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Temporal variation of trace elements, rare earth elements and Pb isotope ratios in sediment core from Kiel Bay, western Baltic Sea

Abstract : Abstract: We present a comprehensive study on the variation of trace elements (TEs) and rare earth elements (REEs) in a well-dated sediment core from Kiel Bay, western Baltic Sea. Mass fractions of 34 elements (major and trace) together with other relevant parameters, such as organic carbon and grain size, were determined in a 20-cm core that covers the last century. Enrichment factors and geoaccumulation indices were determined to assess the possible influence of anthropogenic inputs on element distribution. The obtained results show that the highest enrichment of TEs occurred in the period 1917-1970 especially for the priority elements as Hg, Cd and Pb. Determination of methylmercury (MeHg) was also performed, as it showed the highest content in surface samples. The MeHg percentages ranged from 0.02 to 1.2 % of the total Hg. REEs, which are nowadays considered as new emerging contaminants, did not reveal high enrichment attributable to anthropogenic influences, but provided useful baseline information for future monitoring of the area. The study of the Pb isotopic composition proved to be a valuable tool in determining the Pb pollution source, and revealed Pb in the layers that showed the highest enrichment came mainly from coal burning. Mercury isotopic signatures in the sediment core were used as a tool to identify the sources of Hg pollution. An isotope mixing model based on mass-dependent (MDF) and mass-independent fractionations (MIF) identified coal burning as the most probable dominant source for Hg anthropogenic contamination in the area
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Submitted on : Monday, January 4, 2021 - 12:32:52 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - 2:58:06 PM

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Anna Maria Orani, Emilia Vassileva, Sabine Schmidt, Sylvain Bérail, Julien Barre. Temporal variation of trace elements, rare earth elements and Pb isotope ratios in sediment core from Kiel Bay, western Baltic Sea. Environmental Chemistry, CSIRO Publishing, 2020, 17 (8), pp.579. ⟨10.1071/EN20078⟩. ⟨hal-03094474⟩

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