including low plasma levels of the antioxidant glutathione, has been reported by numerous autism studies, which can disrupt methylation-dependent epigenetic regulation of gene expression with neurodevelopmental consequences. We investigated the status of redox and methylation metabolites, as well as the level of protein homocysteinylation and hair mercury levels, in autistic and neurotypical control Omani children, who were previously shown to exhibit significant nutritional deficiencies in serum folate and vitamin B₁₂. The serum level of glutathione in autistic subjects was significantly below control levels, while levels of homocysteine and S-adenosylhomocysteine were elevated, indicative of oxidative stress and decreased methionine synthase activity. Autistic males had lower glutathione and higher homocysteine levels than females, while homocysteinylation of serum proteins was increased in autistic males but not females. Mercury levels were markedly elevated in the hair of autistic subjects vs. control subjects, consistent with the importance of glutathione for its elimination. Thus, autism in Oman is associated with decreased antioxidant resources and decreased methylation capacity, in conjunction with elevated hair levels of mercury.

  19. 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.

  20. 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...

  1. 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

  2. Feasibility of reflectance spectroscopy for the assessment of soil mercury contamination.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yun Zhao; Chen, Jun; Ji, Jun Feng; Tian, Qing Jiu; Wu, Xin Min

    2005-02-01

    Conventional methods for investigating soil Hg contamination based on raster sampling and chemical analysis are time-consuming and relatively expensive. The objective of this study was to develop a rapid method for investigating Hg concentration in suburban agricultural soils of the Nanjing region using reflectance spectra within the visible-near-infrared (VNIR) region. Several spectral pretreatments (absorbance, Kubelka-Munk transformations and their derivatives) were applied to the reflectance spectra to optimize the accuracy of prediction. The prediction of Hg concentration was achieved by univariate regression and principal component regression (PCR) approaches. The optimal model (R= 0.69, RMSEP = 0.15) for predicting Hg was achieved using the PCR method with the Kubelka-Munktransformation asthe spectral predictor. Comparison of three wavelength ranges (0.38-1.1, 1.0-2.5, and 0.38-2.5 microm) on the effect of prediction accuracy showed that the best results were acquired using the 1.0-2.5 microm spectral region. Correlation analysis revealed that Hg concentration was negatively correlated with soil reflectance while positively correlated with the absorption depths of goethite at 0.496 microm and clay minerals at 2.21 microm, suggesting that Hg-sorption by clay-size mineral assemblages in soils was the mechanism by which to predict spectrally featureless Hg. These results indicate that it is feasible to predict Hg levels in agricultural soils using the rapid and cost-effective reflectance spectroscopy. Future study with operational remote sensing techniques and field measurements is strongly recommended.

  3. Methyl Mercury Formation in Hillslope Soils of Boreal Forests: The Role of Forest Harvest and Anaerobic Microbes.

    PubMed

    Kronberg, Rose-Marie; Jiskra, Martin; Wiederhold, Jan G; Björn, Erik; Skyllberg, Ulf

    2016-09-01

    Final harvest (clear-cutting) of coniferous boreal forests has been shown to increase streamwater concentrations and export of the neurotoxin methyl mercury (MeHg) to freshwater ecosystems. Here, the spatial distribution of inorganic Hg and MeHg in soil as a consequence of clear-cutting is reported. A comparison of soils at similar positions along hillslopes in four 80 years old Norway spruce (Picea abies) stands (REFs) with those in four similar stands subjected to clear-cutting (CCs) revealed significantly (p < 0.05) enhanced MeHg concentrations (ng g(-1)), MeHg areal masses (g ha(-1)), and percent MeHg of HgTOT in O horizons of CCs located between 1 and 41 m from streams. Inorganic Hg measures did not differ between REFs and CCs at any position. The O horizon thickness did not differ between CCs and REFs, but the groundwater table and soil water content were significantly higher at CCs than at REFs. The largest difference in percent MeHg of HgTOT (12 times higher at CCs compared to REFs, p = 0.003) was observed in concert with a significant enhancement in soil water content (p = 0.0003) at intermediate hillslope positions (20-38 m from stream), outside the stream riparian zone. Incubation experiments demonstrated that soils having significantly enhanced soil pools of MeHg after clear-cutting also showed significantly enhanced methylation potential as compared with similarly positioned soils in mature reference stands. The addition of inhibitors demonstrated that sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) and methanogens were key methylators. Rates of demethylation did not differ between CCs and REFs. Our results suggest that enhanced water saturation of organic soils providing readily available electron donors stimulate Hg-methylating microbes to net formation and buildup of MeHg in O horizons after forest harvest. PMID:27461938

  4. Superpredation increases mercury levels in a generalist top predator, the eagle owl.

    PubMed

    Lourenço, Rui; Tavares, Paula C; del Mar Delgado, Maria; Rabaça, João E; Penteriani, Vincenzo

    2011-06-01

    Superpredation can increase the length of the food chain and potentially lead to mercury (Hg) bioaccumulation in top predators. We analysed the relationship of Hg concentrations in eagle owls Bubo bubo to diet composition and the percentage of mesopredators in the diet. Hg levels were measured in the adult feathers of eagle owls from 33 owl territories in the south-western Iberian Peninsula, and in three trophic levels of their prey: primary consumers, secondary consumers and mesopredators. In addition, we studied 6,181 prey in the eagle owl diet. Hg concentrations increased along the food chain, but the concentrations in eagle owls showed considerable variation. The Hg concentration in eagle owls increased when the percentage of mesopredators in the diet increased and the percentage of primary consumers decreased. Superpredation is often related to food stress, and the associated increase in accumulation of Hg may cause additional negative effects on vertebrate top predators. Hg levels in these eagle owl populations are relatively low, but future monitoring is recommended. PMID:21298339

  5. [Variations of soil fertility level in red soil region under long-term fertilization].

    PubMed

    Yu, Han-qing; Xu, Ming-gang; Lü, Jia-long; Bao, Yao-xian; Sun, Nan; Gao, Ju-sheng

    2010-07-01

    Based on the long-term (1982-2007) field experiment of "anthropogenic mellowing of raw soil" at the Qiyang red soil experimental station under Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, and by using numerical theory, this paper studied the variations of the fertility level of granite red soil, quaternary red soil, and purple sandy shale soil under six fertilization patterns. The fertilization patterns included non-fertilization (CK), straw-returning without fertilizers (CKR), chemical fertilization (NPK), NPK plus straw-return (NPKR), rice straw application (M), and M plus straw-return (MR). The soil integrated fertility index (IFI) was significantly positively correlated with relative crop yield, and could better indicate soil fertility level. The IFI values of the three soils all were in the order of NPK, NPKR > M, MR > CK, CKR, with the highest value in treatment NPKR (0.77, 0.71, and 0.71 for granite red soil, quaternary red soil, and purple sandy shale soil, respectively). Comparing with that in the treatments of no straw-return, the IFI value in the treatments of straw return was increased by 6.72%-18.83%. A turning point of the IFI for all the three soils was observed at about 7 years of anthropogenic mellowing, and the annual increasing rate of the IFI was in the sequence of purple sandy shale soil (0.016 a(-1)) > quaternary red clay soil (0.011 a(-1)) > granite red soil (0.006 a(-1)). It was suggested that a combined application of organic and chemical fertilizers and/or straw return could be an effective and fast measure to enhance the soil fertility level in red soil region.

  6. 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.

  7. 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%.

  8. 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