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Speciation and mobility of antimony and arsenic in a highly contaminated freshwater system and the influence of extreme drought conditions

Speciation and mobility of antimony and arsenic in a highly contaminated freshwater system and... Environmental contextToxicity and mobility of antimony and arsenic in aqueous systems are largely determined by their speciation and redox chemistry. In a highly contaminated freshwater system, one antimony species (dissolved SbV) dominated, while dissolved arsenic was more responsive to environmental conditions. Arsenic (as AsV) increased significantly during a drought period; this increase in As mobility presents a threat for first flush events and water contamination in a changing climate.AbstractAqueous and solid-state antimony (Sb) and arsenic (As) speciation is assessed in an Australian freshwater system contaminated by mining of primary sulfide minerals. The study aims to understand metalloid transformation and mobilisation in the system, and coincides with a severe drought providing the opportunity to examine the influence of extreme low-flow conditions. X-ray absorption spectra identified only SbV in <2mm sediments, despite boulder size stibnite evident in the creek. Romite-group minerals were detected by X-ray diffraction in oxidation rims of creek-bed stibnite, which potentially limit the contribution of dissolved SbIII to the waterway. Arsenic in <2mm sediments was dominated by AsV (1791) and orpiment (1693), while the co-occurrence of AsIII (1136) with orpiment suggests that primary As minerals are an important ongoing source of AsIII to the system. Dissolved metalloids (<45m filtered) dominated total water column concentrations and comprised mainly pentavalent species. Arsenic(III) was however identified in most water samples (up to 6.6g L1), while dissolved SbIII was only detected in one sample (3.4g L1) collected during the drought period. Dissolved AsV increased significantly in samples collected in low-flow conditions, considered a result of reductive dissolution of sediment Fe-oxyhydroxide host phases, but a similar increase in dissolved Sb was not observed. This study highlights a greater risk from As in this system, and the likelihood of increased As mobility under the warmer and drier environmental conditions predicted with climate change, especially during first-flush events. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Environmental Chemistry CSIRO Publishing

Speciation and mobility of antimony and arsenic in a highly contaminated freshwater system and the influence of extreme drought conditions

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Publisher
CSIRO Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © American Meteorological Society
ISSN
1448-2517
eISSN
1449-8979
DOI
10.1071/EN21103
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Environmental contextToxicity and mobility of antimony and arsenic in aqueous systems are largely determined by their speciation and redox chemistry. In a highly contaminated freshwater system, one antimony species (dissolved SbV) dominated, while dissolved arsenic was more responsive to environmental conditions. Arsenic (as AsV) increased significantly during a drought period; this increase in As mobility presents a threat for first flush events and water contamination in a changing climate.AbstractAqueous and solid-state antimony (Sb) and arsenic (As) speciation is assessed in an Australian freshwater system contaminated by mining of primary sulfide minerals. The study aims to understand metalloid transformation and mobilisation in the system, and coincides with a severe drought providing the opportunity to examine the influence of extreme low-flow conditions. X-ray absorption spectra identified only SbV in <2mm sediments, despite boulder size stibnite evident in the creek. Romite-group minerals were detected by X-ray diffraction in oxidation rims of creek-bed stibnite, which potentially limit the contribution of dissolved SbIII to the waterway. Arsenic in <2mm sediments was dominated by AsV (1791) and orpiment (1693), while the co-occurrence of AsIII (1136) with orpiment suggests that primary As minerals are an important ongoing source of AsIII to the system. Dissolved metalloids (<45m filtered) dominated total water column concentrations and comprised mainly pentavalent species. Arsenic(III) was however identified in most water samples (up to 6.6g L1), while dissolved SbIII was only detected in one sample (3.4g L1) collected during the drought period. Dissolved AsV increased significantly in samples collected in low-flow conditions, considered a result of reductive dissolution of sediment Fe-oxyhydroxide host phases, but a similar increase in dissolved Sb was not observed. This study highlights a greater risk from As in this system, and the likelihood of increased As mobility under the warmer and drier environmental conditions predicted with climate change, especially during first-flush events.

Journal

Environmental ChemistryCSIRO Publishing

Published: Dec 22, 2021

References