Distribution and mobility of As and Sb in stream water, sediment and suspended matter in a former mining area at Glendinning, southern Scotland.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

The small upland catchment of the Glenshanna Burn at Glendinning (Scottish Borders)
was investigated for possible As and Sb contamination derived from long-term
antimony smelting and mining activities. The aims were to establish the spatial variation
in concentration of As and Sb in water, suspended particulate matter (SPM) and
sediment of the river system; to assess the level of contamination, and to estimate the
chemical forms of As and Sb and their mobility in the river solids. On the basis of
multiple and single chemical extractions, it appears that As and Sb partitioning is highly
variable within this river system. Arsenic and Sb in all the compartments studied
showed high concentrations (exceeding acceptable guidelines). Arsenic concentrations
(as high as 970 µg L-1) in water samples adjacent to mine tailings indicate mobilization
of As. Despite the high relative availability of Sb in sediments only two water samples
contained detectable Sb levels. The main sink for Sb was the sediment. Speciation,
saturation index and solid phase stability for stream-water samples were evaluated using
Geochemist Workbench™ and PHREEQC computer programs. It was revealed that
both As and Sb undergo precipitation and dissolution in the stream water, their
solubility depending mainly upon Fe-Al oxy/hydroxide and calcite dissolution in the
water system. The only As and Sb bearing mineral phases supersaturated in the waters
were Ba3(AsO4)2 and SbO2 and Sb(OH)3. Principal Component Analysis indicates both
geogenic and anthropogenic influences on As and Sb behaviour in the soil-sedimentwater
system.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2008
Event26th European Conference "Health Implications of Environmental Contamination" - Athens, Greece
Duration: 31 Mar 20082 Apr 2008

Conference

Conference26th European Conference "Health Implications of Environmental Contamination"
CountryGreece
CityAthens
Period31/03/082/04/08

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Gal, J., Cuthbert, S., & Hursthouse, A. (2008). Distribution and mobility of As and Sb in stream water, sediment and suspended matter in a former mining area at Glendinning, southern Scotland.. Paper presented at 26th European Conference "Health Implications of Environmental Contamination", Athens, Greece.