A geochemical study was carried out at the former Abbadia San Salvatore (ASS) mining site of the Monte Amiata ore district (Italy). Hg, As and Sb total contents and fractionation using a sequential extraction procedure were determined in soil and mining waste samples. Ore processing activities provided a different contribution to Hg contamination and concentration in soil fractions, influencing its behaviour as volatility and availability. Soils of roasting zone showed the highest Hg contamination levels mainly due to the deposition of Hg released as Hg0 by furnaces during cinnabar roasting. High Hg contents were also measured in waste from the lower part of mining dump due to the presence of cinnabar. The fractionation pattern suggested that Hg was largely as volatile species in both uncontaminated and contaminated soils and mining waste, and concentrations of these Hg species increased as contamination increased. These findings were in agreement with the fact that the ASS mining site is characterized by high Hg concentrations in the air and the presence of Hg0 liquid droplets in soil. Volatile Hg species were also prevalent in uncontaminated soils likely because the Monte Amiata region is an area characterized by anomalous fluxes of gaseous Hg from natural and anthropogenic inputs. At the ASS mining site soils were also contaminated by Sb, while As contents were comparable with its local background in soil. In all soil and waste samples Sb and As were preferentially in residual fraction.
|Titolo:||Influence of ore processing activity on Hg, As and Sb contamination and fractionation in soils in a former mining site of Monte Amiata ore district (Italy)|
PROTANO, GIUSEPPE (Corresponding)
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|